During the first year as a first-time Mom, I realized that there were more changes to my lifestyle than I anticipated. Unorganized schedules, less time for self-care, and not enough time get everything done in one day. My mind was piling up action items sky-high, and I was completing the list with 40% progress. Before I knew it, I was already burnt out.
It wasn’t until I realized I was facing three roadblocks as a busy Mom that I discovered new tools to help me overcome them.
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Roadblock #1: Shopping trips are no longer easy.
If you’re like me, you’d agree that shopping trips are no longer easy. Going to the store means getting that diaper bag ready, getting your child (or children) prepared, and getting them into the car.
With a newborn or infant, your scenario might look a little like car seats, diaper bags, purses, and bottles. And if you’re with walking toddlers, you might be struggling with shoes, socks, jackets, and seat belts.
Now this is only Part 1 of this roadblock. Part 2 entails the IN-STORE shopping experience.
The only word that comes to mind when I think of my in-store shopping experience is tantrums. When dealing with tantrums, 30-minute shopping trip turns out to be 2-hours or more and before I know it, I come home looking like I’ve gone through a meadow of tornadoes (my 16-month old toddler enjoys running around the store and hates sitting in the shopping cart).
Despite the fact that I come home looking like my hair has gone through a tornado, I finally discovered tools that can help me reduce 2-hour long store trips, all while still receiving my household necessities.
Walmart Grocery Pickup. If you haven’t hopped onto the wagon for a free pickup experience, then the Walmart Grocery Pickup is one that you don’t want to miss out on. I’ve used the Walmart Grocery Pickup on several occasions and found that it is one of the most convenient tools I’ve needed as a busy mom. Without having to take a trip inside the store, I can order my items online using the Walmart Grocery app and just pick it up when it’s ready. This is especially perfect when you’re the only parent operating at the moment and can’t afford wasting time inside a store.
Amazon Prime. Although signing up for Amazon Prime requires a monthly (or annual) fee, if you take advantage of the free 30-day trial and use it to your advantage during a busy time, it can be your life-time saver. Amazon Prime offers free 2-day shipping (among other awesome features) and is great for any household items you need (shampoo, dish soap, laundry detergent, etc…). I often use Amazon Prime to order baby items throughout my daughter’s first year (baby teethers, baby shampoo, stroller accessories, etc…).
Target REDCard Free Shipping. The Target REDCard Free Shipping feature has been another useful tool during my busy days. I mostly used it to order baby clothing and essentials. What I love about this feature is that I can save an additional 5% off any transaction (in-store or online), I get free 2-day shipping, AND if I subscribe to the baby subscription, I can save a total of 15% off baby essentials (diapers, wipes, formula). Not only have I used it after giving birth, I also used it to order maternity clothing during pregnancy.
Roadblock #2: Cleaning the house has become a struggle.
House cleaning was never really a favorite of mine but I still made an effort to keep it dust-free. A few sweeps here and there and Lysol wipes were always done in the house. But after having my daughter, I struggled to keep the housework up to par. Fortunately, I found useful and automated tools to help me meet my cleaning goals.
iRobot Roomba 652 Robot Vacuum. A robotic vacuum has been one of my favorite inventions I invested in so far. With a simple click, the floor can be cleaned and vacuumed like new. I run my vacuum once a week (or whenever it is needed) and no longer have to worry about finding the time to clean the carpet.
Cleaning Schedule. Rather than a material tool, I found that a cleaning schedule helps me the most when it comes to organization. Each week I follow a list of items in the house that I should clean and mark it off when it’s complete. It has helped me clean around the house without being overwhelmed. I’ve also reserved Friday as a “rest day” so that I can rest, relax the mind, and recharge. Grab your cleaning schedule in the free resource library!
Roadblock #3: I have become more forgetful than before.
I never knew this to be true until I had my daughter but becoming a mom has definitely made me more forgetful. Losing keys, forgetting laundry, paying bills late, and missing items on my shopping list are common struggles I faced. Rather than being forgetful all the time, I also discovered useful tools that helped me overcome this.
Mom Planner. This takes me back to middle school and continues to be a daily necessity today. With my 2019 Mom Planner, I feel like my life has become organized, on track, and a walk through daisies. Everything about my planner spells “amazing”. I use this thing for almost everything! From tracking monthly expenses, scheduling down important events, writing in birthdays, and to jotting down thoughts of the day. I also use it to organize my blogging goals and activities.
Calendar. When I talk “calendar”, I’m referring to that smart app you have on your phone. That’s right! My phone calendar is the epitome of staying on track. Although I keep important events in my planner, my phone calendar is the real thing to keeping me on my toes. I get notifications, reminders, and bill due dates all stored in my little device and carry it with me everywhere. Naturally, my phone goes wherever I go so why not use it?
Whiteboard. A whiteboard has been my bedroom’s long-time friend and my personal reminder when I come into the room. I use my whiteboard to write notes and events that I may forget on the days that I forget to look at my planner. This is a great tool for busy moms who doesn’t like using planners but need a daily, weekly, or monthly reminder of activities. One perfect tip I find effective is to place the whiteboard near a place that you walk by frequently (your closet, your door, your mirror, by the table lamp, etc.) so that you see it often. The more you see it, the more it will do its work as a reminder.
Notes App. Sometimes when I need to take quick notes but have no notebook on me, I use my Samsung Notes App to store shopping lists, words, and phrases that are used as a reminder. It is convenient and portable, which makes it a handy tool wherever I go.
Fossil Smartwatch. Although I have my phone with me most times, there’s still something great about having a watch on your wrist – especially a smartwatch. Without taking out my phone, I can use my smartwatch to track time and remind me of important events. I get a buzzing notification when I get phone calls, appointment reminders, and weather forecasts. What’s even better is that the band itself has an edgy feminine look, which is perfect for a business trip!
With all these tools I’ve used as a busy mom, what other tools do you use and what has helped you balance work and family life? Comment below and share with us!
Oh, and one more thing.
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