If you’re a parent, then there’s a never ending massive pile on of things that suck up your time each day. We crave technology that simplifies tasks so we can get an ounce of free time, and then we turn around and use that free time to stuff more into our schedule.
Shoot yourself in the foot much?
Trendy parents trying to keep up with their schedules frequently gather as they drop kids off at endless extra-curricular activities and steal just a few moments of their time to share war stories, time saving tips and how they manage to avoid pulling their hair out (or duct taping their children to the rafters of the basement for a little peace).
Here at SLAP™ Watch, we know kids. We have them attached to our legs, and we do whatever we can to save time and steal a few moments for ourselves. Here are some of our favorite time saving tips from the war room.
Create a soothing bedtime ritual: Every one of us is guilty of hitting the break point, stabbing a finger at the other end of the house and huffing under muffled grumbles a rapid-fire “gotobed!” That results in meltdowns, heads poking out of doors, and extended bed times. Make it easy on you and the little monkeys by establishing a little consistent ritual.
Give each one something intimate and personal, like a story. Do a puppet show, reenact a scene from your favorite movie, etc. The 10-15 minutes you spend here, even if it results in some laughter, is much better than the hour+ struggles you normally face.
By the way – reenacting scenes from your favorite movie means -their- favorite movie. Tell Dad to stop trying to do scenes from Rambo. Sly is displeased.
Deal with fuzzy spider legs later: One mom once told me that her children always had her running late in the morning; late to eat, late to school, and ultimately late to work. To save time she would shave one leg on one day… and the other on another day.
Not exactly the ideal choice when it comes to romance, but if it means making it to your destination on time that’s a sacrifice that the family just has to live with. Just don’t forget the other one, Sasquatch.
Outsource the yard work: I was shocked to find that there are people out there who find yard work fun. An old friend from college told me that she tried desperately to get her kids to help with the yard – unfortunately at the first sign of a bug, all three of the girls would scream like they were stars in the next Hostel sequel.
Her solution was to rally up a few people who love to tend to yard work and pay them to do what everyone else detested. That also frees up your time for other more important things.
Exercise at home: I know what you’re thinking, ‘who has time to exercise?!’ If you’re sporting a gym membership, you’re wasting upwards of 30 minutes to an hour in drive time, prep time, packing and unpacking, staring at your moobs, socializing at the gym, etc. around your workout.
Instead, lay out everything you don’t want your kids to touch. When they grab something you don’t want them to have, chase them down. Do this for 15 minutes and you’re good. If you have children under 3, then you’re already doing this anyhow.
Keep track of important things: How many times have you torn apart your home trying to locate critical items; shopping list, wallet, purse, clutch, glasses, car-blippey-thingy, children, watch, shoes. Before you crash from exhaustion at night, put them all in one location, otherwise you have to suck up losing 10-15 minutes to hunting each morning.
Remember this post when you find your keys in the ice box and your little one has the contents of your wallet all over their bedroom floor. Can’t say we didn’t warn you.
Get a SLAP™ Watch: When I wear a watch with a traditional belt on it, I still go through those bouts where I chase it around my wrist trying to fasten it. It’s usually when I’m in a rush. At least with a SLAP™ Watch you can just Slap it into place.
Or slap it across the kids’ forehead when they don’t cooperate.
It also silences small screaming children who are fascinated by the alien device that somehow manages to stiffen itself and play dead.
Finally… take a moment and remember: time is relative. In the future, we’ll probably mass produce minutes, and we’ll buy ‘em from soda machines and look back on these days at our calendar-burning parties and laugh our heads off. Until then, use some of these tips to save your sanity and keep track of time with your SLAP™ Watch.