Love To Travel? You Will Love These Bags

If you love to travel as much as we do, then you will love these bags. Good for overnights and weekends at Grandma’s, they are just as useful for long trips.

have sippy will travel

The National Geographic luggage line by Eagle Creek is extremely durable, with weatherproof tarpaulin outer that makes the pack easy to wipe clean both inside and out. What’s not to love about that? Especially if you have kids- but anything you are dragging around is bound to get dirty, all the better if it’s easy to clean up. Since it’s easy to clean, it makes sense that the zippers are water resistant (and self repairing!). These lockable zippers have protection from thieves, wind, water, and more. It has a laptop compartment that can also be locked, as well as zippered mesh pockets and key fob. You can separate your dirty or wet items from clean items and main compartment with the front zipper compartment, and there is even a hidden space for your passport, wallet, phone- whatever items you want to keep close and safe.  Designed to be secure, it has compression straps, internal gear attachment, D rings, and it comes with an emergency whistle and spots that reflect light to help keep you visible.  Several types of bags available, prices vary, see for options.

The Wayfinder Waist Packs from Eagle Creek has been crazy useful, I’ve used it pretty much nonstop. It comes in two sizes, small and medium, and it’s great for going hands free. And shoulder free- I get so tired of dragging stuff around on my back sometimes, and it’s often inconvenient. Biking, climbing, kayaking, whatever. If you only have a few things to take with you, the Wayfinder is perfect. High capacity, quite a few compartments and zippers for organization, water resistant, and just all around easy. The water resistant coating? It’s made from recycling the PVB coating in windshields. Really. It also makes them stain resistant, which any parent or traveler will love. $30-$40 at

wet bags

Packing Cubes, Folders and Sacs are great for keeping organized and efficient. I have no way of expressing how much I appreciate these, or how often I use them- which is always. Always. When I’m going somewhere, which is often, I always, always use these. They make traveling so much easier. The Pack-It Active™ lets you organize all your gear, you can get more of your stuff into less space, as well as keep it clean. It features antimicrobial treatment to keep the stink out, and out of the rest of your luggage if you use it to keep your dirty stuff inside. Plus, you can wash it. The Pack-It Original holds its shape very well, regardless of what you have inside it. Once opened, everything is accessible and easily found and organized inside the hotel drawer or your suitcase. Packables are super, super useful- they are small and easily packed into your luggage, luggage. Yes, I know. Why pack luggage into your luggage? Because sometimes you run out of space. It’s harder to pack laundry, or maybe you just bought too much stuff on your trip. Don’t want to buy a new suitcase, or pay for a checked bag? Enter Packables. They come in DaypackDuffel and Tote/Pack and are useful to keep on hand whenever you travel. No reason to be caught wanting! Prices and colors vary, all under $40 at

gym bags

Go Dash Dot is a great “go to” bag for women on the go. With several bags (and lots of color options) and sizes to choose from, it’s a fantastic gym bag, weekender, or work to weeknight bag. It can even function as a diaper bag if you so choose. Sturdy, though heavy, it comes in tote, backpack, crossbody, and more. Some have spaces for your yoga mat, sneakers (for an easy change), carabiners, and more. There is a lot of space inside, and multiple compartments to separate your items. Keep work separate from play, night life, or whatever suits you. Prices vary, go to to see what strikes your fancy.

Products For Your Home You Will Love

With winter on the way, and fall finally here (thank goodness for the end of that scorching summer heat!), we are going to be spending more time indoors. Keeping that in mind, here are some interesting and useful new items that you can use year round.

Calamityware serving-ware brings whimsy and art to the dinner table. These fantastical porcelain-plates will also serve as conversation starters, with hidden pictures created by Calamityware and artist Don Moyer. These clever takes on flatware are both pretty and unique, while using a traditional blue and white color scheme. Unexpectedly decorated plates, mugs, and more are covered with depictions of sea monster creatures, giant robots, frogs, and more creatures from sci-fi.  Dishwasher and microwave safe, they are as functional as they are interesting. While they aren’t cheap- $42 for each plate, for example, they make your table a more fun place to dine. Check out all the options at

dinner plates

Save money and single-use-plastic waste by filling and refilling water glasses and  bottles at home. Safe Home Drinking Water Test Kits help provide peace of mind, letting you know what’s in your water. Learn about your tap water with these helpful and easy to use home test kits. Test your water, and make sure that your family’s health is protected.  There is a lot of nonsense in most town’s water nowadays, find out if there is trouble with yours. 80% of the body is water, and you use it for everything- cooking, bathing, drinking, washing, and more. It’s vital to have safe water.  According to the brand, “Safe Home® and Safe Home® Pro EnviroTestKits from Environmental Laboratories, Inc. (ELI), one of North America’s largest EPA Certified Laboratories for testing drinking water, provides several testing options in three easy steps.  Upon receiving the results, you’re empowered to make appropriate decisions – for instance, installing a water treatment or filtration system or disinfecting your well system, among other solutions.”  They are easy to use, the directions take only about a minute to complete and are all but foolproof. There are options for test at home as well as sending a sample out for more detailed information. For more information, visit

at home testing kits

For your pets, check out HandsOn Gloves (in several colors and sizes, including for children). Get rid of all the excess hair and shedding, which will help your home as well as your allergies. Some dogs (and many cats) hate being brushed, but with the use of these gloves, it just feels like some petting and attention. You can use them in the water at bathtime, or dry. Get your kids to help out, and take care of the pets like they promised to- it’s not work and it’s very easy. It’s also effective, which many products can’t claim honestly.  They take off huge amounts of unwanted and excess fur with no pain or struggling- we were amazed by the huge clumps of fur made by our youngest dog, especially. Good for all hair types, although with very long haired pets you might want to supervise the kiddos so they don’t create knots (as with any brushing). Made with hypo-allergenic, bio-friendly components that are proven to be safe for use with humans and animals, it does it’s job by keeping everyone healthy. For more information, prices, and to choose yours, please visit

easy to use pet brush

Cute New Interactive Toys and Take Alongs

With summer coming to a close, you might be trying to get a few more road trips in, and as much outdoor time as possible. These fun items are sure to please even the pickiest members of the family.

cat toys

Pomsies are too cute, your kids will love them. While they might be aimed at girls, we all know that gender marketing is ridicules and that kids pick what they like- my son and his friends liked playing with Pomsies, as well as my daughter.  These wearable and interactive pets could be the next Fingerlings, who knows. They are really sweet- they are like a wearable Furby. Available since July in all major retailers for about $15, they have a long fuzzy tail that can be wrapped around your wrist, suitcase, backpack or whatever your child feels works for them. Pomsies have eyes that light up and change color to express their mood, such as being hungry, silly, happy, or giving 50 reactions when you play with them. They purr when you interact with them (which you can feel), and love it when you brush them with their included brush. These are super cute, and not too pricey. I’m thinking you and your kids will like these quite a bit- we do.

For the exact opposite of Pomsies, check out Grumblies. Much like your cranky 2 year old, there is no pleasing a Grumblies. I think these are plural no matter how you are speaking about them…LOL. Grumblies are short-tempered trouble makers who don’t want to hear a word about it. Grumblies have more then 40 reactions when you play with them, but unlike Furbies or Pomsies, you can’t cuddle or nurture Grumblies. The more you play with them, the angrier they get. Each Grumblies have it’s own personality and sounds that it makes. $20 at major retailers.

kids toys

 Waggables are not only adorable, but fun to make and quite unique. You and your child can design a pet that looks just like yours, from nose to tail. Visit the Waggables website for thel customizer where you are able to design your character to fit your pet’s look, then it is turned into a plush ball of adorable you can snuggle up with.  It takes about 4 weeks to arrive from the day you make it on the website, and in the meantime, you will receive email updates telling you about your pet’s progress. Perfection takes time, after all. The notifications are really cute, the kids will enjoy them. In no time, your custom plush will arrive at your door. $40 at

Can’t get enough of the World Cup? Perfect for soccer fans of any age or ability, Soccerborg is a innovative game that lets you play against your opponent, even when the weather is bad and you are stuck indoors. Your favorite soccer players are replaced by robots which go head-to-head in a game of skill. Work your robot’s corresponding remote control to make the robots dribble, shoot, pass the ball, and more. Soccerborg combines the fun of playing of soccer with RC technology, your FIFA fan will love it. (So do my soccer lovers, one big and one small- they enjoy playing each other. It’s a little more evenly matched then on the real soccer field.) Requires 10 AAA batteries.  $60 at major retailers, on Amazon, or at

What child doesn’t love horses? Spirit, a courageous horse, and his owner Lucky have had a lot of changes. When they make their big move to the countryside, Lucky lives with her Dad, her Aunt Cora, and her horse, Spirit, in their new home in Miradero. If your child is a fan of the new animated series by Dreamworks or of horses in general, the playsets by Playmobil are sure to be a huge kit- even my teen daughter is taken with them, even though she pretends she isn’t.  Lucky’s Happy Home, set 9475, is a true-to-the-show replica, complete with an equipped kitchen and secret hideout. The set is really lovely, and comes with Lucky, Aunt Cora, Spirit, a goose, and everything you need for a kitchen. Aunt Cora is famous for her meals, and is intent on teaching Lucky how to be a “proper lady”, so the kitchen is kind of a big deal here. Don’t worry, Lucky is quite the little lady, and we all know that well behaved women rarely make history, after all. $100 at

Astronaut Training Experience® (ATX) at Kennedy Space Center

Your Child’s Dream of Space Travel is HERE!

We have all imagined what it might be like to go into space, to land on Mars, to be an astronaut. Now at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in Florida you and your family can live it.

Learning about science and space is important, but experiencing the trials and actively participating in simulations of life on another planet gives education a whole new perspective. There are two parts to the new program, the Astronaut Training Experience (ATX) and Mars Base 1. These are both are pretty much all day events, though there are shorter options available should you prefer. Keep that in mind because you will want to give yourself plenty of time for each, and time to explore the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex.

space center

Astronaut Training Experience® (ATX)

The virtual reality Walk-on-Mars, Land-and-Drive-on-Mars full-motion simulator, Launch Mission and Spacewalk Training are all part of the ATX. This experience is hands on and high tech. If you or your children already love science and have a fascination with space, this will bring that passion to life. Prepare for your mission to Mars by training like a real NASA astronaut headed to space. Once you have been through ATX, Kennedy Space Center has taken it one step further with Mars Base 1. Ever wanted to take a space walk? How about a zero-gravity experience, where you fix space equipment like a real astronaut would? You and your team are strapped into special seats just like the real thing and you are handed tools to maintain the equipment you need to function day to day in space, using NASA techniques to solve problems. Navigate Mars terrain to deliver needed goods in your own space rover- be careful, it can get very bumpy. Don’t worry, you receive training so your skills are up to par before you are sent on these harrowing missions.

You can do any of these as “mini missions” if you don’t have time to do them all at once in a 5 hour spurt. Each stage takes about 30-45 minutes.

Keep in mind that this program takes about 5 hours and does not include admission to the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex

Mars Training Camp

Mars Base 1

What could be cooler than a day actually spent on Mars? Not and hour or a walk through display, but a real day working and surviving on the planets surface doing real science? If like me your answer is that nothing could be cooler than this, then there is no other place to be. Become a “rookie astronaut” participating in simulations and scientific research to grow and analyze crops in the Mars Botany Lab, or use robots to accomplish tasks. Yes, you actually take part in these activities, and grow real food that is really used and consumed.

Again, keep in mind that this program takes about 5 hours and does not include admission to the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex

There is so much to do and learn that goes beyond what we imagine. Having the real life science and innovation at your finger tips melds what we learn in books with what we actually put our hands on. Both the Astronaut Training Experience® (ATX) and Mars Base 1 offer the magic of space travel without leaving the ground. Plan your visit, first stop Florida, final destination the Red Planet, Mars.

astronaut camp

You will really want to save some time to visit Kennedy Space Center as well, it’s quite an experience on it’s own. At least a full day, more if you want to see and take part in everything the attraction has to offer. There are endless museums, theaters, an IMAX, shows, hands on demonstrations, items belonging to astronauts, satellites and ships that have been in space, and of course, there are opportunities to meet astronauts themselves. And of course, there is an app for that. Should you want, the Kennedy Space Center Official Guide App is available for free in both the App Store and Google Play. Fun.

See all the Details on the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex’s website – or on Social Media – Twitter FacebookInstagram

Summer Fun In New York With the Family

There is a lot to do in New York with the kids this summer, no matter what your interests are. From waterparks to Broadway shows, indoor or outdoor activities, you and your crew will find much to do in the Empire State.

When it’s hot, but you still want want to be outdoors, why not consider a water park? Splish Splash Waterpark is a great place to spend the day as a family in the heat of the summer. Waterparks should be high on the summer “to do” list, and this is one of the best spots in the area.  There are lots of options for kids of all ages, with smaller splash or wade pools for smaller kids (scaled down pools and slides, little swings, spray parks, etc) in several varieties so that everyone can have fun and enjoy themselves. The bigger the kid, the more places they can play- but of they are too big, they can’t play in the small kid areas, so that the little ones don’t have to worry about being trampled.  Some favorites were Mutiny Bay, which puts your family in brightly colored boats, letting riders use water-spray “cannons” to blast other boats while those outside the ride can blast those inside the boats- and get sprayed themselves. Abyss Tube Slides were a favorite with all the kids, twisting and and turning your way down the enclosed slides. So was Bootleggers run, which holds up to four at a time in a tandem raft.  “Climb aboard a four-man raft that actually goes uphill with new generation hydromagnetic technology. It flies like a roller coaster without rails. So much fun, it just may be illegal!”says the park.  It really did seem as much like a roller coaster as it did like a tube ride, it was very cool. There are also favorites like wave pools and “lazy rivers”, and so much more.  Head over to and get your tickets soon, summer will be over before you know it.

luna park


Coney Island, a “must” for locals and tourists alike, is a great place to beat the summer heat, or at least lean into it somewhat gracefully. A go to spot for generations, each season changing slightly, adding more rides, keeping new and fresh while still appealing to the nostalgia of days past. Just steps from the boardwalk, there is a beach with a clean shore and big open ocean.  For the animal lovers, there is the New York Aquarium just a little ways down, which also has a wonderful seal show that should not be missed.  For the adventurous types, there are big thrill rides at Luna Park which include 7 roller coasters like the classic wooden Coney Island Cyclone.  For the littler park goers, there are tons of attractions and rides at Luna Park like the Happy Swing and Magic Bikes. This year, Luna Park has also opened new rides Cozmo Jet and Coney Clipper, so even if you have been before, there is a great excuse to go again.

coney island

The Cozmo Jet is a family friendly ride which uses virtual-reality, video, and an interactive gaming console. It looks like your child’s game system, but with a VR mask that you wear as you are on the ride. It was an odd sensation, moving with the “virtual” reality while trying to blast and keep count. You and your family (one or two per “Jet”) blast aliens, with the high score winning.
The Coney Clipper is a more classic “pirate ship” themed ride that rocks back and forth, lifting you off your feet a bit as you reach the top of the swing. Don’t worry, you are all buckled in.
Visit or the park itself to get tickets.

Saw Avenue Q, a witty, silly, yet poignant musical on Broadway , tickets via TripAdvisor

For a variety of fun, you can go to TripAdvisor for booking ease. It is the world’s largest provider of tours, activities and attractions, with more than *56,000 bookable experiences in 2,500 destinations worldwide (according to the company). TripAdvisor Attractions has options for every kind of traveler,from walking tours, skip-the-line access, hotels, and more. You can find the best prices and values from more then 200 sites, which are updated in real time so you never miss a good bargain. Gift certificates only work for certain attractions, so be aware of that- most options will only work when you book directly from the site and using a credit card. However, if you are looking for a good deal, this is a site you should visit. Choose a restaurant, get a massage, go to a museum, and much more. Visit for more info and to choose your experience. 

Anastasia on Broadway, photo by Matthew Murphey

Looking for the iconic NYC “Broadway” experience, but don’t want to break the bank? Visit

 Broadway Inbound and The Broadway Collection to choose a show you and your family want to see, at a price you can afford to pay. These aren’t second rate shows, you can see performances of Wicked, The Book Of Mormon, Anastasia, more. No matter if you are taking a couples night out, taking the kids to see a show, or arranging a large group (the WHOLE family? A club, team, or committee that wants to go together, etc) you will be able to get discounted tickets to shows that you actually want to see. To us, bringing the kids to see live theater is very important, it gives them experiences that can’t be replicated elsewhere, as well as an appreciation for art and music. So what are you waiting for? It’s Broadway, baby- grab the family and head out.

Too Hot To Work Out? Work In. Inside, Anyway.

When it’s just too hot to work out outside, you can take your workouts inside. Don’t have a gym membership, or just REALLY not in the mood to go out? Just keep some DVDs in the house so you can stay on track. Here are some new ones we tried out.

Bottom Line & A Core Defined with Patricia Friberg (a professional trainer) is a Pilates and Strength based workout broken into three segments; Bottom Activation 1, 2, and A Core Defined. These and a few guides, set ups, and an intro make up the DVD. It focuses on defining your butt (as the name indicates) but also works your core, improves posture, and helps you become more flexible and fit. While it definitely focus on the glutes, you will feel this workout in your abs and legs as well for sure.  You will likely want to do the first activation a few times before you move on to the second, just to get the hang of it or to get your body ready for the higher intensity. A Core Defined covers more of the body overall, but really focuses on the abs. Friberg gives good direction throughout, just keep pace that is comfortable to you and move on when you are ready. Available for $20 from

Want to work your lower body? Want to work out, but in a bit of a time crunch? Your Sexy Everything (Booty, Legs, Thighs) by Ilyse Baker might be one to try out. I know it says “everything”, but it means everything below the Mason Dixon, it seems. It has a good variety of workouts, containing four mini workouts that are 5, 6 ,7, and 8 minutes long each as well as two bonus workouts- Ballet Grooves, a 5 minute core workout (and it’s fun) as well as the Dancer’s Floor Stretch (seeing a theme here?) that is 10 minutes of lengthening, flexibility enhancing stretching and toning. $15 at

Also available by Ilyse Baker are Dancinerate Sassy Jazz and Hip Hop Fusion and Dancinerate Burn with the Beat. These fun workouts are great ways to add some variety to your routine, and maybe learn some new moves. If you are a great dancer- great! These will just add to your skills and be good practice for you. Not a good dancer? (Cough) That’s ok- they are still really fun to do, and no one sees you being completely off when you are in your own living room- enjoy it.

Want to add a little something extra to your workout? The AB-EZE suspension trainer is fun, interesting, and easy to install and use. It’s an interesting way to work your abs and core, it’s design based on a trapeze harness found on a catamaran. It uses your body and weight as well as gravity to give you a work out, by leaning on the support pad and using it to engage your muscles. AB-EZE anchors easily over any door or fixed point, then by leaning on the comfortable support pad, muscles will instantly engage. You can change the intensity by pressing a button and lengthening or shortening the strap, and changing your body positions. Use it to “firm and lift the butt; sculpt abs and shrink waistline; strengthen back; and, shape and define legs”.  Easy to take with you when you travel if you’d like as well. Get yours for $149.99 at 

In Light of Change by Julie Rammal is a change of pace. It’s a little slower, and uses your whole body to work out your whole body. This is one of the more interesting DVDs I’ve tried in a while. It is for sure not like other DVDs you might have tried. It has eight different (VERY different) segments ranging from Cardio Boxing to “Tibetan Rituals”, none of which take more then 8 minutes to complete each. No equipment is needed to do any of them, and is said to be inspired by “aerobics, primal movements, yoga, Pilates, stretching and nature.” Overall, I found it calming and relaxing, while still providing a decent workout. I enjoyed this one, it was quite different, but in a good way. One note- it’s not great for beginners. Ms. Rammal is not great with instruction or giving modifications, so only do what you feel comfortable with, or what you’ve been taught to do as modifications outside. Available for about $19 from




Fun Toys That Let You and Your Children be Creative

It can be hard to find something to do as a family, or something that will entertain the kids that doesn’t need to be charged. Getting kids away from screens can be challenging, but with toys like these, you won’t have to try too hard.

Have a little car lover? (Or maybe a big one, as well- Father’s Day is just around the corner) You can select from a handful of new mini-vehicles from Automoblox®, an award-winning line of high-quality collectible wooden car toy vehicles. Included the pick-up truck Grizzly, the X10 Timber Pack SUV with a trailer, and the very first Automoblox motorcycle. These cars have a body made of European beech wood, and can be manipulated multiple ways to create different designs.  Both kids (recommended for ages 4 and up) and adults love playing with the mix and max, fun to put together cars that don’t require tools to create. New minis are priced at $11.99 – $23.99. The larger  BR100 Hercules 16.5″ hauler (that can also be recreated into a dump truck) is $59.99.  It is not only larger, but also comes with two back ends, a ramp, two mini vehicles, and has room to hold five mini vehicles. Get yours on Amazon.

puzzles autism

If you are a fan of puzzles, TCG has an excellent line that you will want to get your hands on. They have s many options of different photos, scenes, and piece counts, there is something for everyone (and every family ability). These are really beautiful, well crafted puzzles you will be tempted to frame (and in fact, we are framing one of ours). In addition, TCG has a campaign that benefits both Autism Speaks and Autism Speaks Canada since 2016. As puzzles help calm and stimulate some children and adults with Autism, it is a wonderful fit and a great cause to support. Every box has Autism Speaks puzzle piece logo on it. “TCG’s Autism Speaks assortment includes puzzles designed for a wide range of puzzlers, from the whimsical and gorgeous renderings of fantasy artist Miharu to original TCG designs, and more.” (as per TCG) Prices range from $3.99 for a 200 piece puzzle to $7.99 for a 1,000 piece puzzle.

DIY kids

Have a creative teen or tween? Consider Juicy Couture Fruit Obsessions Bracelets and Juicy Couture Hair Candy Accessories- Juicy Couture is all the rage with the younger girls right now, and these definitely hit their mark in this house, let me tell you. My daughter was thrilled, couldn’t wait to get her hands on these kits, and was excited about the results. She wears them often, and I’m sure you will have similar results with your young fashionista. What is more fun then making your own accessories? Not much at that age. And these are definitely NOT the cheesy, kiddie kits from our childhood- these make high quality, really nice looking items. They look store bought, more like what you see adults creating on Etsy. If your child is a fan, you will want to check these out. Prices vary, but I’m seeing these for about $15.

Your child might also enjoy making his or her own blanket or hoodie blanket- these are both adorable. There is the “Make It Real” Unicorn Blanket Hoodie, which comes with everything needed to make a super cute blanket (although I think it looks more like a cape) complete with unicorn hood. This fleece knotted blanket will help your child develop and learn skills useful both for making the item and for the future, which I love. Learning toys are the best. Know how to sew? That much easier. Learning how? No problem at all, making the Unicorn Blanket Hoodie will help teach you.  $24.99 on Amazon and Jo-Ann Fabrics.

wear shark fin

Prefer something with a little more bite? ALEX makes the new DIY Knot A Shark for kids who’d like to try their fin at something new. The ALEX DIY Knot-A-Shark comes with everything you need to make your own snuggly, scary blanket. Not JUST a blanket, but also a tail- your child can get inside it once finished and swim off to bedtime or to cuddle on the couch for shark week. $30.99 on

Keeping Hands of All Ages Busy With These Fidget Toys

tactile toys

No matter what time of year, little hands (and maybe not so little hands) get into everything, especially when you just need a few seconds of stillness. No matter if you are in a restaurant, long car ride, or even just walking through a supermarket, it can be better to put something into the hands that want to touch everything and keep them occupied before they get into simply everything (or maybe just on your nerves).

Got a really little one? Manhattan Toy has several great options, one of which is the Click Clack Ball. This is a brightly colored, plastic ball with many handles to twist and turn. It’s also easy to connect to a baby stroller or seat so your kiddo can’t toss it onto any dirty floors (like they so love to do). It makes sounds when they turn the handles, and rattles as it moves. It is filled with tiny beads, so it makes lots of stimulating noise (but not so much that it will drive mom and dad crazy).  The Click Clack Ball is also a hit with dad over here- he can’t seem to put it down, either. It is listed from $9.99 to $15.99 depending on where you buy, so get your Google on before you shop! Love this toy- perfect for baby showers, too.

baby beads

Another great manipulative from Manhattan Toy is the wooden Classic Baby Beads. There is a reason these have such staying power. Your baby (and toddler, and beyond- really, dad plays with them all the time, and they calm his nerves. I bought him his own set) will enjoy twisting ad turning and rolling these wooden beads all over. The bright, water colored beads are non toxic, so no worries if your little one chews on them. The beads are able to be manipulated endlessly. They seem to love the clacking sound the beads make against each other as well.  The Classic Baby Beads are listed from $9.99 to $16 in different stores, so look online first to get the best price.

Tangle, makers of twisty fidget toys that help reduce stress and enhance creativity, are also known to be “brain tools”. Educators and physical therapists are using these toys to help people not only reduce stress and relax, but also opens up the imagination as well as helps gain (or regain) dexterity. Tangle now offers new additions to their lineup, which already came in many options to suit all sorts of sensory needs as textured, metallic, hairy, fuzzy, classic, rubber, and more.  One new option is Tangle BrainTools Imagine. It has bright and vibrant new colors, and uses ‘magic in motion,’ it seems to glide as you twist and turn it. It’s slightly larger then other tangles, and has transparent colors or solids. $5.99

The “Think” is our favorite, and larger the the “Imagine”. It is great for kids or adults, and often used in classrooms as well.  This very tactile fidget toy can also be used as a hand rehabilitation tool or for physical or occupational therapy. It is ideal for children or adults with sensory issues or who need help increasing hand and finger strength and mobility. $12.99


Fidgitz by Thinkfun is a great fidget toy that is also a puzzle. Not unlike a Rubix Cube in that you have to manipulate it to solve, but very unlike it in that it’s also soothing. Shifting, turning, rotating the infinite loop of the beads had a calming effect, and it was indeed gratifying to solve, but the fun was in the turning of the beads.  It had a soothing feeling. It is like the other fidget toys because it keeps hands busy and occupied, giving relief to nerves and impulses and helping with sensory overload. It is different in that there is a goal, but you can do it again and again and not be “bored” with it. The fidget portion doesn’t end when you solve, and you can do it differently each time. It’s nice, because it adds a “brain teaser” to the fidget aspect, something new and fun to challenge the mind. $9.99 at

fidget toys

Switcherooz by Tastemakers are really interesting, because they are also collectible for fans of comics, cartoons, and the like. They also change into different characters, which I’ve not seen anything like before. They are 3 inches, and change from one person (IE Batman) to another (like Robin) by flipping the bottom chin on the face backward. Sounds a bit scary when I put it like that, but it’s simple and easy. Kids can keep hands busy as well as create stories, act out their favorite comics or shows, and be creative with these fun fidgets. These are a bit harder to find, but worth it! $4.99 on is the only place I have seen them available.