Disclosure: This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CloudPetsForever #CollectiveBias

Dear Diary,

This is the first time in my daughter’s life that we’ve gone a week without speaking. I know I should welcome the me time—perhaps go the gym to jumpstart my workout routine, read the dozens of books collecting dust on my shelves or get that much overdue manicure. But even if I stay busy, I won’t miss my little love bug any less. She’s on vacation with her father. Usually, when she spends time out of town, we video chat daily. Being that she’s out of the country, our communication is on hold.

Caitlnn at Beach

She’s the most well traveled toddler I know! And she’s well taken care of—the trip is full of good food, fun activities and plenty of presents. But I’m sure she misses her mommy. She didn’t understand why I couldn’t call her while she’s away. Next month, she’ll go to Disney World and on another cruise. And I’m sure other vacations are on the horizon. So, I want her to take a piece of her parent wherever she goes. Despite her dad’s suggestion of a blended family vacation, I don’t think I’ll be packing a bag to join them anytime soon! I can send CloudPets™ in my absence!


I picked up the Walmart Exclusive Unicorn—Caitlynn’s favorite imaginary animal, and three AA batteries, which were in the pallet display. CloudPets™ also come in Teddy Bear, Puppy, Kitty or Bunny.  CloudPets™ are available in select Walmart stores, but will be available nationwide soon.

I then downloaded a free app and registered our animal online. After you’re set up, you can invite friends and family to send a message to the pet. The pet’s heart will flash to alert you that you have a message. You can hear the message on your CloudPets™ and then record a message back. There are parental controls, and only invited friends and family can join the conversation. There is also a 2.0 version of the app that includes games and lullabies! This new, one-of-a-kind product will help me keep in touch with Caitlynn when she’s away. Plus, I don’t have to always contact her on her dad’s schedule or interrupt an activity.

CloudPet Collage

While Caitlynn is away, I decided to snap some shots of her unicorn in a Flat Stanley fashion. In the popular children’s book, a bulletin board fell on Stanley Lambchop, and flattened him in his sleep. He survived and makes the best of his situation by mailing himself to friends and attractions. When I lived in the Cayman Islands, my sorority sister’s kindergarten class mailed Flat Stanley to me. I returned him with a completed journal and some souvenirs, including post cards from Stingray City, pictures at the butterfly farm and seashells from Seven Mile Beach. Caitlynn’s modern day Flat Stanley headed to her favorite places.

The Art Studio

CloudPets at the Art Studio

The Duck Pond

CloudPets at the Duck Pond

The Park

CloudPets at the Park

The Library

CloudPet at the Library

Soon, I’ll send the unicorn and the pictures to Caitlynn. Then, her father and I can exchange the  CloudPets™ during our custodial exchanges.

Hey DTFM Fam—Who would you give CloudPets™ to as a gift? What message would you send?

About The Author

Vlog Mom/DFTM Creator

Not long ago, Heather Hopson hosted a television show in the Cayman Islands. Today, she's back home writing a different kind of story as a new mom. In her 15 years working as a professional journalist, this by far is her best assignment! Growing up, she dreamed of becoming Oprah Winfrey. She was the features editor for her school’s newspaper and a teen talk show host for her city’s most popular radio station. She went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Michigan State University. After graduation, she worked as a television producer and reporter at CBS, NBC and Fox affiliates throughout the U.S. Instead of heading to Chicago to join Ms. Winfrey on her set, she bought a plane ticket to the Cayman Islands instead. She arrived five days before a category five hurricane! She lived in paradise for seven years, hosted an award-winning television show and traveled the globe with a government delegation. She also served on the board of directors for Big Brothers Big Sisters and spearheaded a Send a Kid to Camp campaign. Then, she relocated to Washington, D.C. to obtain a teaching certification and instruct 8th grade reading at a high needs middle school. She later returned to her hometown of Pittsburgh, PA to raise her daughter Caitlynn, now 4-years-old. During her 10-month-stint as a stay-at-home mom, Caitlynn inspired her to create this blog, and Diary of a First Time Mom was born on Mother’s Day 2012. Two years later, she expanded the family to include 20+ writers. Currently, Heather serves as the communications director at Allies for Children. In addition, she is the owner of Motor Mouth Multimedia, which ranked #49 in Startup Nation’s Home-Based 100 Competition sponsored by Discover Card and Sam’s Club. Recently, The Pittsburgh Foundation and The Heinz Endowments selected Heather to receive an Emerging Black Artist award to develop Diary of a First Time Mom.

2 Responses

  1. JanetGoingCrazy

    What a great idea for kids who have to go with one parent or another! I never would have thought of this, but I know a ton of families who would love this. [client]

  2. Adanna

    Oh this is Brillant! I wouldn’t of ever thought of this if my kids would be away and I would of probably buried myself in ice cream (after a mani pedi of course) LOL


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