Life as a mom is busy, but these 5 clever life hacks for busy moms will help you save time so you can do what’s most important.
I know, because I’m busy too, but I’ve found a few life hacks that really save me a lot of time and make it easier to get all of the tasks on my to-do list done.
So here goes …
Maintain a Digital Shopping List
Have you ever been out running errands and realize that you left your shopping list at home? I can’t tell you how many times it’s happened to me in the past, but now I have a secret weapon – the digital shopping list.
I keep my list in Evernote (it’s free and you can sign up HERE), because it’s basically my brain and I hate having multiple apps cluttering up my phone screen, but there are other apps you can use as well.
I go ahead and type my dinner meal plan for the week at the bottom of the shopping list so I have everything in one place. Boom! My life is instantly simplified.
And by the way, if you have a home business you may want to go ahead and pay for Premium– it makes life so much easier because you have unlimited uploads and can sync to multiple devices.
related: How I Organize With Evernote
Order Household Supplies Automatically
We all know I love my DIY Citrus Cleaner, but there are some household items that I can’t make myself so I use the Amazon Subscribe and Save combined with Amazon Prime (Get a FREE Amazon Prime 30-Day Trial HERE ).
Yes, it’s an extra $11 a month out of your budget.
But here’s the thing.
For most of my married life I haven’t paid “extra” for much of anything unless it was an absolute necessity, but in the last few years I’ve learned the value of trading a little bit of money in exchange for saving time because I realize that I can always make more money, but I can’t create more time.
Plus, I was always adding items we didn’t “need” to my cart in order to get the free shipping. If I add $15-$20 worth of non-necessities to my cart once a month, I’m paying an extra $180-$240 a year to use Amazon, which is way more than a year of Prime costs.
And I’m telling you, putting some tasks on autopilot has relieved so much stress. Who wants to run out to the store for toilet paper in the middle of the night? (Not that we’ve ever done that — I’m talking about a “friend”. 😉 )
Speaking of that necessity, one of the best Amazon Deals on household products is this toilet paper which I get about every three months. The good thing about Subscribe and Save (other than not running out of toilet paper!) is that you can adjust the frequency of your shipments if you end up with a huge over-supply of TP … or granola… or dishwashing detergent… or dog food or …
Plus we get Amazon streaming (which means cheap movie-watching date nights) and free two day shipping on things we need like the school book I forgot to order for my daughter’s online class — oops!
Having said that, if you’re in the more-time-than-money season, I get it. Been there, done that. In that case please feel free to skip this hack (and see my note at the end of the post).
Use Grocery Pick Up Services
Grocery pick up has saved me SO. MUCH. TIME.
This is no advertisement for Walmart (I know other stores offer it as well), because honestly I have not been a fan of shopping there. How is it that there is ALWAYS a line at the checkout?
I’ve even been known to buy shampoo at the grocery store knowing that I’m paying more just because I don’t want to go into Walmart.
But Grocery Pick Up has changed all that. I order what I need online in a just a few minutes then my hubby goes to pick it up. I have seriously saved a minimum of two hours in my week.
Full Disclosure: While the service is free, I’m paying between $10 and $20 more per week by not shopping at Aldi — worth it!
Carry A Portable Charger
Lest I compromise my status as a money saver, let me share a hack that costs very little: a portable phone charger.
Smart phones are great tools, but for most phones the battery life is a bit of an issue. And who wants to be out for the evening only to realize that your phone has 1% battery?
Keeping a portable phone charger in my purse has saved me so many times.
I also insist that my teenage daughters have one on them at all times. Hopefully they will never need it, but in the event of an emergency, they have a backup plan for their cell phones.
We like this brand of portable phone chargers, although my husband carries the more manly camo version rather than the pink one pictured.
My last life hack is the occasional 20 minute shower.
I’m a horrible person.
But then we have to consider the dozens of lives that have been saved because I’m so much calmer and saner after a nice hot shower.
An extra $20 on my monthly water bill is way cheaper than therapy.
By the way, if you’re a math whiz you probably figured out that these life hacks cost me around an extra $100 a month.
When we were living on less than $28,000 a year, these hacks would have been luxuries that we could not afford to pay for. I don’t want to be insensitive to those who are struggling right now, but currently, we are out of debt and I make significant extra income from my blog so we are able to absorb these costs without a problem.
Yes, we could easily save $100 a month, but as I mentioned earlier, trading that $100 for the time and other benefits I gain in return is invaluable to me.
If you’re struggling to make ends meet, there are still ways to save time that do not cost money like these time savers.
I would love to hear the life hacks you use to simplify life so leave a comment. 🙂
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I was curious about the grocery pickup services; I don’t know anyone who uses it but it does seem like it would save time and money (because they WILL stick to the list and add a dozen off-list impulse items)! Thanks for sharing your input on that!
Kimberlee Stokes says
Yes! My impulse buys have been greatly reduced by using the pickup service . Great point Lisa.
“Full Disclosure: While the service is free, I’m paying between $10 and $20 more per week by not shopping at Aldi — worth it!”
I was wondering if this is what you meant by this: that you don’t succumb to buying things that they are featuring that aren’t on your list, you know those “Special/limited time buys”?? Thanks for clarifying, because I don’t know how anyone beats Aldi’s prices, esp. since they have lowered them lately and have more available than ever, but it really is hard to stay focused even there, as ‘small’ as it is. 🙂
Kimberlee Stokes says
Hey Christine – Sorry for the confusion. I’m saying that I am spending MORE by shopping at Walmart than I did by shopping at Aldi. For the past few months I have been dealing with some health issues and a lot of responsibilities so I had to make the shift to grocery pickup every week.
I am now starting to feel better so I did shop at Aldi this week and I did save money. These are suggestions for moms who are in a super busy season and just need to find a way to cut through the overwhelm, but if you have the time, it is definitely better to shop at Aldi if you want to save money.
Hope that clears it up. Thanks for asking — there were probably other people who were confused as well. 🙂
I love our portable charger, especially when we’re out at the amusement park! I wonder why our phone battery always loses power faster there. =)
Right now my time saver is buying pre-made snack bars. I used to be all, “There’s no way I’m paying that much for snacks!” But we raised our grocery budget last year from $60 a week to $75, so we now have that wiggle room. It’s much more convenient to have a pre-wrapped bar in my purse for when I get hangry. Besides, I’m always finding protein bars and breakfast/snack bars on clearance at Big Lots and Ollie’s (My weaknesses), so I guess it evens out in the end!
Kimberlee Stokes says
I love packing snack bars when I’m traveling, but I never thought to check at Big Lots. Thanks for the tip Jaime!