Father’s Day is right around the corner, so it’s time to start thinking about Father’s Day gifts! If your dad is anything like mine, he doesn’t give any clues about what he wants for any occasion. This has given me lots of time to contemplate ideal gifts for fathers, which is what has led to this list!
1. For a traditional, classic gift, gift him a watch.
Watches are timeless gifts, allowing you to stay on your father’s mind (or rather, wrist) throughout the day. Since many people have started using their phones as watches, your father might not have gotten a watch for himself in a while, which makes now the perfect time for a new watch! You can personalize many watches with a thoughtful engraving.
2. Something handmade
You and I both know that spending money doesn’t equate to love. Spending a ton of money on a Father’s Day gift might make your dad smile as he remembers that you’re financially independent, but it won’t help him feel truly appreciated and loved. Help your dad feel loved this Father’s Day by building him something special. If you’ve been looking for an excuse to try woodworking, this might be the perfect excuse for you! Go out and find some pallets to make your father a coffee table or outdoor couch, if you’re feeling ambitious, or even just build him a coatrack! If woodworking isn’t your thing, you can keep it simple and just couple your present with a handmade card for dad. He’ll appreciate getting to read your words to him on paper, instead of electronically, for once, and it’ll be a special memento that he might want to store away for safekeeping with your childhood arts and crafts!
3. A HearBand!
Whether your dad is the type of father who loves music on his morning jog, listening to podcasts while doing the dishes, or taking business calls at the grocery store, the HearBand is the ideal gift for any dad on Father’s Day! A HearBand will allow your father to turn up his tunes, and turn up amplification to hear the ambient noise around him, keeping him safe and in-tune with his surroundings. HearBands are versatile and they’ll slip right into your dad’s routine, no matter what it’s like! Keep your dad up to speed with emerging technology with HearBands, and we can almost promise that you won’t stop hearing about them once he starts using them!
4. A weekend adventure!
The most special thing you can give to your dad is your time. Show your father you really care on Father’s Day by planning a weekend adventure for the two of you on a weekend that you’re both free. You can either purchase plane tickets to a new destination to explore together, or you can keep it simple by planning a camping trip at a nearby scenic destination (or an overnight hotel stay, if your father isn’t the outdoorsy type).
5. A slideshow with photos from over the years.
Let’s be honest, even when our fathers pretend not to be sentimental, they definitely are. By putting together a slideshow of special memories you and your father have shared over the years, you’ll have the opportunity to show your father how much he means to you, and you’ll get to experience a shared sense of nostalgia as you discuss memories (and maybe even learn more about your childhood and family history in the process)! Father’s Day is about celebrating the journey that brought you from infancy to adulthood and transformed your father from man to father. Taking some time to compile photos from the journey will mean a lot to him, and will bring a whole new dimension of meaning to your Father’s Day!
Flying with an infant on board has its challenges. The experience can be a stressful one for the parent and for the baby. However, flying with an infant is often a necessary experience, whether it’s to visit the grandparents, go on a family adventure, or even to take your baby on a business trip with you. When I was an infant, my mother took me on an overseas trip to visit our family, logging 24 full hours of in-air time, multiple flight changes, and a hot, long customs line. Though the experience of flying with an infant has the potential to be stressful, there are ample ways to mitigate the stress of flying with an infant, and what you pack can make all the difference.
1. Comfortable clothes, for you and for your child
Feeling cozy is crucial for flying with an infant, regardless of whether your flight is long or short. With an infant, even a two hour flight can feel like an eternity! When picking your outfit, choose one that is loose and airy, made out of soft cotton, and has lots of layers. You want to ensure that you don’t feel too hot or too cold and that you’re able to move around fluidly. Ensuring that you feel comfortable will allow you to take the best care of your child.
For your infant, choose clothes that are easy to take off, allowing for easy diaper changes. Pick zippers, magnets, or velcro over hard-to-button buttons. You want clothes that will be easy to remove and change out of, even when the airplane lights go off.
2. HearMuffs, for your infant
Airplanes are loud, and an infants’ ears are sensitive! The sound of the engines roaring during take-off and landing will sound much louder to your infant than it sounds to you, and it will sound much scarier, as well! For an infant, everything about the experience of flying is brand new, and when you stop to think about it, flying can be flat-out terrifying! From the engines, to the overhead announcements, to the loud carts moving through the aisles, and the sounds of mid-air turbulence, it’s all scary and new for your baby!
HearMuffs offer sound protection for your infant. Lucid Audio’s HearMuff’s offer advanced infant and baby ear protection, fit a wide range of head sizes, are made with nontoxic, kid friendly materials, and are engineered for maximum comfort! HearMuffs allow you to protect your child from loud and harmful noises, soothing them during the frightening moments of your flight and protecting their hearing for the longterm.
3. Toys, toys, toys!
We all get impatient during flights, and it’s rare for a single game on our phones or a single book to keep us occupied for an entire flight. Similarly, a variety in toys is key for keeping your infant entertained. Be sure to bring calming toys, like your infant’s favorite stuffed animal or blanket. However, also be sure to bring stimulating toys that will keep your infant engaged. Whether it’s an app your baby loves on the iPad, or a different stimulating toy, be sure to pack enough stimulation to keep your baby engaged when your baby gets board. Flying with an infant is much easier when your infant is having fun!
4. A Hearband, for you
Flying with an infant isn’t just hard on your infant, it can also be a challenging experience for the parent. A Hearband will allow you to hear the coos and cries of your infant using the sound amplification feature, while also listening to your favorite podcast, tunes, or while watching an in-air movie. Just because you’re flying with an infant doesn’t mean that you can’t stay entertained during the flight! A calm parent leads to a calmer baby, so do what you need to do to stay centered, while also remaining attentive to your child.
5. Some extra space
Yes, you read that right. Even though it might be tempting to bring all of your baby supplies with you when flying with an infant, you’ll thank yourself for not over-stuffing your bags. Not only is it more difficult to find what you’re looking for when your bag is over-stuffed, but carrying your baby through the security line is hard enough without also lugging huge, heavy bags with you. Be sure to take just what is necessary for your flight. Remember, you can purchase things like additional diapers and wipes at your final destination.
Flying with an infant can be a challenge, but if you pack the right things, it can be a smooth experience. Happy travels, and try to enjoy this special experience of flying with an infant!
It’s never too early to start planning a vacation, and we have some great Memorial Day Family Vacation Ideas for you! Holidays are opportunities for families to get together and find adventure, whether that adventure is in the backyard or across the country!
Here are three ideas for your Memorial Day family vacation:
1. A Memorial Day Family Vacation to DC
It’s easy to lose sight of why we have days off, but Memorial Day is an important holiday because it’s an opportunity to honor those who have lost their lives while serving in our country. Washington, DC is filled with history and its plethora of free and accessible sites makes it an ideal place for a Memorial Day family vacation. You can add to the adventure by taking a road trip to DC and exploring our country by car before arriving in the nation’s capitol! While in DC, make sure to visit these sites:
- Arlington National Cemetery, located in Arlington County, Virginia, just across the Potomac River from D.C., which is an idyllic military cemetery. You can spend hours walking the grounds in remembrance. Bring some flowers to lay and maybe even take a tour.
- The Vietnam Veterans Memorial on the National Mall, which honors members of the U.S. Armed Forces who fought during the Vietnam War. The architecture of this memorial is different from some of the other memorials, but the reflective black stone makes it impossible not to feel reflective of our country and the lives that have been lost fighting in wars. While you’re on the National Mall, also visit the World War I Memorial and World War II Memorial; they’ll be difficult to miss!
- The Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial is an ideal place for you to speak with your children about what freedom really means and the importance of continuing to fight for the rights of vulnerable groups in our country.
3. A Roadtrip to a National Park
America’s national parks are some of the most beautiful places in our country. A Memorial Day family vacation to a national park is an ideal way to get in touch with nature and see some incredible, awe-inspiring sights. Maybe you have a favorite national park already (mine is Bryce Canyon in Utah, where I have road-tripped with my family many times), or maybe you’re wanting to find a new favorite national park! Either way, pack up your car, put your seatbelts on, and make your way to a national park that will surely inspire you! Find a park here!
3. A Memorial Day Family Staycation
Sometimes it just makes most sense to stay in your city for Memorial Day, but that doesn’t mean it has to be any less of an adventure! You can create your own adventure right in your backyard and you can use Memorial Day as an opportunity to find newness in your own city! If you’re staying in town for Memorial Day, you can go on a “camping trip” in your backyard by setting up tents and doing a cook-out! Or, you can pack up your car with a picnic and go on a mini-road trip to the outskirts of your town, exploring the nearby places that you’ve never been before! In addition, you can spend a day being a tourist in your town, bringing out the camera and visiting your city’s top tourist sites and seeing them with fresh eyes! There are lots of ways to make a Memorial Day family vacation special, even in your own city!
Wherever you’re headed, check out Lucid Audio’s HearMuffs and Kids HearMuffs which are great for any family road trip, long or short, because they offer ample sound protection for your children’s ears. Cars and tourist destinations can both be loud places, especially harsh on little ears. HearMuffs feature active compression fo harmful sounds, the unique ability to let in outside voices at a comfortable level, and the choice to play four soothing sounds.
Called the “new radio,” podcasts’ popularity in recent years is surging. Many contribute the rise to its accessibility, mobility, and the demand for digital media content. Many popular podcasts have replaced tv watching and radio listening to one’s sources for news, politics, entertainment, to name a few.
If you are one of the 44% of the US population already listening to podcasts, you will agree there is a vast universe of available. To date, there are 500,000 (and counting) podcasts in more than 100 languages available. With these numbers growing daily, streamlining your options could become overwhelming. Whether you are a digital audio aficionado or a newcomer there is certainly a podcast that will suit your interests and current mood.
Because podcasts are portable and user-friendly, listening on-the-go with your Lucid Audio Hearbands has become even more convenient. Ahead are 10 popular podcasts (in no particular order) you should be listening to on your Hearbands!
Downloaded more than 175 million times (a world record), Serial sets the bar high for its compelling mix of investigative journalism, first-person narrative, and dramatic storytelling. Season 1, dives into the powerful and deeply compelling story of Hae Min Lee. A Korean-American high school senior in Baltimore County, Maryland, Hae Min, disappeared in January 1999. Adnan Masud Syed, her ex-boyfriend, was convicted and given a life sentence plus 30 years. Without giving any spoilers the Serial podcast popularity has assisted in changing the course of the case. No doubt, will you find yourself mentally invested and keeping afloat on current developments. As hard as it may be, we highly recommend not researching the internet until you have completed the series.
A show about curiosity where sound illuminates ideas, and the boundaries blur between science, philosophy, and human experience. Each episode of Radiolab inspires imagination and curiosity. It attempts to approach broad, difficult topics such as “time” and “morality” in a light-hearted manner. In 2007 National Academies Communication Award “for their imaginative use of radio to make science accessible to broad audiences.”
Neuroscientist and philosopher, Sam Harris, explores some of the most important questions about the human mind, society, and current events. Sam Harris, a best-selling author, discusses thought-provoking conversations with physicists, philosophers, psychologists, filmmakers, former cult members, Navy SEALs, and many fascinating people. Regularly ranked among the top podcast lists worldwide, Waking Up has been selected as one of “iTunes Best.” And won a Webby Award for best podcast in the Science & Education category.
If true crime interests you, then Casefiles will certainly stand out as a top choice. This is the mecca of true crime murder mystery with over 100 cases to date. The series deals with solved or cold criminal cases, often related to well-known murders and serial crimes. Most of the cases relate to Australian cases but regularly feature cases around the world.
Trying to disrupt the concept of news, The New York Time’s is reinventing what and how the news should sound. Hosted by star reporter-turned-podcaster, Michael Barbaro, The Daily takes the biggest stories of our time and condenses them down to twenty-minute vignettes and delivers a new story five days a week. Many describe it as paving the way for a new era of journalism and continues to grow in popularity making it a regular on the top Most-Listened lists. Listeners can sign up to receive text message updates on discussed episodes offering further context.
Season 1 explores the 2005 disappearance of beauty queen and high school teacher Tara Grinstead in small town Ocilla, Georgia. The Tara Grinstead missing investigation was the largest case file in the Georgia Bureau of Investigation’s history, with no arrests in 11 years. The podcast quickly drew attention nationwide. As difficult as it may be, try not to research before listening. Without giving away the jaw-dropping details, you will learn how this little unknown podcast literally became responsible for solving this 12-year cold case.
Yes, you are seeing this correctly. The Serial podcast is on our list again. In Season 2, the producers get away from true-crime and dive into a current and ongoing high stakes news-and-issues story. US Army Sergeant, Bowe Bergdahl, was captured in Afghanistan and held for five years by Taliban forces, was released in a prisoner swap for five Taliban held at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. The release was originally hailed good news in a long, costly, and increasingly unpopular war. Listerners learn this complicated story is much more than a prisoner-of-war tale.
1 phone call. 1 hour. Anonymous. Nothing is off Limits. Every week host, comedian Chris Gethard (Time Out’s “10 best comedians of 2015”,) opens the phone line to one anonymous caller, for one hour, and no matter how the conversation unfolds, he can not hang up first. From shocking confessions and family secrets to philosophical discussions, Beautiful/Anonymous is a no holds barred masterpiece.
What if you had to relearn who you are?, What if your past was an unsolved mystery?, or What if you lost your sense of smell? With over 100 interviews, each episode explores and probes into people’s extraordinary, life-altering events through first-person storytelling. Listeners are taken into the raw interior of many human experiences.
Want to be able to listen to TED Talks on-the-go without having to watch the video? Every weekday, this feed brings you the latest TED talks into audio format. Hear thought-provoking ideas on every subject imaginable. From artificial intelligence to zoology, and everything in between, TED Talks gives the world’s leading thinkers and doers a platform to share and spread ideas. Each talk is in the form of short powerful talks with the agenda of making great ideas accessible and spark conversation.
Confused? OK, hear me out.
In recent years, “meditation” has taken on a much broader meaning than the Sanskrit word, Dhyana, which originated as a yoga exercise meant to influence contemplation and self-knowledge.
It is well-documented meditation improves memory, attention, mood, immune system function, sleep, and creativity. All it takes is a few minutes a day to start reaping the benefits. Yet wrapping our minds around being able to “successfully” meditate still seems out of reach.
Sounds simple, right? Sit still (in your mindful pose), focus on your breath, and reflect. There! You are now meditating!
Well, if it was that easy I am fairly confident the idea of a “hectic day” or even road rage would be taboo.
There is good news!
Today, the idea of mediation has evolved into becoming an informal and transferrable practice. Meaning you don’t technically have to meditate to meditate.
While the origin history of the practice continues to remain highly-respected and sacred, the perception of how to meditate has evolved. The context has broadened to include, but not limited to, anything that creates calmness, positive feelings, contemplation, and of course, mindfulness. Once we can wrap our minds around meditation is a state-of-mind rather than a physical pose then we will start receiving the benefits without having to travel to Tibet or having to sit cross-legged, chanting “ommmm” with incense burning in the background.
If you can recognize the importance of being in the present moment, in the now, then you will find you can manifest meditation into your daily life. In fact, whether you are aware or not, you have probably already begun to practice bits of meditation. Now set your intention to be fully present during a few of these everyday activities and you will soon discover that any act can be a meditation.
Listen to Reflect
Good for your body and soul, music can rejuvenate your mind. Find music that promotes and evokes emotions and inner perspective. Allow yourself to reflect and feel while you take in the music. Don’t forget to breathe… deeply.
Take advantage of this soul feeding exercise and allow yourself to create without judgment. Free drawing and adult coloring, both are an easy means to de-stress and provides a low-stress way to unlock your creative potential.
This easy to pick-up, not so easy to put down activity has become my main form of meditation over the last few years. At times (most of the time) my love for adult coloring is a source of comic relief among my family and friends. Yet, there is a reason 8 of the 20 slots on Amazon’s Best-Seller list are Adult Coloring Books.
Cooking with Love
If you believe we are what we eat, then what better time to bring presence and love into your cooking? Use all your senses; feel, listen, look, smell, taste to bring a quality state of being mindful.
I remember the first time I met my mother-in-law, we were talking about her infamous cooking. And what resonated wasn’t what she cooked for, but the way she focuses and reflects on the loved ones she is cooking for as she chops the food and moves through each step of cooking. This unique practice allows her to be fully present. All the while, love is infused into her dishes, easily making it her secret ingredient. And I can confidently say, with traveling and eating in some wonderfully fancy restaurants over the past 20 years, her cooking is (hands-down) the tastiest of all.
Move to make Peace
Even if you only have time for a quick walk around the office, take this time to notice how your body feels, become aware of the way you are moving. Without judgment, simply observe and make peace with how you feel and notice your movement within your surroundings. Recognize that with each step, you are promoting healthy living.
Shower Your Mind
Away from distraction, this is probably the one place where you can easily observe your habitual patterns of thinking. And it’s the closest thing to a daily spa treatment. Enjoy your thoughts and allow for the sounds and sensations of the water to bring you back to the present moment.
Outside to Connect
Now that spring is here, it is the perfect time of year for hiking, boating, picnics, camping, and much more! Natures’ sounds are enlivening, and nothing is more invigorating quite like its beauty. When we become present in nature, we become alive; we become open to receive nature’s wisdom to teach us how to live. For centuries, meditators have discovered the human potential to awaken in nature; that’s why many monasteries and meditation centers are located in the depths of forests and jungles.
Want to upgrade your outdoor meditation practice?
Shop Lucid Audio’s HearBand. Our AMPED technology enables you, the listener to enjoy high definition audio without losing awareness of your surroundings. Customize your experience in real time using the ‘AND’ controls, which allow you to separately choose the volume of your music and of ambient sounds. Whether you want no outside sound or up to 9x amplification, it’s yours.
“We are used to cleaning the outside house, but the most important house to clean is yourself, your own house, which we never do.” – Marina Abramov
WOOHOO! SPRING IS HERE!!!
As the weather starts to get warm enough to open the windows to let the winds carry the dust out of your house, we often find ourselves itching to organize and declutter our homes. Once our closets and drawers are tidy and the dust has been swept away, it’s time to focus on you. And for those introspective personalities, your mental well-being.
Yes, spring cleaning is not just for your home! You can clean-up mental clutter, renew your mind, and fill your soul by following and maintaining a mindset that puts YOU at the top of your priority list. Right where it should be.
According to the Global Wellness Institute, the global wellness industry is estimated to be close to $4 trillion dollars and growing. And in recent years, the taboo of seeking physical, emotional, and mental healing appears to be a thing of the past. Many are more open to the idea of wellness practices and are not just for people with deep-rooted problems, but for people wanting to work through and move past plaguing issues.
If you are ready to begin your Spring Cleaning You checklist, give these 5 ideas a try to get you started.
1. REFOCUS YOUR LENS
It’s interesting when examining a picture, within a group setting, everyone notices different things. This is because we all see things that stand out, impress, or what we appreciate more. All based on our own lives, experiences, and belief systems. What’s even more interesting is when I (myself) come back to a picture, I will notice things I did not originally see. Given this, I believe we (all) can refocus our lenses.
Refocusing our lenses can be accomplished once we can understand and appreciate we all see (perceive) differently. Even when it comes to comparing you too well, you.
It is vital to allow yourself to not have 100% success at first. Keeping this in mind will make it easier to continue practicing. Refocusing your lens (your brain) is just like training or retraining a muscle. With this, I profoundly believe this is not a simple task. Once you start the practice of refocusing your brain, you will eventually find your mind opening and see more than you thought was there. With refocusing your lens comes many benefits, including, being grateful, able to let go of little things, and avoiding gossip and drama, just to name a few. All are practices I believe to be fundamental in leading a healthy mind and body life.
While forgiving others is a wonderful practice, for this exercise I want you to focus on forgiving yourself. Yes, it’s time to forgive yourself for your past mistakes.
Don’t disown those mistakes, but rather learn from the past, create a “re-do,” if needed. Offer yourself a chance to let go. This will allow you to become clear on your morals and values as they are right now. You will find once you are able to forgive yourself you will be able to turn the page. You will be able to realize and appreciate the past, and most importantly recover from any emotional, physical, and debilitating effects of long-term stress.
3. CULTIVATE RELATIONSHIPS
This includes uncommitting to any friendships or relationships that are leaving you feeling bad about yourself. If you feel unnatural or find yourself gossiping with them, you will continue to create toxicity into your life.
Just as important, recommit to the friendships that leave you happy and fulfilled. Plan a trip or a romantic weekend with your partner to clean up those relationships. And just like dusting off your home, proactively work to dust off the distance with those people that bring good energy into your world!
4. CHASE YOUR DREAMS…LEISURELY
Fueling your passion and life’s dreams can sometimes feel like just that, a dream. More attainable and just as beneficial, is to set aside some time each day to do what makes your soul happy. Getting involved in an activity or in a volunteer organization can beneficial to your health. Use your passions to do some good in the world!
Many of us work so much we forget how great it feels to do something leisurely. Leisure creates relaxation and we all know relaxation is typically on the short list for relieving stress. Do something to make your soul happy! This could be as simple as, painting, writing, gardening, traveling to other cultures, or learning a new language.
Equally important is making sure your career path is meaningful to you. If this is not possible then work to cut out major sources of stress that come with your job. This includes unnecessary spending, clutter, a job you hate, or unhealthy relationships.
Chase the idea of enriching your soul, not riches.
5. LAUGH OFTEN
I left this suggestion last as this is my absolute favorite and most important for your “Spring Cleaning You” checklist. I am so confident in this suggestion, I almost feel if you cannot laugh, you might as well throw out all other suggestions. Devote all your attention to learning to laugh more.
According to a multitude of research studies, laughter decreases stress hormones and increases immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies, thus improving your resistance to disease. Laughter triggers the release of endorphins, the body’s natural feel-good chemicals. Endorphins promote an overall sense of well-being and can even temporarily relieve pain.
If you take life too seriously, you’re going to miss out on a whole lot of good times!
There you have it, a few suggestions to begin your Spring Cleaning You checklist!
When all else fails, just remember this thought to help you reset:
Your mind, body, and spirit are all connected. When one of these factors are off balance, our whole body will feel it on some level. Your emotions can cause physical symptoms and spiritual disharmony can cause emotional systems to break down, and so on.
Take a moment out of your day to assess your state-of-mind, how your body feels, and what your brain is picking up.
After all, your body is the one home that you can not up and leave when things get cluttered and muddy. It’s here for you when you are ready to cultivate a life meant living free and clear of clutter.
Lucid Audio cares about the well-being of its customers and aims to provide audio technology and hearing solutions that allow you to live a happier and healthier life.
To view and shop, our products CLICK HERE.
Spring has sprung!! The wildflowers are blossoming, the bulbs you planted in the fall are ready to spring into color, and the bees are enjoying their roles as the couriers of pollen!
Gardening is already fun, but if you’re looking for ways to make gardening even more enjoyable, here are 5 ways to do so:
1. Garden with a little one
Children appreciate the joy of springtime possibly more than anyone else. Have you ever witnessed the joy of a child running their hands through the dirt as they find the perfect place to bury a seed? Guiding a child through the joy of gardening will give you plenty of reasons to smile, and will remind you of the magic of the garden! Planting seeds and pulling weeds with a child in your life will make gardening even more enjoyable!
2. Garden with Hearbands
Lucid Audio’s Hearband will allow you to really soak in all of the beautiful sounds that accompany gardening. From the flutter of a butterfly’s wings to the buzz of a hummingbird, you won’t miss a single special noise when your Hearband is on – that’s because the Hearband (and it’s AMPED technology) allow you to amplify sound up to 9x their normal volume WHILE allowing you to take calls and listen to music – and you will have the full ability to use both of your hands! You’ll get more done in the garden, and you’ll notice more of the beauty of your garden, with Lucid Audio’s Hearband!
3. Join a gardening club
Most cities have a garden club where members can share information about their gardening techniques, can exchange seeds and bulbs, and can share about what’s blooming in their gardens! These clubs allow the often solitary activity of gardening to take on a social dimension that is community-oriented!
We are stewards of our planet together, so it can be helpful to discuss tips and tactics with other garden-lovers. And of course, sharing photos of the fruits of your labor with people who’ll really appreciate the effort that went into gardening will help make gardening even more enjoyable for you! Click here to find a garden club near you!
4. Take breaks with garden picnics
A garden is a sanctuary that takes hours and hours to cultivate and months of patience to sustain. While it’s easy to get “caught in the weeds” with your garden and to “miss the forest for the trees” (sorry for the terrible puns–I couldn’t help myself), it’s important to set aside time to truly appreciate your garden. One special way to enjoy your garden is by having a picnic near your flowers! Put together a simple picnic with tea sandwiches and lemonade and bask in the beauty of your garden! Springtime doesn’t last forever, so make it special while you can!
5. Invite some neighbors over for a garden tour
Gardening isn’t for everyone, but appreciating local blooms is something that almost everyone loves to do! Your neighbors might appreciate the opportunity to come see what’s growing in your garden. Invite some neighbors over to share your gardening technique with them, perhaps offering them some cuttings to start their own garden! If you have herbs, fruits, or other edibles in your garden, perhaps offer them to your neighbors to show them the sustainability of having a garden.
Gardens are wonderful places to bring people together each and every season, so take advantage of the springtime to start cultivating a love for gardening amongst those near you!
On the heels of the recent blog honoring Autism Awareness Month, my curiosity deepened to bridge connections of all children to children on the spectrum. And it only felt natural to deep dive into finding more sensory soothing tools enjoyed by all children, not just on the spectrum.
If you know a child seeking comfort from noisy and chaotic environments, read our Top 6 Sensory Soothing Tools Loved by All Children
1. Kid HearMuffs
One of the most common and universal effects of stress, regardless of being on the spectrum or not, is noise. Because of this, Lucid Audio’s Kid HearMuffs is our top pick.
Originally developed for the aviation industry to assist pilots to hear radio and intercom messages, sound protection has become universal.
As the technology surrounding sound protection advanced, they became more popular and much more affordable for the everyday user.
Auditory Sensory Disorder (ASD) therapists widely utilize sound protection. Specifically to assist and soothe environmental hypersensitivity. Sound protection offers the ability to concentrate on tasks and participate in activities. This type of protection reduces background noise to a manageable level. Many users wear them in any noisy environment, including city streets, concerts, parties, even crowded restaurants.
Regardless of being on the spectrum or not, many choose Lucid Audio Kid HearMuffs’ for their revolutionary technology, kid-approved features, and quality comfort and protection. Kids HearMuffs are Audiologist-Approved and hold an industry-leading 22 Noise Reduction Rating (NRR). And with their patented GrowBand allows HearMuffs to grow with any child starting at infancy.
2. Fidget Spinner
A small handheld gadget you can spin fast with your fingers. They are advertised as a “stress reliever” and marketed for all levels of ADD, ADHD, anxiety, and autism.
The key to fidget spinners is the idea when your hands or any part of your body is moving (i.e. foot tapping or pen clicking), you are able to focus more on what you are needing to do at that moment. This gadget will give your brain and hands oodles of gratification. Many compare using a fidget spinner to doodling on a piece of paper while on a call or during a “yawn-worthy” meeting.
Occupational Therapists have been using sensory slime or some call it, “theraputty”, for years. This is popularly used while working on fine motor and sensory skills. Therapists will bury small objects in the slime. The child will have to rely on using their fine motor skills to retrieve. At the same time, the strange and unfamiliar texture stimulates sensory processing with no mess (if made correctly!)
Think adorably cute stress balls that even sometimes smell yummy. These soft, squishy, foam-like toys are brightly colored. They come in a variety of animal, food, and adorable shapes. Squishies giving one who squeezes it a massive degree of satisfaction.
The most important quality of a squishy is the outrageously satisfying texture between your fingers and the auditory thrill of the sound of the foam squishing and visually watching it reflate back to its original form.
5. Image Captor
Ok! Yes, I 100% had this “toy” when I was a kid! And no joke, my son recently asked for one after playing with it at his cousin’s house!
Filled with chromed pins this mesmerizing toy encourages tactile awareness with the placement of a hand. Place your hands, fingers, common objects, toys, and more to make interesting 3-D images. And not to mention, it feels so interesting to the touch. ASD Therapists consistently use it as a “no-mess” tactile activity during sensory integration. It is a positive reinforcement tool during sensory deprivation therapy. Regardless of being on the spectrum or not, this versatile item has been a popular gift for kids and teens for years!
6. Kinetic Sand
“Kinetic Sand” is actually a trademark name for toy product super popular for its sand-like substance. It is easily moldable but popular for its “melting” feature when squeezed. Kinetic sand has properties of wet sand but it’s not wet and sticks to itself, yet is not sticky. And is soft, yet not fluffy.
It’s versatility and unique texture is ideal for promoting fine motor skills and sensory processing. Kinetic sand offers a wide variety of benefits making it a popular and a highly sought-after product. And if you dare, like slime, you can find hundreds of Do-It-Yourself and How-To’s online to make your very own modeling sand toy.
April 22nd is Earth Day!
Earth Day is the one day we are reminded we have one earth and the importance of protecting it. Most of us get overwhelmed and ask, “Does my individual actions truly make a difference?”
The answer is, YES!
Want help finding ways to celebrate eco-promoting habits with clean air, water, and land? Check out 5 Simple Ways to Celebrate Earth Day!
1. PLANT TO EAT
Yes, growing your own food can be a huge undertaking. Start out small. Pick up one (just one) packet of seeds and give it a go. Plant a few basil plants or an entire garden. You are on your way!
2. GO OUTSIDE
Earth Day is all about bringing attention to Earth and what better way than getting outside. Our earth is a beautiful and wondrous place to explore. Go for a run, hike, or walk with Lucid Audio’s Hearband™ Sport to soak in all of the wondrous and beautiful earth and nature offers while never compromising the special accompanying sounds or missing calls. Lucid Audio wants to celebrate Earth Day with you as you step outside and enjoy the sights and sounds.
3. KEEP YOUR CAR AT HOME
Leave your car at home if you can bike or carpool. The fewer cars on the road the better off we at keeping our air clean. Plus you may find yourself feeling great from the energy you receive from walking biking, or may make a new friend by carpooling.
4. PLANT A TREE
Just like picking up a packet of seeds, planting a tree is not as overwhelming as one may think. Trees are a big part of our earth, they provide oxygen and clean air. Planting one will add to the health and wellness of our world.
5. REDUCE, REUSE, RECYCLE
Earth Day is the perfect day to educate and/or reacquaint yourself with simple steps for reusing and recycling. Timetorecycle.com is a great resource for frequently asked questions pertaining to recycling. Recycling protocols differ throughout the country. Check your city’s water and waste webpage to find out which plastics are accepted for recycling in your area.
ASD advocated strongly argue spectrum children should be seen as a “difference to be recognized” instead of a “disorder to be cured.”
And what better time to explore this topic than Autism Awareness Month?
Upon my first attempt, my question was immediately answered. Connecting noise protection devices and someone diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) would be easy. My computer was flooded with research and websites with ASD information. Managing overstimulation and sensory sensitivity are a high priority for someone with ASD. Give this, it was obvious was a connection. HearMuffs and Kids HearMuffs are already widely utilized for their “noise protection” and sensory calming features. Anyone with ASD would benefit using Lucid Audio HearMuffs and Kid HearMuffs for their everyday use and during therapy sessions.
Great! That was easy. Now what?
Well, my search didn’t end there!
As I continued on, I was led down a path more thought-provoking than simply connecting our products to the ASD community.
In fact, what I stumbled upon profoundly and beautifully altered my perception of the Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) community.
I knew there was a slew of resources. What I was not expecting, was to recognize many children (including mine) not on the spectrum, are walking away from their PlayStations and putting down their smartphones. They are opting to play with sensory soothing tools. Such tools originally marketed and advertised for someone with ASD. Products including fidget spinners, slime, and squishies to name a few are important components (and have been for many years) components utilized during ASD therapy and everyday use. I don’t know about you, but all three have recently taken over my home and the everyday lives of my children.
Given this fact, it is imperative to give pause to the idea our children are grasping for toys with sensory soothing features. They are actually craving a break from the daily chaos and noises of their lives.
These newly named, “kid craze” and “trend toys” keeping our children company have been around as early as the 1970s. For decades now, they have been tools vital in assisting sensory and fine motor skill development. They work to regulate and independently calm children. They become less anxious in and able to cope with obsessive behaviors.
Many teachers and parents outside of the ASD community see these toys as distracting, pointless, and messy. Especially now that playgrounds have become a fidget and squishy black market. And kitchens into Do-It-Yourself Slime labs. When they are actually great tools for giving a pleasing and calming sensory experience. Thus the urge for them to become distracted dissipates.
If we can shift our focus from being a fad, we could potentially tackle all levels of over stimulation and hypersensitivity that lie within all of our children.
If you know any child that would like comfort and protection from their fast-paced routines and over stimulating activities, regardless of diagnoses, check out Lucid Audio’s Kid HearMuffs. Their revolutionary technology, kid-approved features, and quality comfort and protection have made them a hit with all children. Lucid’s Kid HearMuffs are Audiologist-Approved. To add, they hold an industry-leading 22 Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) and the patented GrowBand allows HearMuffs to grow with any child starting at infancy.
At the end of the day, I am not only confident Lucid Audio’s HearMuffs and Kids HearMuffs could benefit ASD children just like all children, but ASD children are not so different from my children (our children) after all.