4 genius parenting hacks that will make life easier.
Parenting is a full-time job, and no matter how prepared you think you are, it’s not uncommon for first-time parents to become overwhelmed by the chaos of daily life when it comes to raising a little one. Raising a child takes time, dedication, and constant attention. Make no mistake — it’s one of the most important and rewarding jobs imaginable, but it’s also a lot of work and can feel exhausting at times.
Thankfully, there are several things you can do to make life easier on yourself as a parent. Finding unique ways to make life easier will benefit both you and your child. No matter how you want to raise your kids, and no matter what type of parent you consider yourself to be, parenting hacks are your best friend.
Let’s cover a few of them, so you can enjoy the ride just a little bit more without feeling overwhelmed by stress.
Make potty training fun
Potty training, for both kids and parents, is not what many would define as a “fun” experience. Often, someone ends up crying. Sometimes even the kids do, too.
Most kids are potty trained by the time they’re 36 months old, but there are always exceptions. Even if your child hasn’t reached that age milestone yet and you’re in the throes of potty training, it can be incredibly frustrating at times. You might wonder if they’ll ever wake up dry, or be able to head out of the house without a diaper.
Take a deep breath. They’ll get it with time and practice.
Consider using an interactive toy that they can see and play with as it goes potty. Always use candy and other treats as a reward. If you really want a fun time, throw a mini-party whenever they do successfully go to the bathroom on their own. Either way, potty training is what you make it. If you go in with the expectation that it will be terrible, it probably will be. However, if you go with a positive mindset, you may be surprised about what happens.
Stop stubborn stains
As a parent, you’re going to have to deal with what seems like endless piles of laundry. Some of the most frustrating things you’ll come across are pieces of clothing with stubborn stains. Things like ketchup, grass, or even blood stains can feel impossible to get out. Thankfully, there are some easy ways to remove common stains and keep your child’s clothes looking fresh.
Some of the best ingredients to keep on hand to deal with stains include:
- A packaged pre-wash;
- Talcum powder or cornstarch;
- Dish soap.
A quick search on your specific stains, and you’ll see countless “recipes” and step-by-step instructions that will help you salvage your daughter’s favorite top or your son’s baseball pants.
Compromise with picky eaters
It’s not uncommon for children to be picky eaters, especially during the toddler stage of life. They might be unwilling to try new things, or automatically assume they don’t “like” something just by the look or smell of it.
Needless to say, it can be hard to make sure your kids get the nutrients they need, and that can be both frustrating and somewhat concerning for parents. Thankfully, there are plenty of hacks you can try on your picky eater to get them to enjoy a variety of foods, including:
- Simplifying menu language;
- Sticking to a few simple ingredients;
- Reviewing menus with them ahead of time;
- Incentivizing them to try new things.
It can also help to bring healthy snacks you know your child will enjoy when you’re dining out, so they won’t get cranky from hunger.
Another fun “hack” is to find ways to sneak fruits and vegetables into the foods they enjoy. It’s easy to do in pasta dishes and casseroles, so don’t be afraid to get creative!
A spoonful of sugar (or juice) makes the medicine go down
Most little kids don’t like taking medicine. Nowadays, most medicine made for children is specifically meant to taste better, but that still doesn’t mean kids enjoy it. If you’ve ever had to struggle with your little one to take medicine for a virus or other illness, you’re probably willing to do just about anything to make the process easier.
Want a helpful hack? Use a juice box. Using one of your child’s favorite flavors, extract the juice from the box (save it for later!), cut a square in the back of the box, and place the filled medicine cup inside. Poke the included straw in the top of the box so it goes directly into the medicine cup, and have your child drink.
Undoubtedly, they’ll notice the taste right away. If they don’t like it, offer a few sips of the juice before getting them to take another sip.
There are many aspects of parenting that there are no real “shortcuts” for. It’s always going to be a lot of work. However, there are some tried and true hacks that can make life easier and less stressful for everyone. By getting creative with your everyday endeavors and finding unique ways to give your child what they need, you can stay true to your personal parenting style and foster a positive and happy home environment.