kids

The 'TikTok clothes hanging trick' and 5 other clever time-saving parenting hacks.

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Thanks to our brand partner, Ampol Foodary

Let’s cut to the chase. Parenting is a full-time, unpaid gig. Throw in paid work, and it’s… a juggle.

And if you’re a single or solo parent? That juggle is tenfold. So, any hacks that make things easier and more efficient for me are MADE OF GOLD DUST.

I would always pride myself in my ability to be well organised – can you tell I’m a Virgo? But even the most organised of us parents sometimes need a little help, and this single mama ~froths~ over any hack that cuts corners but still gets that particular job done – I am a sucker for any activity that kills two birds with one stone.

When I stumbled on this TikTok hanging clothes trick my mind was BLOWN. But it was then I realised that for this TikToker and mum @mommaneedsahobby, this trick would be so normal for her day-to-day, but it’s such a revelation for most of us watching on in awe. 

@mommaneedsahobby How do you hang your shirts? #lifehacks #hangingshirts #over30 #adulting ♬ Ultimate life hacks - Kelly

So, I decided I needed to share some handy home hacks that I use regularly. You might even be able to add to your hacks tool belt, too.

1. Dressing kids in their outfit the night before.

This is likely my favourite ever hack and I use it every 👏 single 👏day 👏. 

I first used this hack when I took my daughter Hayley on an overseas trip when she was almost 2 years old. Between the jetlag and some awkwardly timed flights (looking at you, 7am take-off) I had to find a way to make sure the chaotic morning had one less task to handle and the best way was to ensure that was to have one less person to dress.

That was three years ago. Now with a second kid in tow, and one less pair of hands to help out, this hack makes my morning routine SO much easier. As for the now-5-year-old, I lay out her school uniform the night before which means all I have to do is tell her 104629 times to put it on… but at least it’s all there ready to go.

While I’m talking about my two-birds-one-stone way of life, a bonus parenting hack for chaotic mornings is to skip preparing food for yourself or the kids if there’s no time, and instead grabbing it on the run. 

Ampol Foodary is the bees knees for exactly that – a quick stop where everyday essentials, tasty food and coffee are all in the one spot, particularly if you’re needing any combination of them at odd hours. 

I can’t tell you how convenient it is in amongst the kids’ pick-ups, drop-offs, work and appointments. I’m talking milk, bread, eggs etc, as well as delicious food-to-go like handmade sandwiches and ready-made meals plus quality hot coffee. When life gets chaotic, knowing you can quickly grab everything you need to keep you going for that day in the one place is honestly the *best* feeling. 

2. YouTube, but with safety parameters.

When kids want to watch incredibly niche (and MESSY) slime experiments or learn how to draw a very specific TV show character I’m not equipped to teach, I’m all about efficiency with outsourcing that to super wholesome YouTube videos. The kids are learning and sparking their creativity but YouTube doesn’t always feel like the safest place for little minds to be clicking around in. 

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And being a parent, we don't have the time to always hover over the kids to make sure they're watching what they're meant to be.

PSA: YouTube Kids is the version of YouTube to try. It’s still free like YouTube, is a separate site altogether to YouTube, and has got easy-to-use parental controls on it, so you can then set parameters on what your child watches. A hack I’ll be using for the next 10 years!

3. Paying for petrol without leaving your car.

Hands up if you dread the thought of driving with the kids and the fuel light pings?

When I’m not writing for Mamamia I’m an on-road rep, which means I use A LOT of petrol. 

And the thing I fear the most is having to refuel the car when I’ve got the kids in the backseat, but it’s inevitable. I will openly admit I am one of those people who see the fuel light ping and either ignore it, or forget about it until I’m down to the last 10kms and panic sets in..

Time to welcome the Ampol app lovingly with open arms into your life, because you won’t want to go back once you tried it. You pay for your petrol FROM THE COMFORT OF YOUR CAR. I know, SAY WHAT. How we made it to 2022 without this, I don’t know. You just pump your petrol as normal, pay on the Ampol app while you’re seated in your car, then on your way. Done.

And for those of you who use the Everyday Rewards card, you can link it in the Ampol app so you never miss a point when shopping at Ampol Foodary – genius.

Image: Supplied.

4. The onesie washing hack.

For those with kids still in snap onesies? This hanging hack means less pegs and more room, and I’m here for it. I particularly love this hack because my clothing horse has three core areas where the rod is thicker which means pegs don’t work, so I reserve these areas for hanging onesies using this method.

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While we’re talking about hanging washing too, I sort my washing as I hang it which means less processing when it comes to dealing with the dried clothing. An alternative is also to fold and sort the clothes as you take them off the rack which encourages you to put the clothes away immediately, as opposed to creating a mountain of clean clothing which I have been very guilty of recently.

Image: Supplied.

5. The poonami shoulder hack.

Now I’m on the onesie train of thought. So, that’s where I’ll say that poonamis (a disastrous poop not even a nappy can contain) are inevitable and possibly the most heinous things to clean up after.

Our instincts when taking a baby’s clothing off is to take it off as you put it on (so: over the head) which means one thing if a poonami has occurred – a ~less than desirable~ mess on their little head. Look, we’ve all been there trying to navigate how on earth to take their clothes off without making matters worse but in comes the onesie shoulder hack.

Have you ever noticed how 99 per cent of baby clothing (some shirts have them too) have this weird shoulder fold? Well, dear friends, that shoulder fold is there so you can – wait for it – pull the onesie DOWN. That is correct. You can take their clothes off by pulling it DOWN their bodies and therefore eliminating a messy head (no thank you, please). You’re welcome. 

And there we have it. Five handy hacks that I use regularly to save time and make my life a little easier.

What hacks have I missed? Tell us any of your own game-changing, time-saving parenting hacks in the comments below.

Feature Image: Supplied/Mamamia.

Ampol Foodary
When you're on the road, it's the stops that help you travel far and wide. Like the ones at Ampol Foodary. There's truck stops, hunger-struck stops and little pick-me-up stops. There's lunch on the go, Monday's going slow and chocolates running low stops. There's snack stops, kickback stops and getting the day back on track stops. And there's milk and bread, butter and eggs and stretching out the legs stops. When you need to keep going, Ampol Foodary is worth a stop.