Update September 2012

All the gear infants, tots, children and parents need.

Tasheena Carpenter

Family Preferences

The Organized Family Menu Planner (Glow Baby) is a new must have for the kitchen. It includes a detachable shopping list, 52 weeks of meal planning worksheets, recipes, and food preference and measurement conversion charts. Plan for special occasions with menu organization, event information, guest lists and RSVP notes. The title is available at www.glowbaby.ca.

Flavor Changer

Momma Chia adds three new varieties to its line of chia-based vitality beverages: Grapefruit Ginger, Guava Mamma and Kiwi Lime. The vitality drinks contain omega-3, fiber, protein and antioxidants. Its nutrient-rich blend of organic chia seeds and fruit juices pleases all palettes. Available at Whole Foods Market and grocery stores.

Quality for Less

Is secondhand shopping becoming the new trend? SPOILED! is a website for the resale of premium clothing. Peruse European brands and other high-end attire for kids ages 0-14. Shop for your little boy or girl at http://spoiledfashionz.com.

Task Manager

Adhering to budgets and hectic schedules while focusing on individual emotional and physical needs is a full-time job. Check out HatchedIt for assistance in organizing daily tasks and information. It features a real-time calendar that is available for mobile devices, an address book, up-to-date news feeds and e-mail. Sign up for the online management platform at www.hatchedit.com.

Colorful Infusion

Crayola is animating life just in time for school. With the companyís latest products, kids explore surfaces other than the usual blank paper. Fabric markers in eight unique colors allow little ones to express their style and customize projects as they see fit. Older kids and young adults have fun taking notes using the 2012 Crayola Wild Notes Collection. The unique pen-and-paper system changes handwriting into fun patterns. Browse www.crayola.com for a full selection of creativity.

Get Plugged In

Tablets are all the rage nowadays. But with their high price tags, itís hard to let youngsters enjoy applications and games. With that in mind, the VINCI Tablet II offers such technology for children younger than age 5. Young users enjoy three levels of learning, including The Curious, The Confident and The Capable, all at an affordable price point. Order at www.vincigenius.com.

Safeguard Strollers

The makers of Snooze Shade offer a new dual-purpose blind for strollers and car seats that blocks out 94 percent of sunlight and protects against wind, rain and bad weather. The Snooze Shade Plus is deeper and wider than the original, fitting infants to toddlers. Both attach to most strollers and car seats using Velcro snaps. Find out more at www.snoozeshadeusa.com.

Academic Achievement

Giving every student a voice at school is KleenSlate, an interactive aid that helps kids communicate during class. The paddles boast double-sided dry-erase boards, allowing students to write and display answers. Learn more at www.kleenslate.com.

Mini Fashions

Disney publishing created a new application, which allows kids to become Minnie Mouseís personal fashion assistant. Young fashionistas customize the perfect bow for the famed character by changing colors, patterns and textures. When users are done, they can showcase creations in the 3D Bow Show. Log onto www.itunes.apple.com/us/app/minnie-bow-maker to download the app, which comes with three new stories and familiar Disney characters.

Daily Learning

The Pocket Literacy Coach, a mobile SMS-based platform, empowers on-the-go parents to create and increase learning opportunities for kids up to age 12. A daily text message lesson is sent to cell phones with a short, fun and creative learning activity that aims to foster literacy skills. To learn more, log onto www.pocketliteracy.com.

This column appeared in the September 2012 issue.