29 hacks in May 2011

12 May 2011

Save money at amusement parks by giving kids a purchase "allowance"

Paula's ingenious travel money hack works for any vacation, not just a visit to the amusement park! A few years ago, we decided to designate a certain amount of money for special purchases whenever our family went to an amusement park. We figured out what we could afford ($25, but...

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12 May 2011

Post-it Easel Pads turn into an instant doodle art gallery

via flexibledreams.blogspot.com Ever seen the poster-sized Post-it easel pads used in office and school settings? Perfect for turning large-format doodle art into a makeshift, moveable wall gallery. Pictured here: Amy's artistic daughter with a pad of Post-its rescued from the recycling bin. Thanks for sharing, Amy! Full Post: Flexible Dreams:...

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09 May 2011

Insulated alligator clips make better bib clips

ACM's hackerish Radio Shack solution to the problem of expensive, low-quality bib clips.

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07 May 2011

Weekend Catchup: highlights from the week of 5/2/11

It has been a remarkable week. I'm still processing the amazing response to my interview at The Pioneer Woman: Homeschooling about why I homeschool my son. This is the first time I've written in detail about homeschooling, our school experience, and my son's Asperger's, so it feels like new territory....

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06 May 2011

Use Photoshop to turn photos into printable coloring pages

This one looks like a nice way to keep the children entertained at a wedding reception.

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06 May 2011

Use an empty cereal bag to pipe frosting

via tipnut.com Tracy, who seems to come up with brilliant hacks on a weekly basis, found this one at Tipnut, from Betty Russell: For years used cereal bags for icing! The wax paper is nice and heavy and easy to turn into a pastry bag. Cut a small angle on...

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05 May 2011

Mesh food covers become play tents for action figures

Leah's clever playtime hack will inspire hours of imaginary fun: Last summer, I picked up several mesh food covers (the kind used for protecting picnic food from insects) at the Dollar Store. Turns out they make great play tents for when the kids want to play "camping" with their Little...

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05 May 2011

Write reminders on the bathroom mirror with dry erase marker

We've talked before about using the bathroom mirror as a notice board, but the purpose was to track medicine dosages. Kimberly expanded on the idea to boost her memory: I don't know about you, but my memory isn't what it used to be. And whenever I do remember something, I'm...

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04 May 2011

Teacher Appreciation Week flash cards (free printable)

via urbanblissdesign.com It's the middle of Teacher Appreciation Week at my daughter's school and I...really appreciate the teachers. But I haven't exactly shown it. Apparently, neither did my friend Marlynn of Urban Bliss. The difference is, she whipped out these adorable flash cards, which she has made available as a...

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04 May 2011

Pipe icing letters or numbers onto cookies for educational snacks

Terrie's delicious hack for using up leftover frosting comes with a bonus of fun learning: Whenever I have leftover colored icing in my pastry bag/decorator from making a birthday cake, I save it for a couple days for fun snacks. We use it to write our names or spelling words,...

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04 May 2011

"Paint on" diaper cream with a makeup brush

Cristina's solution to sticky diaper cream-covered hands: To keep hands (and thus everything else) clean during changes when we have to apply rash cream, I bought an inexpensive foundation makeup brush. The gloppiest cream can be applied liberally this way and the clean diaper put on without all the cream...

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03 May 2011

Potty training inspiration: make custom underwear decals!

Becky titled this hack "Inspiring underwear." I say: inspired underwear for those who are looking to motivate beginning potty-trainers: They say you should let your potty-training child pick out some big-kid underwear at the store so that he/she is inspired to keep them dry for potty training. But when I...

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03 May 2011

Homeschooling: why we do it

I haven't talked much here about homeschooling our son, Luke*, or about the conditions that brought about our decision to homeschool. Mostly, it's because Parent Hacks isn't exactly a blog about me or my family life. But also, because I just couldn't write about what was going on with any...

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02 May 2011

Dribble-free soup: serve the "goodies" and broth separately

Jen's trick for serving soup to little kids, mess-free: First, strain the "goodies" from the soup (chicken, noodles, beans, etc.) and serve them in a bowl. Then, serve the broth in a mug, and let them drink it with a cut-down straw. *Forehead smack of "why didn't I think of...

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