Mom-Hacks We’re All Guilty Of

Motherhood, along with all of life’s obligations, can often have you looking for any shortcut possible to make it through another day. Parenting, to most of us, is pretty much a daily quest for survival. If anyone says they don’t take shortcuts out of exhaustion or pure laziness from time-to-time when it comes to parenting – they’re full of sh*t. Doing the best you can, when you can, does not make you an awful  parent; it makes you awesome.

So next time you find yourself doing one of these mom-hacks below – know that most of us have too, or at least have thought about it.

Drop your older kid off at school and the younger kids are still in their pajamas. This only means you’re being resourceful with your time and energy – not being a bad mom. Hell, the other parents are lucky you wear yoga pants to bed or you’d be in straight up pajamas, too.


Look at your phone while your kids are playing at the park. I had a women tell me once I shouldn’t look at my phone because I was with my kids. She, of course, was kid-free so easy for her to say. Yes, you look at your phone to peep Facebook. So what? It’s normal to want to feel connected to other adults when you’re stuck in kid-prison all day. It doesn’t mean you don’t love your kids or enjoy your time with them, it means that every now and again you need a mental break from them. This is normal people so lay off the judgment. If you’re so amazing, go pat yourself on your perfect back while I scroll on my iPhone.

Feed your kids cereal for dinner a few nights a week. Some nights you just can’t muster up the energy to cook a meal, or even a boxed meal for that matter. Kids love cereal, it’s easy to make, and it’s food. Voilá.

You let water-play outside suffice as a bath. Hey, it’s water and it rinses off all the dirt and sweat. There’s no fighting to get your kids to do it. You don’t have to wash their hair. You don’t have to clean up a gallon of water off the bathroom floor, nor do you get soaked in the process. Sounds like a dream to me!


You run (not walk) out of the house for a girl’s night. You need a break, too. When you get a mental break; your kids benefit as well. Take as much alone time as you need, and do it without the guilt. Having time to yourself allows you to come back refreshed and with guns blazing to survive another day. You deserve it!

Some days being a mediocre parent is all we can be; and that is something to still be proud of. As long as your kids know they’re infinitely loved and they have all the essentials ­– I would say that’s a parenting win.

My New Obsession

I have a newfound obsession. Wait for it…..cloth diapers! I’ve been considering cloth diapering for a while now and always knew in the back of my mind it would save a lot of money and Miss Mother Earth. I’m not sure what my initial apprehension was besides admittedly being lazy.  With a toddler and a baby my time is money. I thought cloth diapering would be too time consuming and – for a lack of a better word – gross.

My only knowledge of cloth diapers was what our moms used on us back in the 70’s and 80’s. They used a tri-fold cotton rectangle fabric that was pretzel(ed) around our little waists and secured with safety pins – then topped off with some plastic under ware. This method did not appeal to me. Trying to put a regular diaper on a squirmy baby is sometimes torture, I couldn’t imagine having to pin it too!


Wanting to learn more I reached out to a few friends to seek advice, but my curiosity eventually faded. It wasn’t until I actually saw a cloth diaper on a baby that made me immediately change my mind. Why did I change my mind? Because they are so freakin’ cute! The stylish girl I once had the time to be – had to have them!

Being an over analyzer, I did do some research before jumping into cloth diaper land. I wanted to make sure I had the patience (and stomach) to handle washing my own diapers, or if I needed to hire a service. I also wanted to calculate all expenses to make sure it was worth the investment. In the end, I decided to go for it and I haven’t missed disposable diapers yet!

In fact, since receiving my cloth diapers I’ve become very protective of my stash. It’s actually kind of weird. I count them everyday to make sure I know where they’re at. I also coordinate them by color and keep them on their own special shelf. My husband thinks I’m crazy, which is partially true, but I want to safeguard our investment since they have to last for the next few years.

In case you were on the fence regarding cloth diapering or didn’t know much about them (like me); I’ve complied a list of helpful tips below:

  • Watch Youtube videos! There are hundreds of tutorials on how to use and wash your diapers, along with reviews for all the different kinds of cloth diapers on the market.
  • Join Facebook groups on cloth diapering. They provide a lot information and there is always a live person to answer any questions. It’s like having your own personal customer service!
  • Try a couple from different brands to see what you like best before buying a full stash. I have G Baby, Bum Genius and Thirsites. So far I like them all. G Baby has cloth inserts and disposable inserts (which are flushable) to put inside a plastic insert. Bum Genius have pockets to insert the cotton insert or built in ones, and Thirsties you will need to by pre-fold inserts.
  • No blowouts with cloth diapers! This is amazing. I haven’t had any blowouts or leaks. They are a little more bulky than disposable diapers, but it hasn’t been a problem in regards to baby’s clothes fitting properly.
  • Buy a sprayer for your toilet. I have one made by BumGenius and it is very easy to install. You can use this to ‘spray’ off any residue from number 2’s, instead of dunking it in the toilet. It makes the clean up so much easier! They are $60 and worth it. Plus you can sell it later.


  • Buy some odor / spot remover. You’ll need this if you launder yourself. I use Babyganics.
  • Buy a wet bag to store the diapers in until you do your wash – usually every two days. Try to let air in the bag otherwise the diapers get stinky.  You can find these on or Amazon.
  • Regarding washing – I do a rinse cycle (cold water), then wash with ¼ cup of laundry soap in hot water. Then I line dry or lay out to dry to save their life span. For stains, either do the above twice or lay them out in the sun. The sun naturally bleaches! It’s like magic!
  • You’ll need about 16-20 diapers to complete a stash, otherwise you’ll be doing laundry more often. Be sure to buy the diapers and inserts.
  • My electric nor water bill has increased from using the washing machine.
  • You can use the inserts as wipes to save money too.
  • A Chicago diaper service I would recommend (if you go that route) is Green Diaper Babies. The owner is Shannon, she’s awesome!
  • If you get diapers with Velcro make sure to close them before washing, or they fray any other items in the wash.  I learned this the hard way.

Overall, I love them! My only regret is not starting earlier! Let me know if you have any other questions in the comments or share your tips for our readers!

Here’s to saving money and the earth!

alex diaper model


Baby Gizmos & Gadgets

It’s hard to believe how much has changed in the land of baby paraphernalia since my first son was born just three years ago.  Walking through BuyBuyBaby shopping for our second baby, I’d literally get heart palpitations.  The people behind this store are brilliant because they make any mom feel like she needs everything they are selling.  Why yes, I need that $900 stroller…who doesn’t?  I would stand and watch demo videos for every product in the store with wide eyes, then gaze at my husband with puppy dog eyes.  This was code for: we need this or our baby will be doomed!  Needless to say we spent a small fortune on top of all the hand-me-downs from our first son.  Some items were definitely worth it while others were not.

I know there are a lot of new moms and moms-to-be who follow the blog so I wanted to share some insight on my favorite things, as well as things you could probably pass on. Each photo has a link to the product for your convenience. 

Items I love:

  • Momaroo – Awesome-a-roo! This thing is LEGIT. Totally worth the money and as a bonus – it’s small.  As a Chicagoan this helps tremendously as our space is limited.  It fits nicely in the corner and my little guy loves it.
Follow Link to Purchase
  • Medela Breast Pump– If you are nursing this is hands down the best pump.  It lasted a full year of pumping with my first son and I’m able to use it with this baby.  Spend the extra money, it’s worth it.
Follow link to purchase
  • Grocery Cart Protector – This turned out to be one of my favorite things!  We used it all the time with my first son.  You can even lay your baby down in it.  Being a germ-a-phone, it also eased my mind knowing my baby wasn’t touching all the germs on the handle. Totally worth the purchase.
Follow Link to Purchase
  • Hands Free Pumping Bra – I didn’t know about this with my first son until a friend clued me in. If you are pumping, this is a must.  Who doesn’t need their hands free?  It is great to use at work as well because you can still answer emails and catch up on work uninterrupted while pumping.
Follow Link to Purchase
Follow Link to Purchase
  • Nose Frida – Okay this looks gross, however it is amazing.  It works way better than your typical nasal aspirator. It completely clears your baby’s nose. My baby has a difficult time nursing when he can’t breathe fully from his nose. Nose Frida takes care of that and clears his sinuses. Do yourself a favor and get one stat!
Follow Link to Purchase
  • Boppy Lounger – This has been really helpful for both my son’s.  I set it next to me on the couch and lay my napping baby on it.  I can still be close to them and it’s comfortable for them to sleep on.  This is not to be used if unattended.
Follow Link to Purchase
Follow Link to Purchase
  • Pack-N-Play with Changing Area – I’m an idiot and did not get a Pack-n-Play with my first son.  We didn’t have the room in our small condo.  However now that we live in a three-level town home, this works perfectly.  The changing table prevents me from running up and down the stairs all day to change him.  If you live in a multi-level home, I would definitely recommend this.
Follow Link to Purchase
Follow Link to Purchase
  • Wipe Warmer- I’ve seen other Blogs say this is a waste of money, but when you live in Chicago or any cold weather climate – it’s a must.  The cold wipes send my son into shock followed by a screaming tantrum, especially at night.  It’s cold! They are cold! Those wipes are cold! At least try to comfort their booty with a warm wet wipe.
Follow Link to Purchase
Follow Link to Purchase
  • Portable Music Player (MyBaby)– This little piece of magic machinery is a life saver! I put this in the bassinet and his car seat. It instantly calms him down.  It comes with four sounds, has a timer and a clip to easily hang from the car seat.


  • Glass Bottles- Bottles are always a hard find.  It depends on what your baby likes. With this baby I decided to try glass bottles because heating anything in plastic makes me nervous.  I’ve come to love (and my baby too!) Life Factory bottles.  He doesn’t get gas from air pockets, they fit in any bottle warmer and they are easy to clean. They also come with a cute little silicon cover.
Follow Link to Purchase

Now for some items you can pass on:

  • Fancy Burp Cloths – Guess what? They vomit on them 24/7 so why spend money on cute little (thin) burp cloths?  I use old school cloth diapers.  You can get (6) in a pack for the price of (1) fancy one. Don’t waste your money.
  • Clothes – I guarantee everyone else will buy you clothes.  This is the most common gift for new babies. Plus, you’ll end up just rotating whichever clothes are easiest to change their diapers in. Also, more than half the clothes your baby has will never be worn because he/she grows by the hour.
  • Swaddle Blankets – Good news – the hospital gives you those!  Stock up on a few before you leave, you are paying for ‘supplies’ on your hospital bill anyways – take advantage of the ‘free’ supplies!
  • Crib Sets – Baby bedding is so expensive and they can’t have it in their cribs anyways!  Bumpers, unless breathable ones, are not supposed to be used. The big thick blankets pose a suffocation risk too.  Buy a simple crib sheet and for warmth buy sleep sacks.  Save the bedding money for when they are toddlers.
  • Shoes- In case you didn’t notice, babies can’t walk.  Their feet never touch the ground, so why buy shoes? Plus, they grow so fast they may get to wear them only a few times. I know baby shoes are cute but until they can walk you are better off just buying cute socks.

Helpful savings tips:

  • Sign up on or Amazon Mom for diapers and wipes. In the long run you’ll save money and they send you discounts and coupons frequently. Shipping is free too!
  • If you sign up to receive emails from BuyBuyBaby, you get 20% off coupons frequently by email and regular mail.  You can use BedBath&Beyond coupons there too! Lastly, they take multiple coupons for the same transaction. When you have kids it’s all about saving money!

Hope this information helped.  If you have any additional tips or products you loved, leave them in the comments section for our new moms who need the advice.