After realizing her daughter was scared of automatic flushing toilets, Toledo mom Angie Gall created patches to block the motion detector.
Automatic-flush toilets wouldn’t seem to be one of the scary parts of our world, but for many children, the sudden loud noise can be extremely startling, perhaps even keeping them from using the bathroom.
To soothe the experience for sensory sensitive children, two Toledo friends teamed up to create something helpful. Rebecca Booth, owner of Marketing Works… Imagine That, LLC and author Angie Gall, brought together their award-winning creative talents to make a magic eye patch and a children’s book.
Angie Gall, author of the book Captain Andy’s Magic Eye Patch, explained that her daughter was frightened when using automatic flushing toilets: “She does not like loud noises, so if she saw a toilet without a handle, she knew it was going to flush by itself and wouldn’t use the bathroom… I was tired of doing ‘restroom yoga,’ trying to cover the eye [toilet sensor] with one hand, help my preschooler, while keeping my purse and bags off the restroom floor.”
In an effort to help others with a similar challenge, Gall and her friend Rebecca Booth, illustrator of the book, developed eye patches to cover the toilet sensor. “We kind of went backwards in the whole process… I really wished there was something to cover that eye, so we developed the patch and then began with the book,” explained Gall.
“Patch…pirate…made sense,” added Booth.
The story is about a young boy, Captain Andy, spending the day with his mom, when he needs to the use the restroom. However, when he sees the sensor on the automatic toilets, he envisions it to be the red eye of a water monster. With the use of his eye patches, he can use the bathroom without fear. Andy even shares an eye patch with a new friend.
The book and products are geared towards autistic children, or children with sensory sensitivities. However, the book has also been of interest to all children and even adults who simply don’t like automatic flushing toilets.
The process of writing the book and developing the product was quick. “We started in February or March, so it was about three or four months from concept to book,” stated Gall. “It was a really fun project. We’re used to corporate work, so this was a big change.”
Empowerment for Children
The book comes with 15 eye patches, which are meant to be a tool to help children gain a sense of independence. Rather than having to rely on their parents to come in the bathroom and block the sensor, children can simply peel off the back of the eye patch and stick it to the sensor like a sticker. “We want to help empower anybody,” explained Booth. Eye patch refills can be reordered online.
To continue helping children gain a sense of independence, Booth and Gall are already working on their next Captain Andy product, a visual calendar. “Kids are visual learners, so we’re looking to do a visual calendar with magnets. It’ll be so easy for them to see their daily schedule,” Booth said.
Captain Andy’s Magic Eye Patch can be purchased online,
along with the eye patches and refills, at etsy.com/shop/2girlscanpublishing
For more information about Captain Andy,
please visit the Facebook page at Captain Andy’s Magic Eye Patch