After four kids, taking care of my parents, and all the rest, I’ve developed some serious ninja mom skills. They enable me to survive the insanity that is having multiple kids in different places, and activities. These tricks and tips have ensured that I have skated by motherhood only semi-scathed and mostly unscarred. Use some of my suggestions at your own risk.
7 Ninja Mom Skills:
- Make your family help with chores. I’m not perfect at this, but we do have a chore chart, and when we insist that the kids do their chores, and do them correctly, things go much smother. That even means having them come back and finish anything that is partially done. One person cannot do all of the housework for 6 people. After all, when would you ever have time to eat bon-bons if you did all of the chores?
- Develop an easy arsenal of foods for dinner. A baked potato and salad can count for dinner. So can Chicken nuggets, pancakes, omelettes, or hot dogs even.
- Strategically plan bath times for the kids, especially when they’re younger. Plan their baths on nights when you have fewer activities. After all, most kids really don’t need a bath every day, as that can seriously dry out their skin. Bonus points if you count a trip to the pool as the night’s bath.
- Get used to dust. Lower your standards. Accept that there will probably be dust bunnies, and messes, and your house will not be perfect. The sooner you come to accept this, the sooner you will quit pulling out your hair.
- Make hard rules about where the kids can eat food. At my house, that means at the kitchen table, sitting down. They are not to drag food into the living room, as that attracts ants, ends up with spills, and more. The harder you are about this rule, the easier the messes will be to contain. Also, if any child over the age of about 3 makes a mess, they need to directly contribute to cleaning it up. Over the age of about 7 and they need to clean it up themselves (with supervision of course).
- Go through and sort mail when it comes through the front door, getting rid of, and instantly recycling catalogues, flyers, and stuff that comes in the mail. Then create a nice, neat, (Ok, who am I kidding?) pile of papers that you can tackle at a specific time. I like to work through mine about once a week or so. Anything that takes more than about 2 minutes to do goes into this pile, and waits.
- Get rid of as much clutter as possible. That is the hardest one for me, but as I get rid of more stuff, keeping on top of things becomes easier. That means periodically organizing and tossing everything under my sink, closets, and throughout the house. It’s not perfect, but I always have a list of stuff ready to be taken to Dorcas to be donated.
By learning as many time-saving cleaning tips and tricks, and figuring out where you can skate by, you’ll save yourself lots of time and headaches. You don’t get to be a ninja overnight, and there are always new ways to do things, and attack things. For instance, I love the cleaning tricks from fly lady, but she drives me batty with the incessant emails. Know what your limits are, and stick to them. No one is perfect, and you should rule your gloriously imperfect household.