These must have tips for large families can be put in place in no time flat! Use them today and have a simpler week!
A college professor once gave our class ideas for becoming good music teachers. Her advice? We should always have a “bag of tricks”. And we should never stop adding to it.
She suggested we watch others and steal their best ideas to use with our own students.
Life as a large family mom is just the same! We Moms should have a “bag” of large family tips to keep on hand.
These tips for large families are tried and true ideas that we use in our own large family home. Use them! Share them with your mom friends!
Simple Tips for Large Families
…because who has time to implement a crazy complicated system? (No mom that I know, that’s for sure!)
Stomach Bug Kit
There are few germs more dreaded than the awful stomach bug. That’s because once it hits your home, it’s very difficult to get it back out.
In fact, these germs seem to go through the family at least twice (and sometimes more!) before they go.
And it doesn’t matter what age you or your children are… our poor little 6 week old caught it, too. 🙁
The time to have materials on hand to be ready for the stomach bug is now. Because who wants to leave the house when you need to be hanging out close to the bathroom?
(Besides, none of us wants to share those germs with anyone else, right??)
Here’s what you’ll want to have on hand:
- foaming hand soap (so it goes all over their hands and they have to scrub harder to get rid of it)
- paper towels for hand washing and cleaning (I put them inside a box and cut a slit so they pulled the paper towel through without touching the entire roll. You could also splurge for the Kleenex hand towels.)
- Lysol Laundry Sanitizer When I washed every bit of bedding in our home using this, we were finally able to get rid of the germs. Now I’m glad to have it on hand! Hopefully it will help me stop the germs before they spread next time…
- Either a spray bottle from the dollar store and some bleach (mix 50/50 with water) or a bleach cleaner. Use this on your entire bathroom to get rid of every germ.
- Disinfecting wipes for using on every surface you can’t easily spray with bleach
- crackers (easy to keep on hand, easy to keep down)
- cans of chicken noodle soup (or freeze some homemade soup!)
- Gatorade or Pedialite
- old ice cream buckets awesome for catching vomit, especially because you can throw them away afterwards and you’re out nothing
The only way to get rid of stomach bug germs is:
Militant hand washing. Watch them wash (or make them go back and rewash no matter how much they promise they did it right the first time).
Militant cleaning. Especially bedding for the sickies, but also anything they’ve touched including light switches, couches, and every single thing in the bathroom.
When it’s time to choose a diaper bag, a large family needs a few things.
Sure, it’s got to be a good sized bag. (You know you’ll be holding more than just diapers and wipes in there!)
But here’s something else to consider…
I used to love those cutsie diaper bags. Something that matched the pattern I had chosen for the nursery, or had a baby themed style.
But by baby number 6, I had different needs in mind.
First of all, you can’t beat the backpack style for ease of use! You can fling it over both shoulders and not have to try to balance one more thing.
It even has straps that wrap around the stroller so can keep the lower pouch free for other things!
And this time, I chose a very neutral style. That means even my teenaged boys don’t mind hauling the backpack for me when we go out!
Here’s the diaper backpack we went with. I love the variety of pockets, and have easily fit everything baby needs for outings.
On the Go
Running errands or going to activities with a large family can feel like leaving for a small vacation (even if you hope to be home in 2 hours!).
So there are a few things I try to keep on hand to make leaving easier. (Who can possibly remember everything on your way out the door??)
For instance, always keep a couple of matchbox cars in your purse. If a little one is booooored at the older child’s activity, it keeps them occupied for a bit.
(Plus they don’t take up much room!)
Keep a cooler filled with drinks in the kitchen or by the front door. If you only need to add ice, you’re more likely to do it.
And this can save you some serious cash vs. stopping for drinks for a carload of kids.
Stash a pair of scissors in your glove box. I can’t tell you how often they’ve come in handy!!
What About Snacking??
Every large family mom knows this song…
You go to the grocery store and bring home enough food to last for a good two weeks.
Unfortunately…two days later, you open the pantry to find that most of the food is already gone. (The junk food seems to disappear the minute you bring it home!)
There are a few things you can do…
When we were young, my Mom would keep a lot of our favorite cereals in the downstairs deep freeze. We were afraid to go downstairs (it was dark!), so no one ever went down to take extra cereal.
If you don’t have that option (or it wouldn’t stop your hungry hooligans), it might be time to consider a lock box.
Walmart has options that are much cheaper than you’d expect. A box and a lock and you’re ready to go!
Before you send me angry emails…no one is suggesting you lock up every bit of food. Keep healthier options available for the kids!
But this allows you to portion out the treats and snacks a little each day so it lasts longer!
Check out my favorite list of snacks for road trips!
Cheap Phone Service
These days, having older kids means having cell phones.
Honestly, when’s the last time you saw a phone booth? Even if you don’t want them having constant access to a phone, they often need one if they are involved in activities.
And it can cost a small fortune to try to pay for cell phones for a family these days.
But I also love all the options they offer parents!
For one thing, you can choose to simply have talk and text coverage for your child. This limits the amount of screen time they’ll have access to and gives you a little more control.
And if you feel uncomfortable with the idea of your child having access to any internet, there’s an even better option for you!
It’s basically a walkie talkie with the capabilities of a telephone.
Use these simple tips for large families and make large family life just a bit easier!
If you love tips like these, be sure to check out these hacks for large families!
What tips would you add for other large family Mamas to use?