My Gnome on the Roam

Summer is so BUSY. Games and camps and vacations and before you know it, September is upon us. I love anything that encourages us to slow down a little and really spend time together as a family, which is why I’m so excited about My Gnome on the Roam. Think along the lines of Elf on the Shelf or Flat Stanley but more interactive, more personal and perhaps more applicable to the hectic lives we all lead.

The mission of My Gnome on the Roam is to “inspire busy families to connect, create and explore.” Creators of this innovative toy explain that since the average family only spends 38.5 minutes per week connecting in a meaningful way, their aim is to provide you with the tools you need to spark those connections and create memories that will last a lifetime. Being there, and truly being present, is the most important. So relevant and true for so many of us! I especially like that the goal of this kit is to not have to force unnatural activities or conversations on families on a daily basis. Instead, users are encouraged to pick a couple of days a week and only 15 minutes per day to spend meaningful time together. That seemed do-able and very realistic to me.

Your Gnome on the Roam arrives in the most adorable packaging – a cardboard suitcase – that in and of itself hints of the adventures to come. Unlatch the cover and you’ll find your My Gnome on the Roam adventure kit inside. The kit consists of your Gnome, who is completely unadorned and thus ready to be customized and decorated by you and your family, as well as a journal, pen, storybook and helpful adventure guide that provides suggestions on how to use your new kit. My kids were immediately interested in the suitcase and had fun guessing what the “surprise” was inside. They weren’t disappointed!

Suitcase contents

Before we really dug into the kit, I sat down with both my children and read the storybook. They were immediately intrigued by the story about the curious gnome who experiences adventures with the little girl. After we read the story I brought out the suitcase and they were really taken by the packaging and the tie-in with the book.


Next we decided to decorate our gnome. Both kids took turns with our washable Crayola markers, and I was pleased to see that the color stayed on and didn’t rub off over time (which sometimes happens with the washable markers). The kiddos had fun personalizing “Nick” (their chosen name) and bringing him to life. Owners of new gnomes can also log on to the web site to “adopt” their gnome to the Adventurer’s Club and register him or her!

Now that we had completed all of our initial set-up steps, we started including our gnome in all of our daily activities and excursions. It’s amazing how much more aware you become of what you do every day and how even small, mundane tasks (like going to the grocery store) become a little more fun and exciting because you’re bringing the gnome with you and documenting the “adventure” later. For example, simply sitting on the front steps of our house with popsicles on a hot day, as the gnome sat with us, I realized that the simple moments together were those that would become my children’s memories of their childhood. Our gnome also accompanied my son on a ride in his motorized dump truck and watched us from the dashboard of my car as we played in the park. And later, when I would document these moments in the journal, I realized I was making a written record that helped me to not overlook our time together and to really reflect on the connections I was making with both kids.



I also downloaded the My Gnome on the Roam app, which is free in the iTunes Store. It provides users with a daily inspiration for communicating, playing and exploring with your child(ren). It’s a great “check-in” on a daily basis for And, be sure to check out the web site and enter your email for a subscription You’ll receive a plethora of helpful hints and suggestions for making the most of your adventures with your family. I especially loved the “story starters, wonder words and notable quotables” download as a starting point for capturing our experiences in the journals.

Want a gnome of your own? Buy one on the web site for only $29.97. And, for a limited time only, we are giving away a free Gnome on the Roam kit a lucky reader (U.S. only, please)!

Win a My Gnome on the Roam Suitcase




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