Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Going unplugged.....ok, or not.

Do you ever get so sick of everyone being completely tuned in to their electronic device and ignoring the world around them that you want to throw them all out the window and unplug everything (throw the devices, not the people out the window...just to be clear)?

Well, if I'm being honest, I want my kids to throw theirs out but let me keep mine and not give me that judgmental look when I just glance at Facebook or chat with my sisters for 30 minutes after I just threw a small fit that they are online too much. Ha. Total double standard in my dream home's electronic usage, I know. I'm not proud.

So here we are...new year, new plan. I decided that we can't exactly give it all up in this day and age and join an Amish community. I would be 97.5% suckier as a homeschool mom if I didn't have all the information in the world in my pocket at all times. And how would I immediately know if Baja Jacks has any artificial colors in their food if I hadn't instantly been notified that they replied to my message? This is important, right? I deserve to know these things...instantly, right? Ugh - total addict!

Last summer, we purchased a Circle with Disney device (#notasponsor ... or an affiliate link, but only bc I don't know how to do that or I'd totally affiliate ya up - ha.) and I love it. It gives us total control over the wifi in the house. We have assigned each of our devices to their owner and allowed different levels of access, times of access, and duration of access...all controlled by a handy dandy app on my phone. If a kid's friend comes over and logs into our wifi, I get a notification (on my phone and watch..see, I need it!!) and can set their parameters too. We can pause the wifi on one person's account or on the whole house with the touch of a button (useful when we've said to do something and they didn't listen bc they were in the middle of a Netflix binge of Cake Boss or something equally as educational).

The Circle is fantastic...but doesn't control non-wifi electronic use.  I've found that if I cut someone's wifi, they just move to a different avenue to get their electronics "fix" and it's making me nuts. I guess an app that cuts the electricity to one person only hasn't been invented yet. I'll get thinking on that!

So, I've typed up this bad boy that we started on the 1st and we will see how it goes. Basically, they have to earn their wifi each day by completing the things on the list BEFORE I'll unpause their wifi or let them use any electronics. I had to specify "except for school" so they didn't use this as an excuse to not do math or type a paper bc those use the computer. ha. I try to stay a step ahead, although more often than not, I probably just think I'm a step ahead.

We will see how this goes. It's just for T and P right now as C seems to get his stuff done and, quite frankly, is 17 and needs to learn how to manage his own time and all because momma won't be there policing him for much longer. He is on the Circle and limits are placed on his wifi content though. I'd rather he learn to fly here, than crash when he leaves because he didn't get to learn about time management through trial and error in a safe environment where the stakes aren't really that high...yet. 

Worth a shot. As for me? I'm just making more of an effort to leave my phone back in the bedroom or my purse more and not carry it around with me. I've temporarily missed calls and texts but you know what? We all survived and it would totally be ok for me to have not seen Moriah's spectacular  NYE performance until a little later than everyone else.  It will still a train wreck wrapped in a hot mess as it's replayed for years to come. Bless her. It's ok to not reply as soon as a text comes in. Life will go on. I never answer the phone anyway so that won't change...haha.

Here's to hoping this helps us all be more productive and more social in person and not just social online in 2017!

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