I’m all about mum-hacks and just life-hacks in general. Who doesn’t want a short cut if one can be taken? The answer is we all would like to simplify and de-stress our lives, right? (If you answered no then feel free to browse the rest of the site while we blab on a bit here, kay?)
So I’m here today to share my tips on what makes my life with little kids a little easier.
Here we go!
1. Pre-make and prep what you can. I remember this dawning on me when I had my second son, Eddie. I could make sandwhiches for myself and Gus at breakfast time, while I already had out the bread, butter etc, pop them into the fridge, cover with wrap and have them ready to eat come lunch time. The same theory goes with dinner. Make your slow cooker your best friend. We are coming into colder weather so just chuck a heap of veggies and some of your favourite protein into a slow cooker, with herbs/spices and you have a yummy casserole by the time dinner rolls around.
2. Still on food, and this one has changed my life. Meal plan. I know it sounds boring, but who really wants to head back to the supermarket (with three bored kids in tow) because you need to replenish the fridge already. It’s a chore but once you’re in it you won’t look back. Sites such as www.taste.com.au have great weekly meal plan and shopping list tools.
3. Pick one bigger thing a day that you’ll get done. Just one thing. If it’s the mopping or ironing or stripping the beds. If you limit it to the one, you’re less likely to feel overwhelmed.
4. Get the kids out early and wear them out. My boys bound out of bed before the sun rises most days, so we are generally out and about by 8am. We also have to work around Billy’s nap time so the mornings are better. It frees up the afternoon to get jobs done or just relax, and when I say relax I mean the kids, not me!
5. On the subject of Billy’s nap time, I feel most overwhelmed and exhausted if I get zero downtime during the day, and let me clarify, my downtime isn’t anything flash. It could be taking time to write a blog post, drink a cup of tea, sit down for five minutes, scroll social media. So with that in mind, I try and get my “jobs” done while Billy is awake. When he goes down, Gus and Eddie generally love playing with their Lego while Billy naps, and their nagging for stuff is minimal during this time, so it’s a good chance for me to have some “downtime” too.
6. My kids like to hit 4pm and start acting like mini lunatics who haven’t eaten or had a drink all day. They fight, they scream, they nag. Big time. So, I’ll quite often give them an early dinner (see point #1) and then pop them straight into the shower and pjs.
7. I’ve got tubs. Activity tubs. I’m by no means organised, and this is as good as it gets. But it helps! We’ve got play-dough stuff, colouring in stuff, lego stuff. You get the drift. If the kids are in that ‘we’reeeeeeee sooooooooooooooo boooooooooored” stage, I can point them into the direction of a tub and it solves the problem, for at least 10 minutes!
8. This one has been LIFE-CHANGING for me. It will also completely shatter any ideas you may have had that I live a glamorous life. I have started folding washing and putting it away, as soon as it’s off the line/out of the dryer. Not having baskets and baskets of clean washing mounting up, has reduced my stress levels so much. It’s taken some discipline but I’m going to try my hardest to stick to it.
So there you have it. If I was to add anything else it would be this; after three kids the biggest life hack I have learnt is to “lower your own expectations.” It is impossible to do it all. You can’t, and have time to raise happy, healthy children, and keep your marbles. So while the above tips may help to simplify life for you, don’t add extra expectations to your already crazy, busy life.
You’re keeping tiny humans alive, and at the end of the day, that’s all that really matters.
Much love xxx