Modern mothers are constantly bombarded with deals for devices that will make parenting easier, quicker, or safer. With everything from Mommy & Me classes to baby wipe warmers, its hard to know what things are actually worth your time and money. Here are 5 things you won't find in Babies-R-Us that every mother should invest in; where the payoff far out ways the price tag.
Investment: $5-$15 dollars a month depending on location and cable carrier.
Pay Off: actually knowing what's going on in the adult world and not just wondering why Kai-Lan and Dora don't play with kids of their own species.
2) a Crock-Pot: This is the most wonderful Mommy-time-saving device EVER!! You can make hundreds of different things and have a home cooked meal every night. Just dump in the ingredients in the morning and go about your day. No more 2pm stress about what you're going to make for dinner. Like the DVR, its biggest benefit is freeing up your time. It's multitasking where you don't have to do anything.
Investment: $20-$80 dollars depending on size and features.Pay Off: being able to give your family a home-cooked every night without standing in the kitchen for hours.
3) a Detachable Shower Head. You'll be amazed at how much easier it is to rinse shampoo off your kids with this device. Let them play in the tub and when you're ready, soap them up and hose them down! An adjustable spray nozzle will help to make cleaning other things a breeze as well. A soft spray for wiping down a dirty play mat and a hard stream for getting dried peas from a high chair seat cover. As an added bonus, it will help you recharge quicker and more fully by massaging the day away.
Investment: $10-$40 depending on style.Pay Off: being able to quickly clean just about anything - including your toddler.
4) a Really, Really Good Friendship. Whether or not they have kids of their own, a really good friend is priceless to a stressed out Mom. Having someone in your life that understands if you're late due to a diaper situation and doesn't care that you haven't had time to shower in two days, goes a long way in helping you keep grounded. They'll babysit your kid, listen to you
when you have a meltdown and make sure you get out of the house once in a while.
Investment: a few hours a week.
Pay Off: preserving your sanity.
5) You. The most important thing that you can invest in as a parent is yourself and yet it's the one thing that almost all mothers let go of. Keeping some sparkle of who you were before you were Mommy, helps hold on to your own identity and not just feel like the maid, chauffeur, and personal chef to the little prince. Spending some time focusing on things you love and accomplishing what you want in life will prevent you from becoming resentful, allow you to have experiences and expertise to share with your children, and help define you as something other than "mother" in their eyes.
Investment: as much as you can give without feeling like you're neglecting your family.
Pay Off: securing your identity.