Parenting is hard, but are there ways to make the process just a little bit easier? We certainly think so!
In fact, we think that hacks, like the 15 that we’ve assembled right here, might be just what you need to make the experience of parenting flow a bit more easy. Sure, it might not solve the big problems, but it will certainly clear away some of the little ones.
1. Bathroom Locks
Keep kids from locking themselves in the bathroom, and creating a crazy amount of panic on both sides, by twisting a large rubber band over both the door knobs. This five-second trick means that the door won’t even fully close, which will stop little kids from being able to trap themselves. Plus you can take it off whenever you want!
2. Simple Cup Solution
Kids need to drink lots of fluids throughout the day, but there’s nothing more frustrating as a parent than having to pick up cups from all over the house, or have your sink fill up with cups, that your child continue to use. Solve this problem by buying each child a cup of their own and glueing some magnets onto it. Then just stick it to the fridge!
3. No more shoe problem!
Kids have trouble getting their shoes on the right feet? One solution is to take a sticker, preferably a rectangle or circular one, cut it in half and then stick it to the bottom of your child’s shoes. That way, your child can look in the bottom of the shoe, and see which foot needs to go where.
4. Trampoline Safety
Worried about your kids getting their little fingers trapped between the trampoline springs? Take a few pool noodles and cut them to the size of your trampoline springs, then either slice them down one side to fit them on, or put them on when you’re assembling the trampoline. This will allow kids to use the trampoline, but pinch-free.
5. Stainless tipples
If you have problems with stains, pop open the vodka right now. But don’t take a sip just yet, because as it turns out vodka is a great stain remover for almost anything that’s covered in fabric. Just put some vodka on a white towel, dab it onto the stain and, like magic, the stain will clear up. Just make sure you wash it after, so your kid’s soccer uniform doesn’t smell like the floor of a pub.
6. Pencil pushers
Learning how to write and hold a pen properly can be a real challenge for kids, but there’s something you might not have thought of. When your child is holding their pencil correctly, pop some tissue behind their last two fingers. Any tissue will do, just make sure that they’re holding the tissue with their last two fingers on their writing hand. This will stop them from slipping out of the proper handwriting form.
7. Soap limits
Kids getting soap everywhere with the push pump dispensers? We’ve been there! Did you know you can limit the amount of soap that comes out of the dispenser by twisting a rubber band around the pump? It only takes a few minutes but it means that small-sized hands won’t use up all your liquid soap.
8. Splinters away!
Hate holding your struggling child while you dig a painful splinter from their foot or hand? Try this instead: Put a paste made from baking soda and a small amount of water onto the splinter and leave it for a few minutes. The baking soda will push out the splinter, meaning no painful digging with the tweezers.
9. Crayon stains no more!
Got crayons messing up your wall? Turns out that WD-40 can take crayon stains out of anything from walls to carpets, and even clothes. Just spray a small amount onto the wall, and then rub the crayon away. If you’re spraying WD-40 into clothing, make sure you add some liquid detergent along with it to remove the WD-40 as well as the crayon.
10. Permanent marker on wood
If your child has upgraded from crayons to permanent markers and drawn all over your nice wooden furniture, don’t despair. You can use toothpaste to get rid of the marker. Make sure that it’s not gel toothpaste, and then just apply the toothpaste straight on the mark and rub with a damp cloth. You can even use this on your wooden floors!
11. Cleaning dummies
Have a little one who still loves their pacifier, but you can’t seem to keep them clean in your handbag? Grab a few portable sauce containers, or wash some from your last take-away, and keep the pacifiers in that. You can use a small amount of sticky tape to keep the lids on, and this guarantees you won’t need to find somewhere to rinse the pacifier when they want it.
12. Short taps
If your kids are still little and your house happens to have taps that don’t stick out very far, try this: Take an old plastic bottle, like a shampoo bottle or similar, and cut it to fit on the end of your current tap. A long bottle can easily extend the tap 10-15cm, making it much easier to reach for smaller hands. Not only does this make your kids more independent, but it means you don’t have to lift them up to reach the taps, freeing up your time.
13. Mallow Out
When kids have a sore throat, there’s nothing worse than trying to wrestle cough syrup and cold and flu liquids down their throat. Well now, you have something else up your sleeve because it turns out the marshmallows can help ease a sore throat. You can use them in conjunction with cough syrup, but kids will think they’re a reward not another treatment!
14. Make cleaning a game.
It’s funny how easy it is to make cleaning into a game for kids. For sweeping, we’d recommend getting a child-size broom (you can buy mini ones in lots of places) and then making a square on the ground out of painter’s tape or even washi tape. The aim of the game? Get all the dirt in the square! Now sit back and watch your minions work!
15. VapoRub Toes
You’d think this might be wrong, but putting Vicks VapoRub on your child’s feet is just as effective as slathering it on their chest with them fighting all the way. We know that the soles of the feet can absorb oils (if you rub garlic on your feet, you’ll taste it 15-20 mins later), but doctors still aren’t sure why this works so well. Anyway, if your little one has a cough, give the bottoms of their feet a good rub with Vicks, pop some socks on, and let them go to sleep.