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Time-Saving Tips for Busy Parents

Smart strategies and clever shortcuts for when it seems like there aren’t enough hours in the day.

Smart Advice

Moms’ Guide to Managing Time
Why do most moms feel they’re doing so much and accomplishing so little? Three women break down their most monstrous times of day (for one, it’s a weekend—doubly defeating) and get expert help to make it all a little less scary. 

Fruit smoothie in blender pitcher

18 Time-Saving Tips

Streamline your day with these tried and true strategies.
Photo: Meredith Heuer

Fast Beauty: 16 Smart Expert Tricks

Pros share their tricks for looking great whether you have one minute or 10.
Photo: Plamen Petkov

How Readers Have Freed Up Their Time

Real Simple readers reveal their strategies for eliminating obligations from their schedules.
Photo: Kate Sears

Make-Ahead Meal Shortcuts

Four things to make and freeze when you have time, for days when you don't.
Photo: Keate
Fruit smoothie in blender pitcher
Woman washing hair
Day planner
Kitchen timer

Great Gear

MZ Wallace bag

The Best Mom-Friendly Purses and Diaper Bags
Road-tested ultra-durable totes and diaper bags so stylish, no one will know you’re lugging a just-in-case outfit, a week’s supply of Cheerios, and a Magna Doodle. 

Goodbyn Bynto Lunch Box

Smart Lunch Gear
Whether you’re packing lunch for your kids, or brown-bagging it for yourself, these storage containers will make it easier.

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Ornament storage box

Attic Organizing Checklist

The attic is a natural repository for everything from heirlooms to out-of-season apparel. Keep it all safe and orderly by following these steps.

  • Assess the clutter. Start by creating three categories: keep, donate, and toss. As you work your way through the items in the attic, assign each one to a category. If you rarely use a piece, it’s probably a good candidate to either donate or toss.
  • Donate or toss. Contact local charities and arrange for a pickup of items you would like to donate; put the toss items out with the trash or recycling.
  • Edit the belongings you’re keeping. Winnow the keep pile even further, creating new categories, such as out-of-season clothing, tax returns, etc. Allot each category a location: Tax returns might be assigned to a plastic storage box placed in a corner of the attic; sporting equipment might be sent downstairs to a wall cabinet or a bin in the garage.

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