Posts tagged with "Consider an extra for the grandparents"

A supersize calendar helps busy families get it done

April 15, 2024

The mental math of modern parenting—Can you drive child A to soccer practice before child B needs to be picked up from the orthodontist, with a stop at the pet store, leaving enough time to make a healthy dinner?—has a new ally called the Skylight Calendar Max, reports The Wall Street Journal.

At first glance, it looks similar to Skylight’s popular digital picture frames, which the Journal’s section, Buy Side has tested and recommendsbut it’s actually an extremely useful household organizer you can operate via its touch screen or accompanying app. Share calendar entries, make grocery lists, assign and check off

Now that Journal writer Leslie Yazel has tested this tool, she says, “It’s stressful to see households relying on paper calendars with their collage of scribbled chore lists, ALLCAPS reminders and shadings of grocery items under a wash of coffee drips and corn-flake milk. (I’ve been known to take an iPhone photo of a paper grocery list myself, so no judgment here.)

Yazel says, “If a Skylight Frame is within your budget, it promises to make many aspects of a busy life easier—you may even be able to nag your kids less. I know, right?”

The new, larger 27-inch Max can be wall-mounted portrait or landscape, so you don’t have to worry about it being knocked off a counter. Plus, you can hang it where younger kids can see it and use its touch screen to mark chores as finished. It also has a higher resolution at 2560 x 1440. And its new rounded corners and shadow box option are nice design upgrades that make it seem less dutiful and more decor.

And while Yazel says she is nostalgic “for my days as a singleton, when I just used a charming paper daily planner,” she raves that “the Max is simple to use. Set up took about 15 minutes and it was easier to connect it to Wi-Fi than even my fancy Dyson air purifier. Invite everyone in the family to download the app and sync their calendars—also fast and easy—and see everyone’s schedule at once with color coding.”

Now, your smart-phone-wielding teen can’t say that he or she didn’t know it was his or her turn to take out the garbage—especially if they have push notifications turned on.

Meanwhile, younger kids can check the mounted touch screen and see their chores by color and have the satisfaction of marking them done when finished. You can even add emojis to help early readers: a bed for making the bed, etc.

And if you don’t have the energy to holler at a kid to do their chores? It’s rather satisfying to make an exaggerated, sarcastic-yet-silent sweeping gesture toward the calendar to get your point across.

One important note: If you’re hoping to also use your Skylight Calendar Max as a digital picture frame, there is an annual subscription fee of $40. That can add up over the years. Skylight has a promotion on now with $30 off when you purchase the Max and a year of its subscription Plus Plan.

If your family is big into kids’ team sports, with practices in various coach-selected apps, the Max should be compatible with sports calendars that publish an ICS URL. A Skylight spokesperson says the company “is exploring making the integrations even easier within our app.” For any app or calendar that isn’t compatible, Skylight notes that its Magic Import feature—the only calendar feature that requires its subscription plan—“allows parents to convert PDFs and screenshots of calendar views into events” on the Max calendar.

After running into a mom with a half-dozen kids in a blended family who uses a Skylight Calendar, I got this pro tip: Consider buying an additional Skylight Calendar—they come in 15-inch and 10-inch sizes—for the grandparents. This can cut down on calls or texts each week asking when baseball games start or where dance recitals are taking place. You can also add the subscription fee and load it up with photos of any events they may miss. Perhaps a worth-it price for keeping extended family happy and feeling in the loop.

Research contact: @WSJ