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Kids stay safe in busy parking lots, thanks to brilliant parenting hack

Girl in Parking Lot


Ashley Jonkman - published on 06/12/17

Kristen Bell shared a simple trick she learned from her sister-in-law, and moms are crazy over it.

Our lives may not look much like those of Hollywood stars, but when it comes to raising children, there are some things that we all seem to have in common. Hilarious, relatable, and gorgeous mother of two Kristen Bell recently shared a very clever (albeit simple!) parenting tip to help keep kiddos safe, and her #momhack is going viral with it’s brilliance.

“Hands on the circle,” is the phrase Bell (whom my children will recognize as the voice of Anna from Frozen) uses to keep daughters Lincoln, 4 and Delta, 2, safely in one place when loading or unloading her vehicle and confronting a challenging parking lot head-on. The “circle” is the car’s gas cap cover; yours might be a square, but it’s the same principle.

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A post shared by kristen bell (@kristenanniebell)

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Parking lots transform into treacherous and harrowing danger zones as soon as children are able to walk on their own (not to mention unbuckle themselves and open car doors unassisted), which is why The Good Place star Kristen Bell’s safety tip is truly advantageous for busy parents everywhere.

My husband and I recently celebrated the birth of our third child, and now I am a mother of three, ages 4 and under. I can’t tell you how many times strangers have knowingly (sympathetically, perhaps?) informed me that I have my “hands full.” Never was a truer statement uttered — my hands are indeed full to the brim, at almost any minute of every day. Whether it’s an armful of groceries, children, or laundry, I can always use a good #momhack, to help me out, and this one’s perfect for me and my littles.

Bell, who shares parenting duties with her husband, actor Dax Shepherd, credits this genius tip to her sister-in-law, and says the trick has “thus far kept all kiddos safe from any oncoming traffic” while she unloads the trunk. Even if Kristen Bell’s life may look different from those of us driving minivans in the suburbs or SUVs in the country, we all want to keep our babies safe, and this little tip is the perfect way to include our little ones in the process. Giving them a task allows them to take ownership of their own safety, and fosters communication in a potentially dangerous situation.

Bell, who has been open about how difficult marriage can be, breastfeeding in public and other parenting issues, has certainly hit on a subject that resonates with many parents, yet again — her post has already garnered almost 150,000 likes on Instagram in just a couple days. So next time you’re navigating a busy parking lot and trying to manage a kid or two (or three!), remember this little tip, and make sure your kiddos know exactly where that circle is!


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