Hello! I’m Molly, a mom of two boys (ages 8 and 11), a wife, an owner of two business, and I love to read and play board games. I worked at Microsoft through my 20s, and I left when my first son was born so that I could spend more time with him. I love being a mom and watching my kids learn about everything. But my love for software development has stayed with me too, and I’ve enjoyed using some of what I learned at Microsoft to help with my new job of raising my kids – that’s why I started working on The Trip Clip®.
How I Use The Trip Clip®
I originally came up with the idea for The Trip Clip® when I was doing the grocery shopping with my older son when he was 4. He was tough to manage in the grocery store, but I figured out that if he could ‘help’ me shop, he wouldn’t spend so much time creating his own fun/chaos. He could recognize pictures of things we needed and cross them off the list, and he loved to feel like he was part of the process. By age 7 when this video was taken, he was truly helpful in the grocery store. He knew our brands and where things were, and could get a number of things by himself while I helped his younger brother who was starting with a picture list all his own.
I have carried over my philosophy of including my kids in the household chores and family activities to other uses for The Trip Clip® as well. Every week when we need to return our books to the library, I make a Trip Clip® custom list of the books we need to find so that it’s my son’s job (not mine) to locate his library books. When we go on trips, I make a picture packing list for each of my kids (with the pictures even my younger son can pack his own things) and the work doesn’t all fall on me. Counting out pairs of socks is good math practice, too.
Many of the Activities I’ve created (like the Bingo games) continue this theme of engaging the kids in what’s happening around them, rather than helping them to tune out by handing them a screen. My younger son has enjoyed having Bingo Boards and Count On It games to use on the sidelines of his big brother’s soccer games, and we can count goals together, or look for funny things like screaming babies or angry people. At restaurants, we’ve found that the Bingo boards, as well as Dots and Boxes and Hangman, really help the time go by quickly when we’re waiting for a table, or waiting for our food to come. And we use it every time we travel in the car or on an airplane. My kids espeically love playing Travel Bingo in the airport while we’re waiting for our flight.
Now that my kids are older, we’ve found that the Chores and Checklists activity is the one we use the most often. My kids each have their own morning and after school checklists that work wonders for us.
As I’ve worked over the past few years on turning my idea into a product that I could offer to other parents, The Trip Clip® has given me a new opportunity to engage my kids in grownup activities. They have been fellow brainstormers, test subjects, assembly line workers, models, actors, and along with their dad, they are some of my biggest supporters as I figure out how to get a home business started on a part-time work schedule, while raising two young, energetic kids. Although it feels like there is never enough time for everything in my life, I’m glad my kids have been with me through this whole process. We’ve all had a lot of fun creating The Trip Clip®, and we hope your family enjoys using it as much as ours does!