This is a partnered post on behalf of Tech Time Out. All words and opinions are my own.
There’s no doubt that tech devices are pretty much cemented as part of our daily lives. People text, Tweet, and Facebook status-update 24 hours a day. Video games are no longer just PC or console based; they’re at your smartphone fingertips. And phone calls are almost a thing of the past with Skype and other face-talk programs on our phones and PCs.
I’m actually a huge supporter of using technology to it’s fullest. My father took one of the first computer courses available at a local college when I was probably 4 years old. I learned to make the screen change colors and play “music” by programming on the Commodore 64 he bought on which to practice (yes, I’m that old). By the time I was in high school, I had my first webpage (anyone remember Geocities?), was teaching adult ed classes on how to use the Internet, and was working for my school’s computer-building start-up company.
Now, especially as a blogger, I’m rarely further than arm’s length from my phone or my laptop. We read books on our Nook or Kindle phone app. Bubbles has a LeapPad and needs no help pulling up ebooks, using the coloring apps, or playing any of the educational games. She knows terms like “download” and “app store” – terms that I didn’t know practically until I was in college.
But as much as I embrace where we are, I do sometimes miss the days before every move was checked in on Foursquare and each meal was shared on Instagram. I miss when people sat at the table and spoke to each other; not sat with their heads hanging down in their laps texting other people. I actually think it’s rude to ignore present company in favor of bytes and bits, and that will not be allowed at our dinner table as Bubbles gets older (sorry, kiddo).
So when we had the opportunity this past weekend to take the pledge for a tech time out I was happy to get on board. We actually play outside, go shopping, visit the zoo, etc. on a pretty regular basis, so it wasn’t a shock to our system (though I might be a tiny bit guilty of sharing some of our fun as it happens on Instagram. Oops.) And it was just for an hour per day; really, unplugging for a single hour per day should not send anyone into panic mode. Besides, there’s lots that you can accomplish in an hour!
Our Tech Time Out Results
The first day of our tech time out was devoted to blowing bubbles outside. It’s one of my daughter’s favorite activities and she’d stay out blowing them all day if the weather cooperated. It was a bit on the warm side, but still very relaxing to sit out on the back steps and watch glistening orbs float through the sky. She had fun and Mommy got a little bit more tan on her arms. Score.
Day two had me alternating between reading books and building Play-Doh canister towers (don’t ask) with Bubbles while hubby took care of a couple of honey-do checklist items. Then on Sunday during our 3rd hour of tech time out hubby got to color with Bubbles while I did a bit of kitchen organization. This was, of course, worked in around all of the football games.
Tech Time Out Suggestions
I would encourage you all to take the tech time out pledge, also, and find a fun activity in which to participate. You can use the above list to spark your creativity if need be. Numbers 1, 26, 27, and 31 are some of our favorite regular activities.