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Receiving blankets may be my favorite product ever made! For most parents, they are just ordinary baby gear that are packed away when the babies are no longer babies. But, I’m here to tell you, if you do this, you are missing out! Receiving blankets are the parenting equivalent of duct tape: they are versatile, take up very little room, and can be a lifesaver whenever you are in a pinch. Even though my son is 6 years old, I still carry one with me everywhere I go. And, I’m sure, that 12 years from now when we are moving him into his first college dorm room, I will still have one close by! So, here is my list of clever hacks for receiving blankets.
1. A Blanket
I know, real original, huh? But, most people don’t think about using a receiving blanket for anyone other than a baby. While it’s not going to provide full body coverage for an adult, it can be very useful as a blanket for a child riding in a car seat. I have used a receiving blanket before to cover my legs when I’ve gotten cold sitting in my office. You can also use it similar to a shawl to cover your arms when chilly.
2. A Pillow
Because of their small size, receiving blankets make great travel pillows. Just scrunch it up and put under your head for a quick snooze. This is also super helpful when you have a child trying to sleep in a car seat or on stadium bleachers.
3. A Sun Screen
There is nothing worse than getting a sun burn on your arms on the first day of a weekend-long baseball tournament. If this happens, you can use the receiving blanket to block the sun from your burnt skin. I’ve used it to block the sun from shining in my son’s eyes too. If driving, you can put it up over a window to keep the sun away from your child’s eyes.
4. A Reflection Blocker
More than once, we have been at an outdoor sporting event when my son was just not into the game. He would want to play on one of our phones instead. The problem was that he couldn’t see the screen because the sun was creating such a bad reflection. I used the blanket to block the reflection so he could play on the phone. Easy peasy!
5. A Seat Cover
Whenever you find yourself in a position of having to sit on a hot bench or the dirty ground, a receiving blanket can easily be a seat cover. I have used this at games when the seats were too hot for my son. I’ve also used my blanket at baseball camp so I wouldn’t have to sit on the ground.
6. A Privacy Screen
A baby blanket won’t do much good if you need a changing screen for an adult. However, it can be a great privacy screen for a child. And if you’re anything like me, more than once you have had a child who needed to pee out on the side of the highway!
7. Cover for Your Goods
When traveling, there are times that you have to leave some valuables in the car unattended. Use a small blanket to cover those valuables when you get out. Out of sight, out of mind is a good approach to protect your things from being stolen. If thieves can’t see your things, they are less likely to break into your car.
8. A Carry All
When you are off on your adventures, you may find yourself in a position where you need to carry a bunch of things. If you’re not prepared, you could have a problem. In these cases, you can use a receiving blanket to carry your stuff. If you put all of your things, whether they are apples or sand toys, in the center of the blanket, you can then tie up the corners to make a knapsack for carrying them.
There are some times when you get caught in the rain without an umbrella. When that happens, just grab your blanket. You can use it to cover your head to give you some protection from the rain. You can also use it to cover your young ones too.
10. Clean up a Spill
Anyone who has kids knows that spills are just a part of parenting! Sometimes, they happen when you are the least prepared for them. When you find yourself in this position, it’s good to have a receiving blanket on hand. You can use it as a towel to clean those spills right up!
11. Dry Off a Wet Seat
More than once, I have went to a baseball game right after a rain and found a wet seat. With my handy little blanket, I can quickly dry off the seat before sitting down. No wet bottoms for this family!
12. A Bib
Kids tend to be messy eaters. Even when they have outgrown bibs, you sometimes need one to keep their good clothes from being covered in food. Tie the blanket around your child’s neck as a make-shift bib to keep those clothes nice and neat.
13. A Napkin
Sometimes when you are on a road trip, you swing by a drive thru only to find after pulling away that they didn’t give you any napkins! How annoying. When you are in a pinch, you can use the receiving blanket as a napkin to clean your hands.
14. Major Mess Cleaner
My son is prone to car sickness. There have been many times that he has thrown up in the car. Sometimes, I have nothing to clean up that kind of a mess! This is another example of a time when I am so thankful to have a receiving blanket and a bottle of water with me. It is a lifesaver when cleaning up puke.
First Aid Kit
15. A Sling
If you have an accident-prone member of your family, you may find yourself in need of a sling at some point. If you don’t have anything else, you can fold the receiving blanket up to make a temporary sling until you can get the accident victim to medical treatment.
16. Nose Bleed Stopper
Sometimes, you get a nose bleed when you have nothing to stop it. If this happens, you can use your receiving blanket to stop the bleeding, at least until you can get something that will work better.
17. Prop It Up
With some injuries, the best medicine is to just prop the injured body part up for a while. If you are at the stadium or ball field when this happens, you can use the blanket to serve as a pillow to prop up that leg or arm. Similarly, if you have someone who needs to lay down due to sickness, you can use it to prop up their head.
18. Ice Pack
There are times when you need an ice pack, but don’t have anything to put the ice in. In those situations, use your blanket as an ice pack. Put the ice in the middle, wrap the blanket up around it, or tie the corners together, and you have an instant ice pack.
Time to Play
19. A Cape
When you are trying to entertain a little one but are out of ideas, break out the blanket for some help. You can tie it around your child’s neck to make a cape. With a cape, your little one can be a superhero, a wizard, or even a bird!
20. Baby Doll Blanket
If you have a little girl who loves her baby dolls, you can use your blanket to extend that play too. Give it to your princess for her to use as a baby doll blanket. It should keep her entertained for hours!
21. A Partial Tent
A receiving blanket isn’t big enough to make a fort or a full tent, but it can make a partial tent. If you have a kiddo that likes things like that, you can drape or tie the blanket between two chairs or legs of a table to make a partial tent or fort for playing.
22. A Hobo Sack
If you have a stick of some sort, you can tie the blanket up in a knapsack around the stick to make a hobo sack. Your munchkins can then pretend to go on a long adventure. This can be a fun, original game for them, which may help you to cure their boredom.
There you have it: 22 clever hacks for receiving blankets! It is a great versatile product that can be helpful in lots of situations way beyond the baby stage. I keep one with me at all times because you never know when you will need to use it. I keep mine either in my car or rolled up in my purse. I am always thankful that I have it with me. Try it, and I bet that you will also find it to be one of the best things you ever did! Happy travels!