I recently chatted with Lifestyle expert and author, Tara Aronson who shared her survival guide tips for busy moms this winter!
Candace Rose: Statistics show that 72% of moms with children over one-year-old work and moms with a full-time job spend 13 hours a day working at the office or at home completing family chores. What can moms do to lighten the load?
Tara Aronson: "Well you know mornings are especially busy for moms. We're trying to get out the door to work, we're trying to get the kids to school and it's crucial that everybody gets out on time but it's also crucial that we eat breakfast and I think a lot of us tend to skip when we really shouldn't, so that's when a mom needs a plan b. My plan b is Carnation Breakfast Essentials– super easy to use, just pour some milk, put the powder into a cup, it also comes where it's actually ready to drink, so it makes it even easier. But I really feel good about the fact that it's got twice the protein of an egg, it's got twice the calcium of yogurt and it has 21 or 23 essential vitamins and minerals and it's 76 cents a serving. Who's not liking that."
CR: What are some great new ways to ease stress?
TA: "Well, I think technology can really be a friend to today's mom. For example I just got the LG Optimus M and that's an Android smartphone from metroPCS. I can go online unlimited throughout the month. I can check the calendar, you've got more than 100,000 apps that can help out in every part of your day and it's $229 which is very reasonable and no annual contract required, which I love. At $50 a month, it can get you organized and it's super easy to use. I think mom's should really consider getting into the 21st century, because I actually have a couple friends who aren't online yet! And speaking of online, there's a great game that I'm now playing with my kids after they do chores. It's called Bejeweled 3. They did a clinical study of players, they actually tested their response to this game and found it reduced their stress by about 47%, so I'm in good company and 1 of 300 million women worldwide who are playing. They have this new version 3 and it has an expanded zen mode, this is designed for stress reduction but you can customize the ambient sounds. They've got mantras, you can even do breathing modulation. It does everything but clean your house and you can get it at popcap.com. It's a great stress reliever, I do have to say. It's like a power nap!
CR: I love Bejeweled. Is that the same one that's available on facebook?
TA: I don't know? I haven't seen it on facebook, but probably.
CR: Play Bejeweled Blitz, you will be addicted!
TA: You're already a fan, this is good!
CR: How do you suggest involving the kids in making helping out around the house fun?
TA: Well, I think the kids need to have chores almost as soon as they're able to toddle off. There's little things that they can do, of course as they get older it makes sense to be giving them more chores with more responsibility because one day they're going to leave home and unless you plan to go to college with them and do their laundry, it really makes sense to assign chores. It's not just about the chores, it's about teaching them the lifestyle skills that they're going to need.
CR: Do you have any tips on clearing out clutter and cleaning?
TA: When it comes to clutter I find that if you don't have something with boundaries everything that ends up throughout the day suddenly starts to cover all your surfaces. With that said I'm a real big fan of baskets, which are great boundaries. I have them throughout the house. I've got one at the bottom of the stairs, so I come in, dump the mail there, keys, you know the kids will do the same thing. It makes it easier for us when we're looking for something, we all know where to go. Also the secondary thing is I just make one trip upstairs instead of keep going up and down every time I find something out of place.
CR: Where can we go for more information?
TA: You can get all the information I've talked about and more at yournewscafe.com.