Monday, September 17, 2012

A new app to make parents' lives easier, happier, better!

When Max and Sabrina were little-little, daydreaming at work was often of the "What are the kids doing now?" variety and the "I wonder how Max's therapy is going" variety (and sometimes the "I sure could use a vacation" variety). Now that they're older, and in school for most of the day, I wonder less. The kids have also gotten in the habit of calling me at the office with important updates like "Mommy! We need to order more lanyard!" (Sabrina) and "Ohmmmy! Ishney ooze!" (Max—translation: "When are we going on a Disney Cruise?").

Our sitter calls less frequently these days and I've wished there were an easier way to stay connected; she is my kiddie lifeline when I'm at the office. So when I was asked to check out Karoo, a new free app from that helps you connect with your babysitter and family, I was all bring it on.

The app is simple to navigate. You can share updates about the kids, plus photos or videos, on a timeline, then invite your sitter—along with family and friends—to do the same.

Your sitter can then literally keep you posted on what the kids are up to. She can also keep track of meals and meds, even diaper changes and naps. (Unfortunately, the app cannot convince older kids to take naps—I miss those days)!

This app could come in particularly handy if you have a kid with special needs who gets therapy while you're at work; the therapist could take pictures of certain exercises, say. Or send a "Hooray!" shot to show that your child is doing something awesome. Obviously, she could simply take photos and zap them to you but I like the idea of having all photos (and memories) in one handy place.

I particularly like the "milestone" icon you can tap to pick from a list of tags; of course, I starred the video of Max walking up the stairs by himself for the first time. If you have a kid with special needs you know that "milestones" are often more like "inchstones," and there are plenty of those—you can click "art" or "tummy time" or "kicks a ball" or "eating with a spoon" and, man, I cannot WAIT to click "potty time." If you're a working mom, you know you fear missing those "WOW!" moments, and so at least the sitter can capture them and share with you so you can squeal in your office.

If you're a working mom, how do you stay connected with the kids during the day?

This post and accompanying social media shares are part of a compensated program through Women Online/The Mission List. All opinions are my own!


  1. Hi Ellen! I've been looking for an easy way for Reid's team to communicate throughout the day. I'd love to use that care log on karoo but I can't find it on the app. Can you tell me how you got to it? Thanks!
    ilyssa (lys76 at msn dot com)

  2. Yes! Just click on the icon on the homepage, next to the star, that looks like a little note.

  3. Thanks...that's not on mine. I just have the camera, the location finder, and the milestone star. I'll try to e-mail them I guess unless you have any other hints. Shana Tova!

  4. That's so funny...I just looked at your screen caps and you definitely have a little note and I don't. Wonder if it's a phone thing. I have the iphone 4s. Maybe you're using something different?

  5. I love the text and photo invention. My Mary is nonverbal, but her home health aids and I text several times during the day. They send me funny pictures of her in the park or at the local Farmers' Market which brings a lot of joy to my day. I send them a lot of "how are u 2 doing today" messages and "oh, I forgot to tell you". I like the text because I don't always want to have a whole conversation, just checking in and giving instructions.

  6. Ilyssa, even though the app is new it seems there is already an update! So go to the app store, install the update and you should see the log. And Happy New Year!

    Anon, that's great you keep in touch like that. My sitter doesn't "do" text!


Thanks for sharing!

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