Best Ideas to Help Make Life Easier (and Pamper Yourself, Too)

Days run together, your family vies for the WIFI and everyone turns to YOU when the dinner hour approaches, EVERY NIGHT. It may be time to treat yourself to some new athleisure wear, hand cream to sooth the redness from constant washing, or something to just make life at home with your family a bit easier. Now, take advantage of some amazing sales…we will update this post as we hear about them.

We are a reader-based site and receive compensation from purchases made through these links. Thank you for supporting us and our writers.

Workout/WFH wear

The clothes we work in, workout in, wear for Zoom meetings, and possibly sleep in, too, have all become one and the same. Here are our favorite brands to consider if you’re in need of replenishment.

Nordstrom is a one-stop shop for workout gear, comfy clothes to wear during the day, sleepwear and so much more. They have amazing sales going on now – with up to 60% off – and free shipping and returns. If there is ANYTHING you and or member of your family needs, this is THE PLACE and this is THE TIME to shop our favorite department store.

Lululemon is the go-to brand for splurging on new workout clothes. I love the style, fit, durable fabric and construction which makes me feel I am getting my money’s worth whenever I buy Lulu leggings.

Lululemon leggings

Athleta has versatile and well-priced apparel that’s available in a wide range of sizes. Check out the leggings with a pocket large enough to stash your phone while you walk 6 feet away from your neighbor. The Athleta site has fantastic ongoing markdowns and free shipping on minimum purchases of $25.

Nike – My old running shoes were worn out so I treated myself to a new pair since walking, with and without the dog, are so important to physical and mental health right now. I was delighted to find that these pretty aqua colored Zoom Nikes on sale. Search the Nike site for shoes, apparel, undergarments and inspiration; you can also find great sales.

Dick’s Sporting Goods is a one-stop shop for workout clothes, fitness gear and almost anything you might buy for yourself and your family that involves movement. They offer curbside contactless pickup if you have a store nearby or free shipping for orders over $49. Lots of great sales here in Dick’s weekly deals.

Feel-Good/Look Good Clothes

I’ve never walked into an Anthropologie without finding something I was intrigued to buy. Now, with stores closed, shop online and take a special look at the Freshly Cut selection – all great things on sale. This cute top would pair well with leggings (or pj bottoms) for your next Zoom call.

Lunya has gorgeous sleepwear, loungewear, and is a brand to check out when you want to indulge in washable silk (really!) and other loungewear that feels amazing to wear.

Kendra Scott is donating 50% of the proceeds of sales of the Everlyne bracelets to the Feeding America network of food banks.

A new, limited edition collection marries simplicity with creativity and features timeless silhouettes in bold and vibrant Marimekko designs. 


Cooking for my family every night, plus making sure that there are groceries in the house for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks….make me feel like I’m a provisions officer. Anything to make my job a little easier is so worth it.

For cleaning up and sanitizing the kitchen, and everywhere, we think these machine washable cloth towels are an ingenious supplement to often sold out paper towels and gross sponges. They are cotton, odor-free and have a gritty surface for scrubbing.

washable cloths

Instant Pot Duo – I had never taken the Instant Pot plunge but gave my college daughter an Instant Pot mini as a gift when she moved into her first college apartment a few years ago. With luck, she was storing it at home and now we are cooking together and I’ve found it to be a lifesaver for making side dishes, soups and stews; you would need a larger model for making main courses, so take a look at the Duo.

Pro tip: discover the ability to find out when essential stores are the busiest and plan to go at non-peak times. Google your store, location and “popular times” to discover when it’s typically less busy.

Home Fitness

Bluetooth Headphones are even more important now so you can listen to your favorite podcast or playlist while exercising at home without bothering other family members. These are highly recommended and very well-priced, at under $30.

A Yoga Mat is a must-have piece of equipment if you’re trying out fitness apps and workouts at home. This one is highly rated and is available in 8 feel-good colors.

Foam Rollers can help relieve joint and muscle pain and improve flexibility. Free instructional online videos are available with TriggerPoint brand rollers.

Health and Beauty

Sephora has two sales a year and the Spring sale begins on April 17. If you are already signed up as a Beauty Insider, great! If not, sign up today for FREE and you will receive 10-20% off purchases. As you buy more Sephora merchandise over time, your status rises and you can unlock even more savings. We may not be able to wander the isles at Sephora at our favorite mall right now, but jump into their site and wander online.


Glossier has become incredibly popular with our daughters, why not check it out for yourself? These sets include a variety of products to try at once.

Try to schedule a mini spa day for yourself with these face masks that come in a set of 12 with 6 options to sample.

Long-lasting nail polish in forgiving shades that conceal the inevitable chips are a popular option and the Infinite Shine collection by OPI lasts up to 11 days.

This Diffuser comes with essential oils, functions as a humidifier, and has 7 colors that can be set to rotate or pick your favorite. Oil fragrances include tea tree, lavender, eucalyptus, lemongrass, peppermint and sweet orange, all made in the USA.

Convert your shower into your private spa with Shower Steamers from Uncommon Goods. These pretty cubes can be used as body scrubs or let them dissolve in the shower; either way, you can savor a moment of restorative aromatherapy. Scents include eucalyptus, mint, lavender, lemongrass and grapefruit.

When all you can think about at the end of a day is taking a nice bath and sipping a glass of wine….here’s a way to make those two things come together. This Wine Holder sticks to the bathroom wall with suction-cups and comes with a PBA-free plastic wine glass.

Hand washing is a constant for all of us and so are dry, chapped and red hands. Aquaphor ointment has become my salvation and I keep a tube with the unique touch-free applicator at my desk to apply to the tops of my hands, frequently. Ointment helps retain moisture and heals skin better than creams but is a bit messy which is why the applicator is so practical.

If you prefer a hand cream, O’Keefe’s Working Hands is a top seller.

For the guys in your family, there will come a time when a haircut is a necessity and you are called on to help. This Remington 15-piece Haircut and Beard-Trimming Kit has multiple blade options which giving amateur barbers all they need to approximate desired length.

Tips for Reading

Reading on a Kindle means you have immediate access to books, especially important now that ordering actual books may be delayed with Amazon delivery. The latest generation is lighter, waterproof and offers double the storage of earlier ones.


If you’re looking for book recommendations, discover this amazing podcast, Moms Don’t Have Time to Read Books, by our friend, Zibby Owens. She has interviewed hundreds of authors in every genre, including us for our Grown and Flown book! (which is also available on Kindle.)

Grown and Flown book

Fun and Family Games

One major upside to our stay at home life is that we have a chance to spend time with the people we love the most – our partners and children. Want to find a few new games for this together time? Here are some that our G&F Parents are buying:

Ravensburger Puzzels

There’s a reason why this puzzle brand is the number one in THE WORLD – the quality of the pieces and artistry of the images are amazing.

Czech Code Names

Exploding Kittens

Exploding kittens

Left Right Center

Left Right Center

Jax Sequence

Home Office

With your family at home, the concept of “home office” takes on a new definition. Whether you have claimed the kitchen table, bedroom, basement, or anywhere with decent WIFI, here are a few things that might make your space work harder for you.

A Phone Charger that will not be “borrowed” by a family member and will be there when you need it. This one, by top-brand Anker, charges faster, too, than the cord that came with your phone.

It might be time to break down and buy a Computer Desk. This one costs less than $100, has two grommets for cables and a slim profile.

Here are a few things that can be helpful to you and your family NOW and could definitely be useful in a dorm or first apartment, LATER. These are all highly-rated.

Power Strip/Surge Protector

power strip

Noise-Cancelling Headphones

Anker headphones

Dimmable Desk Lamp with USB Port

Tao Tronics desk lamp


bed pillow Fan

fan in room

and don’t forget our favorite, the blue IKEA bag!

IKEA blue bag

Photo credit (@SmitBruins for Twenty20)

About Grown and Flown

Mary Dell Harrington and Lisa (Endlich) Heffernan are the co-founders of Grown and Flown the #1 site for parents of teens, college students and young adults, reaching millions of parents every month. They are writers (Lisa is a New York Times bestselling author), moms, wives and friends. They started the Grown and Flown Parents Facebook Group and are co-authors of Grown and Flown: How to Support Your Teen, Stay Close as a Family, and Raise Independent Adults (Flatiron Books) now in paperback.

Read more posts by Grown and Flown

Don't miss out!
Want more like this? Get updates about parenting teens and young adults straight to your inbox.