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GeniCan in the News

GeniCan in the News
Smartphone, smartwatch...smart trashcan? Yup. Welcome to the world of GeniCan, the device that attaches to your garbage or recycle bin and adds items to your list as you scan and throw them away. While at first it may seem a little ridiculous to some, this is the future of shopping and the press is taking note.

Here are just some of the articles tech journalists have written about GeniCan. And the results are pretty much the same – it’s time to throw away your shopping list.

Teach Your Kids Responsibility through Age-Appropriate Chores

Teach Your Kids Responsibility through Age-Appropriate Chores

Raising kids sure ain’t easy. Raising responsible kids sometimes feels downright impossible. As parents, we feel a strong obligation to, well, not mess up this parenting thing. I think we can agree that, as an end result, we want well-adapted, nice, and responsible kids who can then grow into well-adapted, nice, and responsible adults.

            One way to teach kids responsibility is to assign them chores. Studies show that children who complete weekly chores feel a stronger sense of contribution and accomplishment, which ultimately leads to overall feel good vibes and happier kids. Seriously!

            Here’s a quick guide to some age-appropriate chores you can start introducing in your own households:

Ages 3-6

Chores at this age should be simple one-step things that serve to introduce the concept. At this age, children are not motivated by money, and introducing dollars into the equation will only muddy the waters. So put away your wallet. But do feel free to layer on the praise and high-fives.

  1. Clean Up Toys

This is a simple repetitive task that should be required of the child every time he leaves a play area and before he moves on to the next spot. Clean up can be fun, and many parents and educators introduce silly songs to make this chore feel more like play. Toys don’t have to be put away exactly—remember, it’s the concept of the chore here. So what if your child shoves all of the play cooking items into the play kitchen sink? If your inner neat freak can’t handle, go back in after they go to bed and rearrange.

  1. Clear Your Plate

If your kid eats off of one of those plastic kid plates and you don’t mind a few crumbs possibly falling to the floor, the task of clearing one’s plate from the table is a great one for little kids. The younger children may need some assistance, but they should feel like they’re helping. Clearing the plate might be as simple as walking it from the kitchen table to the kitchen counter, but, hey, it’s something! 

  1. Put clothes in the laundry basket

My kids love running their dirty clothes from their room to the laundry room and adding them to the growing pile—and most often they do this while running through the house in their birthday suits. Sometimes we add to this chore by having the kids “shoot” their socks into the laundry basket. Their basketball-loving dad loves this particular chore!

Ages 7-12

At this age, kids can be given a bit more responsibility and trusted with more valuable items. You can also build upon the simple chores you assigned them when they were younger, and add multi-step tasks to the equation.

  1. Load and Unload the Dishwasher

Beyond just clearing their plates, kids should now start the habit of loading their plates into the dishwasher and putting away clean plates when they’re done. Depending on their height, you may need to assist with the high cabinets, but kids at this age can be trusted with some of your more fragile plates and cups.

  1. Vacuum and Sweep

Sunday mornings in my house are my vacuum mornings. Particularly during mud season, when everyone and the dog traipses dirt, leaves, and wet grass into the house, it’s important to keep this a weekly habit. But now kids of this age can join in. Have them vacuum the stairs or pull out the old dustpan and dust certain rooms. Partaking in this chore might always make them more aware of taking off their shoes before running into the rest of the house.

  1. Help Make Dinner

Cooking can be a lot of fun when you involve the family. Even my preschool-aged daughter helps with shucking corn. Older kids can be more trusted with a knife or a peeler, so they can act as your sous-chef and prep things while you handle the stove and more complicated cooking tasks. This is not only a great chore, but it’s an opportunity to teach your child about healthy eating and nutritious foods. Double win!

  1. Take Out the Garbage and Recycling

Now that their muscles are more developed, kids can handle lugging the garbage outside. Better yet, GeniCan makes it easier to get kids involved by sensing when the garbage will over flow and by sending your kids an alert to their devices that the garbage needs to be taken out. Pretty sweet, huh?

Ages 13 and Up

At this point, there really isn’t much the kids in this age group can’t handle. So if you can dream up the chore, they can probably do it. You may also want to consider introducing the concept of allowance. It’s your call, but money can be quite the motivator for this group.

  1. Clean Entire Rooms

This chore encompasses several smaller chores (again, building upon the chores the kids have been doing for a while now). Put each child in charge of a room, and enlist him to dust, mop/vacuum/sweep, wash windows, etc. 

  1. Do Laundry

It’s good to introduce the laundry chore to your teenager—besides, he’ll have to do his own laundry when he’s off to college! Learning to wash, dry, and iron clothes is an important life skill, so let them have at it. Bonus? It gets you out of having to touch those super stinky soccer socks!

  1. Babysit

This chore might be appropriate for the pre-teen crowd, too, but only you know your kid—you can decide when is the right time to put him in charge of others. Many kids start out as “mother’s helpers,” meaning they watch the kids outside or in a back playroom while Mom (or Dad) is still home. Close enough for any immediate emergency but far enough removed so that the kid has responsibility over the younger child. This is also the time when many teenagers start babysitting regularly for some income, so, before sending them out to watch neighborhood kids, make sure they get some practice at home first.

Photo by Frisno Bostrom/Flickr

Freshen Up Your Garbage Can with These Sleek New Designs

Tired of that ugly garbage can monstrosity putting a damper on the beautiful design of your new kitchen? If you’re one of the many households who don’t have under-sink or in-cabinet garbage can hideouts, these sleek new designs can help turn that exposed garbage can blemish into a work of art.

Classic & Modern

Grossed out by the thought of having to touch that germ-filled garbage can lid? Then this is the perfect design for you. Simple Human’s touch-free “sensor can” opens at the mere whisper of, “Open can.” Wow! The classic brushed stainless steel surface and contemporary lines on this garbage can will allow it to fit seamlessly in your beautiful, modern kitchen.

Sculptured Masterpieces

For a little more beauty in your kitchen, try this offbeat but eye-pleasing can that will surely jazz up your cooking space. It’s the Essey “Bin Bin” trash can, and it’s designed to look liked a crumbled piece of paper—how cool is that? It’ll turn tossing out garbage from a chore into a fun game.

Fun Conversation Starter

Looking for a little bit more quirk for your kitchen space? Or maybe you just want to impress your Star Wars-obsessed friends? Try this! It’s an R2 D2 garbage can! Let me repeat. An R2 D2 garbage can! A hidden foot pedal makes this one easy to open, and R2 D2 can hold an impressive amount of trash.

Smells like Roses

No one likes a smelly trash can. Thankfully, this one comes with a built-in deodorizer. The iTouchless Deodorizer Sensor Trash Can might just be the perfect kitchen soul mate. Combined with the can’s simple and classic outer design, this is the ideal can for a busy kitchen (or, ahem, as an alternative to a diaper genie). Even if the garbage is at capacity (and that might take awhile, given the generous container space), it emits no smells. Perfect! Now if only our kids came with a built-in deodorizer…