Have You Seen This? Time Timer


Hurry up! We’ve gotta leave in 10 minutes…

We’ve said these words approximately 7.5 billion times (just an estimate) to our children. And yet they seem to hear the following words instead, “just keep on doing exactly what you’re doing, don’t change a thing and eventually I’m gonna stop talking and leave the room.”

Can I get an amen?

And if you have kids who deal with attention, focus and/or anxiety issues, it feels like everyone’s blood pressure skyrockets even more at those time sensitive points like getting out the door for school or making it to an activity on time.

Something that was recommended to me awhile back and I’ve since shared with other parents is the Time Timer. Unlike other timers, it has a red display that slowly winds down, offering a visual cue for kids. If I set it on the breakfast table, my daughter can look at it and see the time actually winding down. If she gets distracted in a book while eating her cereal, she can look up and realize – hey, I gotta get moving.

It’s difficult for kids to understand the difference between 10 minutes and half an hour. It all sounds like the future, it all sounds like not right this instant. After all, no one is yelling yet!

Now I’m not claiming that your household will magically transform if you start using something like this; however, I do believe it’s a useful tool to be aware of. Some kids go with the flow better than others. Mine need lots of cues.

Is there anything you’ve started using that has helped your kids and improved family rhythms? I’d love to know!

Note: We do not receive any compensation for mentioning this product, it’s simply something our family uses and enjoys and we feel like sharing. 

Have You Seen This? Time Timer

Have you seen this? COLOR APPEEL crayons


We’re not huge product pushers around here. If anything, we try to live with the philosophy that it’s better to purchase less and invest more in experiences.

However, from time to time we run into things that are wonderful and worth checking out.

Today’s cool find is COLOR APPEEL crayons.

We originally found these in an indie children’s store called PLAY in the Logan Square neighborhood of Chicago. They were pricy but you could see that they produced bright thick colors on the paper and the clear plastic case looked handy enough for use in the car during road trips.

Here we are nearly two years later and I recently ordered a replacement set. That’s how long they’ve lasted. TWO YEARS.


Hands down, they are one of my favorite art purchases for our kids. First, these crayons are tall and slightly thicker than traditional crayons and colored pencils so they don’t break on a  regular basis. In fact, they’ve never broken. Plus the larger size makes them easier for adults to use when coloring with the kids.

You gradually peel the outer paper down via a string on the side, allowing the coloring stick to stay clean and fresh as you continue to use it. We recently lost a few and when I went to re-order I learned there’s also a metallic set. I snapped up both sets.

Looking for a gift or gift recommendation for grandparents and relatives? This might be a good one. They can be purchased on Amazon here, as well as Barnes and Noble and Paper Source. Happy coloring!

Have you seen this? COLOR APPEEL crayons