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Five Tips Friday #1: Easy Lifehack Ideas

Hi there friends! I’m excited about my new series…Five Tips Friday.  I am always on the look-out for easier or more efficient ways to do everyday tasks and tools that help make life easier.  When presented with a ‘need’ or ‘want’, I love noodling better ways to accomplish that task or meet that need…also known as ‘a lifehack.’

Lifehack: a strategy or technique adopted in order to manage one’s time and daily activities in a more efficient way.  

I hope to bring you Five Ideas (or lifehack) on the First Friday of Each Month…undoubtedly you might already employ some of these ideas, but hopefully every now and again I can bring you a nugget you hadn’t considered before.

AND…MOST IMPORTANTLY…I am ALWAYS in the market for a new lifehack or idea, so if you have noodled a way to do something easier or cheaper…please consider passing it on. I’d love to incorporate tips from our readers into the Five Tips Friday list.  Email  your tips to [email protected]

So, if it…solves a problem, makes life easier, is a less expensive way to do something, saves you money…bring it!

lifehack 1

I don’t know about you, but I like to have a place for everything and everything in its place and my car is no exception. It seems I always had pens or pencils rattling around in the console getting in the way or I just couldn’t find one when I needed it. So…I tucked a toilet paper roll into the little rectangular slot that most cars seem to have and use it to hold my pens/pencils/emery boards.  

When I realized that this very simple trick really worked, I ‘jazzed’ my toilet paper roll up with a scrap of fabric and coated it with modge podge to keep it sturdier and easier to wipe down when needed. My current ‘pen holder’ is still the first one I made and traveled with me when I got my new car 4 years ago.

lifehack 2

I take medications and supplements daily, as does the rest of my family.  Since these are usually taken with our breakfast, I keep the lot in a basket in a drawer in my kitchen. By writing the name of the supplement or whose medication it is on the lid, I am easily able to pull out just what I need.

lifehack 3

Related to Tip 2…I have an idea to help you manage your daily vitamins and/or medication. I wrote everyone’s initial with a Sharpie in the bottom of the dish and so it’s just flat out easy to keep whose is whose straight. I got these little 2″ by 2″ by 1″ dishes years ago at World Market, though I can’t find them on their website anymore. Amazon has several different varieties; here are a couple similar in size to the ones I have...in melamine, ceramic and metal.

I know there are also those plastic pill organizers, but often just the kid’s multivitamin filled the whole compartment, so I was looking for something just a little bigger, but not too big.

Five easily doable tips, tricks, tools or lifehack ideas that will help make your days just a little more efficient and productive.

I also use them for when we have a medication that you need to take multiple times a day. I just dole out the doses in the morning and not only does it remind us when to take our next dose, but keeps us straight if we can’t remember…”did I take the one after lunch…?”

I use both wine glass markers and Sharpies to write on the bowls. 

N&N Tip: While Sharpies are considered ‘permanent’, the ink can easily be removed with rubbing alcohol!

lifehack 4

Truth time…does this remind you of anyone? 

I can’t tell you how many times I’d construct a huge list, get to the store only to discover I left the list at home and then call home so that someone could read my list back to me while I wrote it down on the back of whatever receipts I had floating in my purse.

That is until I started making my list on my phone. I use a free app called Grocery IQ.

Just a fair warning, the main reason it can be free is that if you put in…say…’Ice Cream’ you might see a little pop-up add for Breyer’s Ice Cream. But those little ads have really never bothered me or reduced the functionality of the app to me.

One of the things I like about it stores everything in your history, so if you buy pretty much the same things week to week, it’s as simple as going to your history and adding those items to your store list.  You can have multiple store lists and when you check something off of your list, it puts it in your ‘cart’ and tabulates your bill.  If you do want the function of tabulating your bill, you will need to take some time to put in the cost of your items. I slowly built that database of prices up…I’d keep the receipts in my purse and while I was waiting in the carpool line or at the doctor’s office, I’d just put the prices in.  

I’ve been using it for years and have never had any glitches with it. Grocery IQ app is available for both iOS and Android phones.

lifehack 5

I like to get many of our shirts, pants and dresses out of the dryer while still damp and hang them to avoid wrinkles and to extend the life of the items. However, I am forever putting clothes in dryer with the intention of just letting them spin for 5 minutes and then getting sidetracked and coming back an hour later to dry and wrinkled clothes. 

Five easily doable tips, tricks, tools or lifehack ideas that will help make your days just a little more efficient and productive.

I found this little timer with a magnet on the back (probably at Walmart) which sticks to my dryer.  I can set it for 5 or 10 minutes and then be reminded to pop back in and get the clothes I want out of the dryer before they become too dry.

So, I hope at least one of these little life hacks might make a task or chore of yours just a tad easier. And please, do share any life hacks that have solved a problem for you or just made your chore a trifle easier.

Five easily doable tips, tricks, tools or lifehack ideas that will help make your days just a little more efficient and productive.

Thanks again for spending a few minutes of your busy day with me today. Know that you are appreciated and that I welcome each and every comment that comes my way.

If you want to make sure you don’t miss future content, pop your email in the beige box up on the right or click here.  
I usually send out 2-3 emails a week, so I won’t inundate your inbox…believe me, I’m sensitive to an overflowing email inbox!

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  1. Great hack list – it’s those supplement/vitamin bottles that drive me crazy and I’m the worst at remembering to take them. Will have to give the lid label a try. So my hack is simple – freeze water in a tin can, after frozen place in a ziplock bag and use it to keep drinks cool. We work at our property where there is no electricity and this little tip kept our water and coke cold for the entire day without the mess of water going everywhere. Have a great weekend!

    1. Hey Carole…such a simple thing but makes doling them out so much easier. And thanks for your suggestion! Will come in especially handy this time of year.

      Many wishes for a lovely weekend.

      Hugs, Lynn

  2. Hi Lynn,
    I love the idea for organizing in the car. We are always looking for a pen or something to write with. They tend to roll around in all the wrong places and can never be found when needed. Thank you for sharing!

    1. My little toilet paper roll pencil holder is so very simple, but so very handy! I’d be lost without it. I fill it up periodically as my son tends to grab a pen or pencil from it as he dashes out of the car on his way to school

      Hope you are settling in…can’t believe we’re at Haven in 2 weeks.

      Hugs, Lynn

  3. I have also been guilty of forgetting the grocery list at home Lynn. I will definitely need to check out this app. Have a great weekend!

    1. Oh Mary, I fear we have all been. I hope that you like that app…it’s been a life saver to me.

      Wishing you a fantastic weekend.

      Hugs, Lynn

      1. We keep a grocery running list on a white board on the refrigerator. I take a picture of it with my phone and then go to the store…. works out very well.

        1. Lyn, that’s a fantastic idea! Your tip does have the added benefit of being available to everyone in the home. Thanks for sharing it.

          Have a great day, Lynn

  4. It used to be that once I wrote something on the list I would remember it. Unfortunately, those days are long gone so thanks for the tip about the app. 🙂

  5. Lynn, I love to read life hacks! Just something about having a peek into the ways that others deal with everyday things is so intriguing.

    1. You and me both Stacey…I used to devour those little tip books and I love finding new and easier ways to do things. Thanks for stopping by…looking forward to seeing you at Haven!

  6. Wow, these are great! I love them all! I can’t wait to try them out. I’m excited to see your upcoming lifehacks. It’s always so exciting to learn about new ones!

    1. Thanks Carolann! I’m always noodling easier, more efficient ways to do things…kinda like a game for me.l

      Thanks for swinging by.

      Hugs, Lynn

  7. Thanks for the tips Lynn! Im definitely going to do the toilet paper pencil holder, and the timer. I’m like you and like to pull my clothes out before their completely dry, and I get busy and forget to pull them out before they dry.

    1. Oh good Linda! I am so glad you will be able to use some of these. I imagine you are someone who has thought of plenty of good ideas, so I’m thrilled I might have suggested a few you haven’t thought of yet!
      Have a great day!

      Hugs, Lynn

  8. Love the tips! I use the timer on my phone when baking or wanting to time the dryer. I seem to always have it handy. Love the knitting too. Thanks a bunch!

    1. Hi Lesley, I use my phone timer and reminders frequently as well…even to remind me just to drink water! And so glad you are enjoying the knit projects! One of my go-to hobbies.
      Thanks for stopping by and leaving your tips and kind words.
      Have a great weekend.

      Hugs, Lynn

  9. Thanks so much Lynn. I especially love the vitamin and car pen holding ideas. Brilliant! Have a wonderful weekend!!

    1. Thanks so much Suzanne! I did have a wonderful weekend and I’m glad you found those little tips helpful! If you have other ideas, do pass them on. Always collecting ideas.

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