They’ve come up with 5,000 different types of baby carriers and twice as many strollers. There is a sippy cup to suit my son’s every mood, and the NSA might want to look into harnessing the power of today’s baby monitors. There is a wonderful array of products we never even knew we needed out there. But I can’t be the only mother of a toddler wondering why product developers haven’t managed to solve my real problems.

Can they tame this willful creature that took the place of my sweet baby? Can they keep him safe – and I mean when he’s not in that giant monstrosity of a car seat I spent too much money on? And can they help me stop stressing out for a minute and actually enjoy being a mom? If you people in your magical labs of science want to be useful, you’ll get to work creating these:

1. A Cone of Silence

On Get Smart, this was supposed to allow for secret conversations inside a transparent bubble (don’t ask me why it was called a “cone”). We want the reverse – a cone that allows us to place our sleeping children within our sight, but won’t let them hear anything we’re doing. Imagine the dinner dates!

 

2. Detachable Arms

Sometimes the kid just won’t take his nap or go down for the night unless someone caresses him constantly. This is great. It’s nice to feel wanted, after all … until we remember all the phone calls, emails, reading, housework and, oh, yeah, sleeping we planned to do on our own. I’m pretty sure we could do all that with just one arm (I mean, we’ve done a lot of it while carrying a child), so why couldn’t we just leave the other arm behind to do the comforting?

 

3. A Protective Force Field

We’re not picky about this one, if you inventors want to create something that goes around all dangerous items or around the kid, it’s up to you. Just lovingly block their falls and their access to the sharp/electric/strangle-y/chokeable objects we swore we put out of reach last week but have somehow rematerialized in the wrong places exactly when we’ve turned out backs. If version 2.0 could include UV protection and bug repellent, too, we’d much appreciate it.

 

4. The Freeze Ray Gun

Hey, we love the way our little ones can move around on their own, but if we could just zap them every once in a while and temporarily freeze them to change a diaper, give them medicine, keep them from running into the street, that would be super convenient. We’ll pay extra for the model that tickles them, too.

 

5. Guilt Off-Switch

Whether it’s having to leave our children in the care of others, watching them suffer from all those colds, or just knowing they’ll inherit our unruly eyebrows, we would prefer if we could just turn off the tormenting guilt over things that are totally and completely out of our control.