March 31, 2012

10 Clever Solutions for Kid-Related Problems

Let's face it, parenting can be tough.  Every day we face any number of challenges and we don't always have easy solutions.  I may not have the answers for the really big issues, but I have collected several great tips for many of those little annoyances that can be just as challenging when you deal with them day after day.


The best part?  Most of these tips are simple, easy, why-didn't-I-think-of-that solutions to common problems you'll come across during your crafts, projects and day-to-day life.  Many thanks to several awesome kid-centered bloggers for their input and great advice.



The Problem:  It's a nice day, the kids are outside blowing bubbles, but within minutes, someone's bottle of "bubble juice" spills.  Now a kid is crying, you're trying to refill it and spilling more than you're getting into the bottle.  Pretty soon, the fun day of bubbles is full of tears and spills.

The Solution:  Get an inexpensive plastic container with a faucet and re-filling bubble containers is a breeze.  Plus, you can make your own bubble solution and save a few bucks too! 
(Tip and bubble recipe from right HERE at Come Together Kids)



The Problem:  After a fun afternoon of crafting, there's glitter everywhere.


The Solution:  Two awesome moms gave this solution ~ use playdoh to clean up the sparkles!  Just press the playdoh onto the glitter and it'll pick it right up.  Now your craft space is sparkle free and you have some fun glitter playdoh to play with!
(Thanks Jamie, from Hands on as we Grow and Esther from Creativity My Passion)

Photo from Creativity My Passion


The Problem:  Your kids have just worked hard carefully layering colored sand into a Sand Art masterpiece and put the lid on.  Unfortunately, within minutes, the jar has been jostled and all those pretty layers turn into a muddled mess.

The Solution:  I'm not going to give away the secret, but here's a hint... all you need is some glue to keep the layers in place.  Check out Kristen's great tip at Busy Kids = Happy Mom!



The Problem:  Your little ones are hard at work using pattern blocks and making fun pictures and shapes.  Then someone bumps the table, all the pieces shift and the beautiful design is all messed up.

The Solution:  Take a look at the sticky trick MaryAnne came up with  HERE at MamaSmiles to solve the problem.  Now the pieces stay in place and the kids can make elaborate pattern block creations without worrying about shifting tiles.



The Problem:  You want to make some fun melted crayon molds, but the thought of peeling off all those crayon wrappers has you looking towards other projects instead.  (If you've ever spent an hour unwrapping crayons and picking bits of crayon out from under your fingernails, you know exactly why we need a better solution!)

The Solution:  Check out this clever solution Cari shows us at Time for Play.  All you need is a container of water and your work is done for you.



The Problem:  Your children like to show off their independence at breakfast and pour their own syrup.  (or salad dressing at lunch, or Parmesan cheese at dinner, etc.)   Unfortunately portion control has not yet been mastered and their food is soon swimming in syrup or other condiments.

The Solution:  Take a few minutes to pour single serving sizes in individual containers.  (We used the plastic baby food containers)  Then set out their plate and let them pour away to their hearts content. 
(Tip from right HERE at Come Together Kids)



BONUS food-related tip suggested by several clever bloggers... Use kitchen shears to cut your young children's food.  Works great on chicken nuggets, fruits, veggies, pizza, etc and it's way quicker than a knife and fork.


The Problem:  Your preschooler keeps trying to string beads, only to have a tough time managing holding the string and getting the beads on.

The Solution:  Deborah at Teach Preschool. offers this tip... tape one end of the string to the table!  Now your little one only has to hold one end of the string and they have their other hand free to pick up beads and string them on.



The Problem:  Your kids leave the lids off their markers and they've dried out.

The Solutions :  We have two solutions for this dilemma.  The first tip is from Valerie of Inner Child Fun

 "When markers start to dry out, dip the tips into white vinegar and set so that the tips are standing up. Wait about 5 minutes, then blot the marker tip on some paper until the color starts to show. Place the cap back on, and let sit overnight"
Another tip is from Trisha at Inspiration Laboratories.
  "When markers start to dry out, you can also dip the tips in water and paint with them. It will have a watercolor effect"



The Problem:  Your kids stuck some crayons in their pockets and now they've gone through the washer and dryer!

The Solution:  MaryAnne from Mama Smiles has the following suggestion...

 If you dry a load of laundry with a crayon, you can get it out by running the load through a HOT wash with a little laundry detergent and some oxiclean. Toothpaste and a toothbrush works wonders at getting crayon out of a dryer drum. It even smells nice. Run a load of rags to remove any remaining crayon/toothpaste before running a load of clothes you care about. I once washed and dried FOUR crayons that my darling daughter had put in her pockets. I hadn’t even thought to check her pockets, as she was only one and I didn’t think she knew what pockets were for…
Check out MaryAnne's other awesome kid-related laundry tips HERE 


The Problem: Your child has a special day,trip or event coming up and you are constantly bombarded with "How many more days until..." questions.

The Solution:  Make this cute little stand they can use to countdown to the big day.  
(Idea and Tutorial HERE at Come Together Kids)



Well, there you have it!  Weren't these 10 solutions clever?  I hope you've found some great tips you can use to make your life a little easier (and give you more time to focus on the trickier problems like sleeping through the night, potty training and picky eaters!)

Sharing our clever solutions at:

8 comments:

  1. These are some great ideas!! Thank you for sharing! I love the glue tip with sand art. I love sand art but have stayed away from it for that very reason. The ugly grey mix of colors isn't that great! Another thing you can do with necklaces is to make a slip knot out of one end since tape doesn't always hold string down. I really want to try the watercolor idea. I just need to remember to save the markers that end up without a lid. It happens often!

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  2. What a great post! Thanks for sharing our laundry and pattern block tips!

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  3. Thanks for this - pinned it I love the glitter idea, my 9 year old loves glitter and I find it everywhere from the laundry to the baby & toddlers bodies. Her older brothers in high school do not appreciate it on their homework or laptops either.

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  4. Great solutions! Thanks for including my little dried marker trick. :)

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  5. I love these solutions and probably have needed (and not had) everyone of them through five kids. I am your newest follower from TheStuffofSuccess. Feel free to stop by and say hello - have a terrific week. Thanks Athena

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  6. I was just about to make our own bubble solution today and came to your blog for the recipe. I love all these tips! I see myself using a lot of them in the future!

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