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Mom Shortcuts : Saving Your Sanity One Quick Tip at a Time

As a mom to three kiddos I love a clean house and while this might sound like an oxymoron, it can be done.  What’s even better than a clean house? A house that takes little effort to keep clean.  With a minimalistic style and simplified routines, I’ve found that keeping things tidy most of the time isn’t as difficult as one might think.

I talk a lot about this concept in my new book, Simply Clean – if you haven’t grabbed it, order your copy today!

Here are a few of my favorite shortcuts, simple things I do that make life just a little simpler.

SIMPLIFY LAUNDRY – I don’t sort the kids’ laundry – I simply wash any dirty clothes together on one day of the week.  To avoid any sorting, I wash each kid’s laundry separately and the older kids fold and put away their own clothes –  yay!  Each child has their own hamper in their closet – I think this keeps things easier from dirty to washed and put away.

DON’T USE A TOP SHEET – this saves time for changing sheets AND it keeps things easier for kids as they are learning to make their own beds.  Simply pull up the quilt or duvet and toss on the pillows and the bed is made.  Wash the quilt and/or duvet cover as you would sheets.

USE A PLASTIC TABLE CLOTH FOR PLAY-DOH AND CRAFTS – I keep a plastic table cloth in the play-doh bin and throw it down on the table before embarking on a play-doh or crafting session.  Clean up is a breeze and everyone has more fun 🙂

PREP FOR THE WEEK – Don’t let a new week surprise you, do a little something to get ready!

KEEP A SICK KIT – You know it’s going to happen – keeping a couple items on hand keeps those late night trips to the store to a minimum.

USE BINS FOR COATS AND SHOES – This is especially helpful when we have guests over for more than an afternoon and there’s lots of running in and outside.  Put a couple bins by the door and let the kids drop coats and shoes in the bins in lieu of shoes strewn from one end of the room to the other.

ENCOURAGE INDEPENDENCE – Plan for snacking and lunch-packing by keeping good food choices at the ready.

BOREDOM BUSTERS – Keep screen-free activities handy for kids to grab and use (especially in the summer!).

USE A BASKET FOR BOOKS INSTEAD OF A NIGHTSTAND – When kids are little or if you don’t want to invest in a nightstand, use a basket for books by the bed.  This creates a place for the often used items and it keeps things neat.  Use a clip-on light to illuminate the space in lieu of a table lamp.

BASKETS, BASKETS, BASKETS – my favorite tool for organizing kids’ stuff – open baskets.  They look nice on a shelf and kids can easily see what’s in them at a glance.

KEEP LIDS FOR WATER BOTTLES IN A BIN – I keep lids separate from water bottles – this allows everything to thoroughly dry and it saves space and keeps lids from falling on my head.

HOMEWORK CADDY – keep school and art supplies in a caddy for homework and crafting, grab the caddy, draw, do homework, and put everything back in a minute.  Once of my favorite tips, ever.

CUTLERY CADDY – Simplify mealtimes with a cutlery caddy.  Keep often used items handy and easy to grab.  This is great for little ones setting the table and for when you forget something – no need to get up and grab it as soon as you sit down.

I’d LOVE to hear your shortcuts – leave them in the comments!

 

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Comments

  1. I love the homework supplies caddy! We homeschool, and our dining room is our school room. I found a small lazy susan art caddy that spins, but it’s heavy to move back & forth between the table & the drawer bins that hold all of my children’s school items. They go back & forth often during the day to pick one marker or colored pencil or another, scissors, etc. But having a caddy with the most used items to just plop right in the center of the table would eliminate the extra time it takes for them to get up & go back & forth between the table & the art caddy. 😀

    I also really love the open basket concept for organizing children’s items. I have used this for years, and it is by far the easiest method for my children to quickly put things away. We have several IKEA drawer bins (http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/S29871291/) that we use for school items as well as for toys & Legos. My children can easily pull out the whole drawer, play with what’s inside, and then pile it all back in to put away when they’re done. We love them!

    Thanks, Becky, for sharing your tips!! You are making my life much easier and much more organized!! 🙂

  2. As a retired teacher of 43 years, I loved all the great ideas you have come up with!!

  3. I use a clear wine rack to keep water bottles in easy reach for morning rush. My son in law has his smoothie containers in easy reach with his own wine/organizer.

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