When I polled my crew on Instagram at the beginning of the year, there was overwhelming demand for all things shortcuts, hacks, survival tricks and parenting tips. I actually love learning and adapting hacks from other moms myself, so I'm introducing a new series on Olive and Tate called Mom Hack Mondays!
To kick things off, I'm really excited to share what has proven to be a knock out hack. Part motherhood moment, laundry short cut and school morning savior, meet our Closet Buckets.
First let me say that this is an adaption for the viral Pinterest pin that went nuts right before school started this year. You may remember a handing shoe rack (like this one!) that was marked with the days of the week and filled with school clothes. Ya'll, I actually went out and bought a hanging shoe rack, only to come home and realize that we have built in closet systems in the kid's rooms (duh).
Because we couldn't rock the hanging system, I scrounged around the house and found 5 dollar aisle buckets we already owned, gift tags and twine we had on hand and made it work. To my surprise, the bucket system is actually a better hack than the original, because the buckets can be easily moved to the laundry room/area to be filled. This system also makes it very easy for you to encourage your child to fill the buckets themselves, with your supervision.
Ok, here's our set up and how we make it happen:
Every Sunday, I take out my 5 year old's buckets and fill them with underwear, socks, pants, shirt, sweater if needed, etc.
I make sure to check his school calendar and include any special things he may need - for example, he has spirit days on Fridays and wears a school shirt or school colors. On Thursday, he takes Karate and I pack his Karate Gi in a small bag and place it in the Thursday bin. If he heads out on a field trip or needs special shoes for gym, all of that is taken care of via the bins with plenty of prep time.
Every school morning, my son get's himself dressed, starting with the Monday box and working his way through the week. He can read the tags on each box, but I also set them up in order so little hands could just grab the next full box as the week moves along. We started this system as a way to encourage our five year old to get himself completely ready in the morning, which has been a big success, but I didn't truly anticipate all of the other benefits.
Laundry Bucket Hack Stats:
Mornings are easy and smooth - no one in my family is at their nicest first thing in the am so anything that can take the edge off is a must. My son gets up when his OK to wake clock lights up, get's himself dressed (asks for help when needed, of course), then heads out to the breakfast table.
I hate putting away laundry - this makes it easier. I bring out all of the buckets to wear I'm folding laundry and just toss in the needed items assembly line style.
I never miss a theme day or needed item. By setting the buckets up each week, I give myself plenty of time to ensure that I have theme day/activity appropriate gear in each box. There is no scrambling the night before or morning of. The box is locked and loaded!
When I travel or someone else needs to take over the morning routine, the morning remains seamless.
My five year old is learning even more responsibility by helping in the Bucket process, including looking at his week ahead, helping to put away laundry and being responsible for grabbing his karate bag out of his Bucket and placing it in his book bag on the day of.
We choose not to make weekend buckets, he is at his discretion to wear what he'd like on the weekends - no need to truly plan or organize ahead!
Want to create the system yourself? Here's what you need:
I'll be back soon with my Toddler School Clothes Hack!