A Simple Start Tips

We're asking you the question "What simplifies your life?" Share your tips and tricks on making life a little more simple. Tim and Pam will select 10 tips and the submitter will receive one of 10 great prizes! Share your tip here or view the others below.

Here are the tips we've received:

Outgrown Clothes

Category: Organization

This is a trick my daughter was just sharing with me that she has learned. When it comes to storing her children's outgrown clothes, she puts the nice clothes she can reuse or sell in a plastic tote and puts the more worn clothes (that could still be worn as play clothes) in a garbage bag. When the tote is full, she takes it to the upstairs storage. When the garbage bag is full, she gives it to a friend or takes it to the Salvation Army or Goodwill. This saves her a lot of hassle when it comes time for a yard sale, because she doesn't have to sit down and take the time to sort through everything...and sometimes she can even price it by the tote.

Sweet Tooth

Category: Other

When I bake sweets I am always tempted to "test" the batter and the frosting along the way. In order to prevent my sweet tooth from taking over I cut up fruit and put it in a bowl. When I feel the need to taste my masterpiece I pop in a piece of fruit instead. I find that fruit doesn't go well with sweets and I have now successfully made cookies without ever licking my finger or testing the batter!

Kids and Medication

Category: Parenting

We as parents all know that children all to often do not enjoy the taste of medicines which obviously can lead to frustration, awful faces and tears. I want to share a simple trick I have used. Give the child a teaspoon of chocolate syrup (coats the tongue, with the bonus of being a yummy treat for the child!), then the medicine, then another teaspoon of chocolate syrup. I have found this makes medicine time when needed, a little easier. The children may even look forward to it. I guess you could quote Mary Poppins on this one "a spoon full of sugar helps the medicine go down......." : )

Don't Delay

Category: Time Management

 If you think about doing something, then just do it! Don't delay it if you can help it, because you will probably forget what it is you want to do almost immediately. If you can't do it right away, jot it down somewhere that you will look (i.e. not a random piece of paper or mail) - I have a "To Do" list on my iTouch that I use.

Less Dishes

Category: Housekeeping

When all the kids were home, they had a bad habit of using a new glass, plate, cup, fork, etc every time they needed one. My husband suggested that I cut down on the "availability" of each of those, so I left just enough cups, plates,etc to accommodate each family member. The rest I "put up" but was readily available if we had company. The kids had to rescue there cup, because there wasn't 15 available anymore. It drastically cut down dirty dishes.

Let Go, Let God

Category: Faith

Mind your own business and Let go and let God by focusing on the only person you can affect or change...Yourself. Love and support others but allow them the respect and opportunity to grow from their own experiences in life. This concept has not only simplified my life in 2012 but greatly improved my relationships and provided an unbelievable peace by stepping aside and truly letting God do His job.

Warm Water

Category: Other

Mornings are HECTIC at our home with getting kids off to school and everyone off to work too! My husband and I take our showers in the evening, so my daughter and her two children can have their showers in the morning. Everyone gets plenty of warm water and we all get out the door on time without getting up so extra early! I sleep better when I am clean showered going to bed. Plus, I save time on laundry when my sheets stay clean longer.


Category: Housekeeping

I lay out everyone's clothes that they are going to wear the next day the night before. Everything down to the undies and shoes. That way in the morning we aren't spending time trying to pick out what to wear. I have baskets set up in the utility room for laundry.  My soon to be 5 year old and 6 year old have been able to sort laundry since they were 2 :) One basket is for jeans, one for darks, one for lights and one for the bleach load. It makes it so much easier because I can just dump the load from the basket right int the washer throw a Tide POD in and go.  No more spilling laundry soap or using too much or not enough.

Cleaning Windows

Category: Housekeeping

When cleaning windows and mirrors use a page from the newspaper for the final wipe down. (Wear rubber gloves so that newsprint does not build up on your hands.) There is something in the newspaper that cleans well so that no streaks remain on the cleaned surface.


Category: Housekeeping

If you spray silicone and let it dry on your snow shovel the snow will not stick. This also works on lawn mower blades and other tools!