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Comfy Car Rides

Here are some products I recently discovered that can make the trip smoother
Comfy Car Rides

We’ve spent many hours with the kids in the car over the years. Here are some products I recently discovered that can make the trip smoother.

We often schedule our long rides with some daytime hours and some nighttime hours so we can have some quiet while the younger kids sleep. This pillow will help avoid that dreaded crick in the neck.
INFANZIA Kids Chin Supporting Travel Neck Pillow
$17 on Amazon


This relatively inexpensive purchase will keep kids from complaining about their seat belts and is ultimately safer.
R HORSE 4Pack Seatbelt Pillow Seat Belt Covers for Kids
$18 for 2 sets


I can’t be the only one who makes a resolution to keep my car clean forever after cleaning it out so thoroughly for Pesach. This combination trash can/storage container will help.
HOTOR Car Trash Can
$11 on Amazon


For really long drives use this organizer to keep all of your child’s paraphernalia in easy reach, no matter how old they are. It’s great for big kids who bring an MP3 player, a book, and a flash light, and little kids who bring coloring supplies and little toys.
ONE PIX Backseat Car Organizer Mats
$13 on Amazon


For kids who like having a surface for coloring, or reading, or even eating a snack, this backseat organizer can be very helpful.
Kids Backseat Travel Tray Organizer
$30 on Amazon


Tons of Toys

If you’ll be hosting lots of kids this Yom Tov, there will likely be lots of filling your play room around the clock. Here’s a way to make some order out of the madness. It takes a few minutes of prep — try to get a bigger kid to set it up for you — but it’s well worth it.

Make a chart with two columns. Each of the kids’ names should be in the left column and a blank box on the right of each name with a small piece of Velcro in the middle of the box. Then, write each of the toys in your playroom on a strip of paper with a piece of Velcro on the back of them (OK, maybe not each one, but do it for the popular toys).

When each kid takes out a toy, they should put the strip with the name of the toy next to their name. If there are lots of little kids, put the oldest child in charge of the chart.

The benefits of this are twofold. First, you know who took out each toy when it comes time for clean-up so you don’t have a chorus of “it wasn’t me!” The second is that they’ll have to clean up the first toy before switching to a new one.

Erase Those Stains

Do you have a favorite white tablecloth that you can’t part with but has a stubborn stain?

Spray it with oven cleaner (I use St. Moritz), leave for a couple of hours, and wash as normal. Always test a small unnoticeable area before you start.

The part of the house that gets the most foot traffic (after the kitchen of course) is generally the steps. You may have noticed your carpet is looking a little dingy.

Simply spray the treads well with non-bleach Fantastik and scrub with a hard brush.

—The Balabusta Boss


Dust Buster

We must all share the minor frustration of never quite getting all the crumbs in a sweep job. Here’s a hack that works! Dampen a durable paper towel. Place it on the floor when you’re ready to collect the crumbs, and sweep the crumbs onto the wet paper rather than the dustpan.


Night Activity

We have plenty of long Chol Hamoed nights this Pesach that are wide open and waiting for a game night. Here are some new games for you!

Conversation Jenga

Write conversation starters — “would you rather” statements or funny questions — on post- it notes and stick one on each Jenga piece. Then stack the Jenga pieces normally. Each piece that’s pulled out will require an answer! Alternatively, you can write silly tasks or relay races on each Jenga piece.

Minute to Win It

Classic party games, but get creative here. Some ideas for minute-long tasks you can race each other completing:

—Create a drawing using your mouth to hold the marker

—Peel as many apples as possible

—Fill an empty bottle with as many jelly beans/mini-pom poms/tissues as possible

—Make the highest cup tower

The Spoon Game

Play this game with a classic set of cards and one spoon less than the number of players you’re playing with. Start with four cards. The first person picks a card, decides if he wants to keep it, removes a card, and passes it to the left. The last player places it in the trash pile. Each player tries to get four cards that are the same number. Once this happens, he yells, “spoon!” and everyone tries to grab a spoon. The player without a spoon gets assigned a letter. The last player to spell out “spoons” wins.


Hem Hacks

We’ve all been there — you meant to have something hemmed or tapered before Yom Tov, but in the rush, you didn’t get to it. These two products are always good to have on hand. They don’t last forever, and you’ll probably need to bring it to a seamstress after Yom Tov, but it’s a good Band-Aid.


I’ve used this clothing tape with decent success. It may not be the product of choice to sew up an entire hem, but it’s great for smaller areas and flaps you want to stay closed.

$10 for 30 strips on Amazon


This is a great product but requires an extra minute to iron it on carefully. Create the hem you want, and iron a piece of tape going all the way around the skirt. (This should be done before Yom Tov.)

$2 on Amazon


Do Tell

What do you feed your family (ahem, hungry bochurim) to keep them fueled over Chol Hamoed?

  1. Meat. I cook a huge amount of brisket before Yom Tov (my Pesach meat order is over 30 pounds, and we use most of it!), and the leftovers get eaten when we need a quick post-Chol Hamoed trip dinner. Or a post-dinner dinner.
  2. French fries. With baruch Hashem lots of bochurim, an insane number of bags of frozen fries get cooked and consumed at all hours of the day and night in my home. The boys add salt and ketchup and they’re good to go. My daughter also makes these delicious oven-baked fries, drizzled with oil, salt, pepper, paprika, and oregano, which get eaten in seconds. (First boil the potato slices for five minutes, then spice and bake them at 428°F/220ºC for 20 minutes.)
  3. Not enough. No matter how much I cook, at any given moment of any given day there’s going to be somebody scavenging the fridge insisting there’s nothing to eat.

—Gila Arnold


Long Live Your Makeup

Getting your makeup to stay on for a two- or three-day Yom Tov can be tricky. We asked 200 readers for their tips and tricks. Here are some of their secrets:

To make eyeliner last, I first apply a gel pencil eyeliner (as a primer to make the eyeliner stick) and then a long-lasting liquid eyeliner on top. Similarly with bronzer and blush — use a cream or contour stick and then a powder on top. The idea is you always want to layer with some sort of cream product first and then again with powder or other textures. Lastly, using a setting spray is really helpful and takes away the cakey look that a lot of makeup can create. My favorite, after much trial and error, is Makeup Forever’s Mist & Fix 2.

I color my whole lip with lip liner, then apply lipstick on top.

For great lashes, try Lancôme Idôle Lash with Lancôme Monsieur Big Mascara on top.

A trick for keeping face makeup (foundation, bronzer, etc.) on is putting a slip over your pillow; apparently the material doesn’t rub off makeup like a pillow does. A silk pillowcase also works.

Spray your eyeshadow brush with setting spray before dipping it into the pallet.

I love Revlon lipstick. It lasts the longest! I like to use the Smashbox primer on the rest of my face.

I do best with hydration serum plus moisturizer before priming. Without these, my skin sucks in my makeup instead of the moisture it needs. A 24-hour lip stain is great on top of fully filled in lips.

Use eyeshadow on your eyebrows, it lasts longer than pencil or eyebrow mascara.

Urban Decay’s Primer Potion is the best for keeping eyeshadow on without creasing or fading, along with Stila’s shimmering liquid eyeshadow. Stila’s liquid eyeliner is the longest lasting. For lipsticks, there are lots of long-lasting options — my favorites include Maybelline Superstay 24-hour lipstick, Covergirl Outlast lipstick, and best of all, Maybelline Superstay Matte Ink.

Put on eyelash primer before mascara to help it stick.

Blow-dry lipstick after applying it on your lips.

Catrice Prime and Fine is a great drugstore option for face primer.

I use concealer on my eyelids, two layers of eye shadow, and Ga-De liquid eyeliner for my eyes.

It’s all about the layering. But the longer you wait in between putting the next layer on, the longer your makeup will last.

Some favorite products for long lasting makeup:

Primer — Smashbox Photo Finish

Foundation — Revlon Colorstay

Powder — Essence Banana Powder (under-eye) Rimmel Stay Matte Pressed Powder (face)

Fixing Spray — Mac Prep + Prime Fix+

Mascara — L’Oreal Lash Paradise mascara is budge proof!

The secret is in the application… use tapping motions with a sponge blender and wait for each layer to dry down before the next step.

Setting spray — Once you finish putting on everything aside from mascara, spray well with setting spray, then pat it into your face with a beauty blender. Let it dry, and then apply mascara. For really strong staying power, repeat with another layer of spray and patting down. Two great setting sprays are the NYX spray (matte, not dewy) and the Milani Make It Last spray.

Use eyeshadow on your eyebrows, it lasts longer than pencil or eyebrow mascara.

I prefer to focus on intense skin care as opposed to heavy makeup. I start with a hydrating face mask such as the Rose Face Mask from Fresh or the Hyaluronic Cloud Mask from Peter Thomas Roth. Next, I use Mega-Mushroom Relief & Resilience Soothing Treatment Lotion from Origins followed by Cica Calm Hydration Juice Serum from Elemis. Lastly, I use an overnight moisturizer mask instead of regular moisturizer. I use the My Clarins Re-charge Mask because it blends in like regular moisturizer but it provides long lasting hydration.

After the skincare, I move onto my makeup. I don’t use eye cream before Yom Tov because it doesn’t allow the makeup to stay as long. I apply Ardelle lashes, either number 174, 120, 420, or 421, with duo dark tone glue. I add a bit of Guerlain Mad Eyes Felt Matte Waterproof eyeliner pen. For under eye concealer, I use Hourglass Vanish Airbrush Concealer in birch in the winter and cotton in the summer. Next, I focus on my brows. I use Benefit’s Precisely, My Brow Pencil Waterproof Eyebrow Definer in shade 3, followed by the Benefit Gimme Brow + Volumizing Tinted Eyebrow Gel in shade 3 and the Benefit 24-hour Brow Setter gel in clear.

I use a bit of Stila Convertible Color on both my cheeks and lips. I have these compacts in both petunia and gerbera and either one works beautifully for very fair skin and brown hair.

Careline and Rimmel lipsticks stay on very well.

After foundation and concealer, I use the Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder to set my makeup in place, and then I go ahead with any powder products, like blush, eyeshadow, etc., then set it with the Urban Decay All Nighter setting spray.

Sleep with an eye mask or loose headband over your eyes so you don’t rub off eye makeup in the middle of the night.

For eyeshadow, I use a matte liquid lip stain and mix it in with primer. It stays on way longer than regular eyeshadow.


(Originally featured in Family First, Issue 789)

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