mash: simplifying / consumerism / household / beauty
So I’m headed back to work in about a week. In less than 3 months I will have gone from being a stay-at-home-mom to a rambunctious toddler, to a blogging stay-at-home-mom, to a blogger-and-full-time-working-mom. A bit intimidating? You think! Impossible? I don’t think so.
The Mashed Up household is undergoing lots of changes. We have short term and long term goals. The next year or two is going to be hard–but not impossible. In fact, true to my nature, I’ve come up with a few things I plan on trying in-order to make life easier and simpler. Life hacks for busy moms, and dads, if you will.
Food / Grocery
I do all of the grocery shopping. This isn’t something I expect to change. I did it before Baby Mash was born, while I worked full-time, and will continue to do all the shopping now now. I enjoy it. However, it can be extremely time consuming. Will I have time to hope from store-to-store shopping to shave a dollar or two? I doubt it. Will I have the energy, or mental capacity, to deal with coupons on a large scale. Highly unlikely. After 35-40 hours at a job, 10-20 hours blogging, and uncountable hours running behind Baby Mash, I don’t think I’ll want to do either one of those things, even if I could. So what is a girl to do? Well, I’ve come up with two ideas I plan on trying that I hope will save us either time, money, or both.
1. Pre-planned meals
I plan on trying the services of Blue Apron, Plated, or something like that. In case you never clicked on one of the million of ads you see for them on Facebook, basically these companies make recipes, and mail you step-by-step instructions and all the ingredients you need to prepare the meal. It costs from $12-15 per plate. I estimate that for the Mashed Up household it would be about $24 for dinner. That’s cheaper than going out to dinner, gourmet, and delivered right to your door. Make sure you follow us for upcoming reviews of the services.
2. Buying in bulk
This isn’t a new or revolutionary idea. However, I plan on buying as many things in bulk, and breaking it down into smaller airsealed portions (when applicable) as possible. We’re considering buying a side of beef, and a whole pig. We’ll probably also snag breakfast meats and chicken in bulk too. All from established, reputable butchers, all will high quality product that will end up being the same price or cheaper than buying at the local grocery. And while it will probably take me a whole day to deal with the ordeal of a whole pig or side of beef, I won’t have to do it any more for a whole year. And I also preseason a lot of my meat before I freeze it. That way it is fully marinated whenever it defrosts for use.Can you say time saver? And of course I’ll still be buying from Sam’s club some items in large quantity. Another option I’ll consider is buying in bulk from Amazon. In some cases it’s cheaper–and with free delivery it will be sweet to have it delivered to the front door.
Often times both men and women tend to not take care of themselves when they focus on others. Moms who work out of the home and run a blog, probably find this especially challenging. However, I have two things I’m going to try to help combat that problem.
1. Personal Shopper
You know, it used to be just the posh and rich that had personal shoppers. Not anymore. There are tons of affordable services out there! I, for example, love the looks put together by the folks at Prep 101. And yes, styling sessions, and “lookbooks” can range from $45-120, depending on what you’re looking for. However, I seriously, seriously, hate shopping. Not only do I dread it, a clothes shopping trip can take hours (at the end of which I may or may not be happy with the results). For special occasions, why not have a professional do all the footwork for me? They will not only put together something fabulous in my often hard-to-find sizes within the budget constraints I set for them, but they’ll probably save me a minimum of 3 hours of shopping time. Yeah, that’s worth it to me.
2. Boxes that say “I Love Me”
And as for those casual fillers for my clothes and beauty needs–subscription boxes to the rescue! I’ll have boxes that send more casual clothes, to office chic options. I even have a few boxes in mind for intimates and such. Online orders will also be the spot I go to to get refills of makeup items when I know exactly what shades I like. MAC online–yes please! Keeping at least one subscription box a month that is all about making me look and feel good will help motivate me to keep up my appearance, and have fun doing it.
What life hacks for busy moms and dads and tricks do you have to make everyday chores, routine tasks, and keeping your glamor going, quicker or easier?