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There are books upon books on parenting, but the best advice doesn’t always come from a psychologist. Actually, the best parenting advice comes from crafty parents who know the ropes of parenting and are nice enough to share with the rest of us.

When the going gets tough, the best thing to do is get creative. Don’t be afraid to improvise and who knows, you might come up with a useful parenting hack of your own. If you have a couple up your sleeve, feel free to share them with us in the comments. Below, I will list 8 strange, yet brilliant parenting tips you aren’t going to believe you never knew before.

1. Use plastic snaps to keep socks together in the wash.

One mom on Twitter bought little plastic snap buttons and then attached one to each sock. Before throwing them in the laundry, she snapped them together. Goodbye days of missing sock twins.

2. Make monster spray to help with the ‘monsters’ under the bed.

Does your little one hate going to bed, because they fear the monsters under their bed or closet? Make a clear, empty spray bottle into ‘Monster’ Spray. Simply decorate the bottle and put something in it that is non-toxic. Spray to get rid of the monsters.

3. Make use of a cardboard box.

Need to occupy your toddler? Get a giant box and fill it with crayons. Then, set them in there and let them at it.

4. Use a sticker to teach which shoe goes on which foot.

If you are teaching your little one to put on their own shoes, cut a sticker in half and use each half to mark which shoe is which. Then, when they don’t know which shoe is which, show them how it’s like a puzzle.

5. Use box inserts to separate clothes in the basket.

If you have multiple members in your household, get a large laundry basket, and use box inserts to separate out sections. Then, use each section to place a different family member’s clothes. Happy folding.

6. Use a baby pool as an impromptu play pen.

Need a playpen in a snap? Go to the local store and buy a blow-up baby pool. Throw in some blankets and toys and voilà.

7. Create a ‘challenge’ to get them moving in the morning.

If you have a hard time getting your kids to get ready in the morning, act like it’s a race and times them. Then, mark their time down on a calendar as their ‘time to beat’ and have them race against each other and their own best time.

8. Stick the straw through the Capri sun to conceal medicine.

If your little one doesn’t want to take medicine, put it in their medicine cup, and then pull out a Capri sun. Poke a hole through and stick the end of the straw into the concealed medicine cup. Tell them to take a sip of juice and watch them gulp down the medicine.

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