Staying connected with family when you’re away from home

As much as we'd like to, the reality is that we can’t always be with our little ones in person. So whether you're a road trip or a plane ride away, here’s how you can stay connected with them from afar with the help of Creative-Tonies.

Published 26/07/23 by Amy Blanchard

Staying connected with family when you’re away from home

// chatted with Craig, Dad to Henry, Mabel and Rosie, to see how he calls on the help of Creative-Tonies to keep him close to home when he’s at work. Craig has to leave on a jet plane and have lots of (not so fun!) sleepovers away from home…

What do you use the Creative-Tonies for?

// the lead up to going away with work, I record myself reading our favourite bedtime stories to Henry. As soon as I leave for work, Henry grabs his Creative-Tonie and pops it on his Toniebox to hear my voice. That really does pull at the heartstrings. While I'm away, I also record some stories on the app about what I’ve done there that day or some fun facts about the place I’m visiting so he can feel like he’s there with me. I like to think this is also helping him learn new skills and facts about the world.

What is the best thing you’ve recorded on the Creative-Tonie?

// has just started school so I really wanted to play a part in this big milestone even if I couldn’t be there. My wife has been filling me in with what he’s learning at the moment and I’ve been recording some helpful quizzes and games for him to listen to and practice.

How do you use Creative-Tonies for family time?

// I’m away a lot, we make sure we prioritise holidays where we can spend time together as a family. While we’re there Henry and I record little stories together about what we did for the day on holiday. He loves listening to these while I’m away and I love that we’re creating long-lasting family memories for the future.

What is it you love about the Toniebox?

The superwoman that is my wife, single-handedly juggles three kids while I’m away and usually screen time would be a saving grace. The Toniebox however, lets her get an hour or more of catch up whilst the kids are entertained, without having any overstimulation from screens. We also use it as part of the kids bedtime routine which definitely helps wind them down. We recently started using the Night Light which I can also record goodnight messages onto when I’m away, it’s such a great invention!

Need some more inspiration?

Here’s what other families love about their Creative-Tonies and some ideas on what they are recording to keep them connected with family…

Heidi, Sleep Expert at @positivelyparenthood “As a busy working mummy, it’s not unusual for me to have to miss out on bedtime and like all children, my boys have been through periods of separation anxiety. We love that the Creative Tonie allows you to pre-record a message to your child, so that they can hear goodnight and sleep tight from you, no matter who is putting them to bed!”

Aleksander, Dad to Jan “We have recorded songs and stories in Polish and English. We live away from our families so it's a way for our son to connect with our family through tracks they record for him.”

James, Dad to Jessica and Ava “My children’s long distance grandparents recorded their childhood histories on a Creative-Tonie for each of my children to listen to and learn about.”

Hannah, Mum to Arthur “We live in Scotland but my family all live in Newcastle where I’m from. On a recent trip back we had my family all record different stories that Arthur loved. Then Arthur can listen to his favourite stories from his favourite people even if they are far away. It helps keep us all connected.”

Lucy, Mum to Rex “Daddy leaves messages and stories for Rex when he’s deployed with the Royal Navy, he does this from anywhere in the world using the app.”

So how do you record a story on your Creative-Tonie?

Recording audio onto your Creative-Tonie could not be simpler!

  • Open the app, select your Creative-Tonie, and press the red icon with the white microphone.

  • Once you’ve finished, click save and the app will upload the content.

  • Pop their Creative-Tonie on the Toniebox, press any ear for three seconds, and wait for the LED to blink blue. Once the LED glows green, you know you’re all set.

  • Use your Tonies account to rearrange the track listings so you can organise a playlist in an order that works for your child.

  • You can invite your friends to share audio, and add as many Creative-Tonies to your account as you like, the sky’s the limit!

How do I assign free content to my Creative-Tonie using the mytonies app? 

  • Open the mytonies app and tap to open the 'Library' tab on the bottom of the screen.

  • View the ‘Free for you’ section of the library to see the list of currently available free content. Then tap on the name of the content you would like to assign. 

  • Tap on the red tonies® logo with an arrow at the bottom of the screen.

  • This will display a list of available Creative-Tonies you can assign the content to.

  • A green checkmark will be displayed next to the picture of the Creative-Tonie you have selected. Once you are done selecting the Creative-Tonie, tap on the red assign button.

  • The free content is now assigned to your Creative-Tonie! Now, you will just need to sync your Toniebox in order to download the new content. To do this, simply turn on the Toniebox and pinch one of the Toniebox ears for about three seconds until you hear a sound. The LED will begin flashing blue while your Toniebox updates with the new content. You can then place the Creative-Tonie onto the Toniebox when the light turns solid green. The new content will then be played and downloaded simultaneously.

With Creative-Tonies, you choose what you put on them, so it’s time to get CREATIVE!

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About Amy Blanchard

Amy Blanchard
Amy’s favourite Tonie is Matilda. From a very young age, she was utterly obsessed with Matilda. She watched and read it so many times that she practically had the whole script memorised. As she grew older, she remained just like Matilda, a bookworm, a trickster, and a dreamer!