winging it mum

My SMART phone is making me dumb!

When the iPhone first came out I thought to myself, I don’t really need that. I just need a mobile phone to make calls from, to SMS on and to take photos and shoot videos on. So I watched on as more and more of my close friends and family got these phones and they seemed to be on them non stop! I shock my head at them and thought my goodness this is crazy! Life is happening around them but they are not noticing as they are fixated on their phones!

Then all of sudden I needed a new phone.

My side note/rant is how annoying is it that these days that technology is made

to only have a short life-span so we are forced to upgrade and get the latest

gadget as to repair the existing or replace batteries etc is so expensive!

So I was faced with a decision. Did I get a SMART phone (the pretty white iPhones had just been released) or just get a basic phone? My choice was made and I went with the iPhone, vowing to myself that I would not turn into one of those people with my phone on me at all times, obsessed with things I didn’t need to be, at times that I didn’t need to be.

So how am I going with that you ask?

I am a failure:(

With a SMART phone you can buy and down load applications (apps) onto phone and they are there to aid you as you go about your daily life!

Some of my well used apps are:

  • Facebook – most of my Facebook time now is done on my iPhone. You can’t do everything that you can on a computer but you can do most things
  • weather zone – so we can check the weather whilst preparing for the day
  • hey tell – this app allows you to send voice messages to others and saves you from having to text
  • NAB – I can do my banking from my phone
  • eBay – If I am watching some items on eBay it will remind me that the auction will be ending soon
  • Safari – The search engine I use for the internet
  • Flash Light – I use my phone as a torch at night when I need to go in and check on my kids
  • Find my iPhone – I often misplace my phone and Brett is able to see on his phone where mine is and show me or even send an alarm that will activate helping me to find my phone. It can even remotely lock the phone and put a pin number on it. Best app around I think:) If only they had an app to find my keys:) or do they?
  • WordPress – edit, view or read blogs (including this one)
  • Instagram – taking or editing my photos with this app is fun
  • maps – I use this like a GPS often when I travelling somewhere new
  • notes – I record my random thoughts, ideas and info on these pages
This isn’t all the apps that I have on my phone but some of the ones that I have found useful and/or I frequently use. I really don’t go hunting for these but I find new apps through friend’s recommendations and some blogs that I read etc. We also are lucky enough to have an iPad so there are some apps that I will only put on that as the SMART phone screen is too small etc. I haven’t even mentioned the ones that we have for the kids. These I might save for another post!
Generally speaking apps are designed to make my life easier, what I have found is that my life with my iPhone has become more complicated, as I become dependant and reliant on my SMART phone. I reach for the phone for everything; to solve problems, manage me, entertain me and keep me informed. I know I have a problem. I realise I am on my phone too much, not calling people but rather doing everything but! I don’t want to be a person with my phone on me at all times. With my head down as life is flashing me by.
I have had some wake up moments for me recently on this issue:
  1. I attended a parents information night at kinder and the speakers were a speech therapist and an occupational therapist. During their sharing they really touched on how much our kids love and adore us. As previously mentioned (here) when our kids play they mimic us their parents. They do this because they love us and we are their world. We were challenged to be in their world more and more! To put down our phones, computers and turn off the TV and give our kids our undivided attention as we play with them. I am sad to say that most of the room were convicted by this as we all realised that we were guilty of not doing this enough.
  2. Brett and I both want technology to be used well in our family. Brett has been conscious lately of us using our phones etc around the kids too much. We limit their exposure to TV and their use of the iPad etc but how are we modelling this to them. It will only be a matter of time until in their negotiating for more technology time that they will mention our usage. So Brett has a good point pushing for us to be more conscious of the way and manner in which we use our technology.
  3. Upon returning home from a play date in the park recently, I realised that I had left my phone at the park! We were luckily able to use my phone locator app and see it was still at the park, allocate it a pin and I was able to quickly drive there and rescue it. I was frantic about this because I could lose my expensive phone, I would lose precious photos and videos of the kids, notes that I had taken and well I panicked about how different my life would be if it were stolen! Uhuh!!!! Alarm bells hey – it’s just a phone!!!!!! (luckily enough we were reunited).
  4. I have recently become angry at my phone. I have realised that I am expecting so much from my SMART phone and it is failing to meet my expectations! I am frustrated that some of the apps I use don’t do everything that the program can do when I use it on the computer. Like when I link my new post from here to Facebook sometimes it only shows up on my news feed and not on others! Hello relax! You are using a phone and not a computer! Yes an iPhone functions like a computer but at the end of the day it is a smaller version that does have its limitations.

I am sad to say that I am addicted to my SMART phone. It has out-smarted me and attracted me with its tantalising apps, ease of use and smooth design. My intelligence has dropped as I no longer need to remember things, plan ahead as much and entertain myself. Yes, my phone has won for now but I am determined to claim back my brain, my time and cut my dependence on a device!!! I am working on my strategy as you read this and will give you updates on what I am doing and how it is going!

Surely I am not alone here. Are you addicted to your SMART phone? If any of this has prompted you to make changes as to how you use your SMART phone let me know so we can encourage each other. Also let me know what you do to limit technology usage in your house.

Em xx

20120522-211423.jpg

8 Comments »

SNAP clean!!!!

To say I struggle to keep the house clean is an understatement!!!! These days I blame the kids on the state of the house, when in fact they don’t mind cleaning up (at this stage in their lives). It’s me; when it’s a small mess I procrastinate and then it becomes a major mess and I feel too overwhelmed and under qualified to do anything about it. I want to improve in this area and need to for the sake of my kids and teaching them these life skills.
My lovely friend Bron before Christmas put up on Facebook a 12 days of Christmas cleaning challenge. I jumped onboard and each day I did a cleaning task that I had been wanting to do but had been putting off. Great concept. I am goal orientated so this kind of thing usually motivates me! This challenge worked because it was a short project do-able as a short-term goal.
In a nutshell:
I am frustrated by mess!
But possibly more frustrated with the speed at which something can go from clean to messy!!!!!
So I figure why bother? Am I alone here?
The other day I dropped Jas off at kinder and I literally threw the kids out of the van and slammed the door! Why? Because our van was a disgrace! It was so messy inside that I didn’t want anyone to see it! With the crazy changing Melbourne weather we had accumulated half our wardrobes with jackets, cardies, sun hats, shoes etc. Combined with Kinder craft and snack containers it was terrible!!! For Jas to get to the door she had to trample on everything almost risking her life!!!! When we got back to car and I put Elijah in the car and I SNAPPED!!!!
Plans to shop were put on hold (deeming this to be a major SNAP!!) I drove home with a crazy look in my eye – I was a woman on a mission (whoa whoa)!!! I had 2 1/2 hours to revolutionize our car!!!! I was going to need every minute of that!!!!! Elijah was my apprentice! Yes, he is only 18 months but he is a quick learner;) and more than happy to vacuum anything and everything and play in the van with me.
With great pleasure I threw everything out of the car! Grabbed the vacuum and no dirt, sand, dust, slime, snot or half eaten biscuit was safe! It was an eye opener the things you find! But satisfying! Instantly things looked better.
Determined to not only clean but to revolutionize (remember) it didn’t stop there! I got the interior car cleaning pack and used products I had never dream of using before or knew existed! And I got a glimpse of what the van looked like when we bought it!
I was determined to pack away all the items taken from the van properly ie not just move the mess from one place to another. Then I had to return some of the items back to the van! The pram returned. The accessories eg rain cover and sun cover (which can often be used in one day) I decided to put in a crate. I also decided to make some emergency kits and leave them in the crate too. There is now an emergency nappy kit: with 3 spare nappies, wipes, bags, and a pair of undies. Then there was an emergency supplies kit with sunscreen, band aids, paw-paw cream, deodorant and women’s products;).
Time check: 10 mins til pick up time. I went in and freshened up as SNAP cleaning is a fast paced, sweat inducing activity. I strapped Elijah into the van and smiled as I drove to kinder! I raced out of the van only to sssssllllllloooooowwwwwlllllyyyyy get Elijah out hoping someone would admire my clean van;) I thought that was a satisfying 2 1/2 hours! When Jas came back to the van she was shocked and smiled and vowed to help us keep the van like this forever!
As this event took place a few weeks ago I can happily say that the van is still clean as Brett has been using it to drive to work!!!! I miss seeing my clean van now;)
Are you a SNAP cleaner? Or what does it take for you to get cleaning? Or do you have any ideas to help inspire me?
Em xx

20120329-153929.jpg

20120329-154037.jpg

20120329-154308.jpg

20120329-154543.jpg

20120329-154629.jpg

20120329-154645.jpg

2 Comments »

Little less conversation a little more action!

Do you ever feel like the words in a song sum you up at a moment in time? Or are there some lyrics that spring to mind just when you need some encouragement? Recently the classic Elvis Presley song “A little less conversation a little more action” has come into my head (need a refresher click here). I can assure you Elvis and I aren’t referring to the same kind of action;0

I am a self-confessed “ideas” gal. I am a dreamer, you know a blue sky thinker. My mind is constantly dreaming and scheming up new concepts and particularly business ideas and/or things to do. My greatest flaw though is that I don’t really do anything with these ideas. They may just be a fleeting thought or they maybe something that I chew over and try to nut out the details of and then well leave it there.

At the age of 17; I set myself a 5 year plan.

My 5 year plan:

  1. I was to complete my VCE with excellent result
  2. I was to get into University to complete a Bachelor or Business in Catering and Hotel Management
  3. My course would include a cooperative year (industry placement) in which I would live overseas and work.
  4. I would travel the world
  5. I would work at the 2000 Sydney Olympics.

I achieved all these goals! They were all working toward my career ambition of running a chain of five-star hotels – which I didn’t end up doing but I can happily say I still love 5 star hotels and now prefer staying in them from time to time;)

But where has this driven and focused woman gone? – I hear you ask!

It’s true and something I have asked myself. For a few years there I rejected my need for planning and goal setting and I pursued a life of being a spontaneous and a fly by the seat of my pants girl. Then I became a mother and I found that both my need for goals and spontaneity would serve me well. As I work hard to bring in routine and structure to my kids lives (despite feeling like I am failing whilst doing this half the time) I am thankful for the drive I have in my character. My ability to think on my feet and love to mix things up has definitely served me well as I try to defuse situations and make it to the end of the day in one piece! Can you see how your journey has shaped you and helped you to deal with your current situation?

But I think I have fallen into the trap of maybe winging it too much! I actually started a blog previously and the theme of that blog was “to improve my ability to follow through” and to start to help me to improve in this area. Ha you can check it out here and happily note that this died very quickly – ironic really:) Then began this blog where I am to embrace my winging it nature but also strive to be faithful to the other side of me and to plan to get things done.

A little less conversation a little more action! Come on baby I’m tired of talking (followed by catchy music!)

Ok theme song popped back into my head so I better get it back to the point.

On Pinterest recently, I stumbled onto a beautiful and simple goal list (to see my original inspiration click here you won’t be sorry this is a great blog!). This list was so simple to make and definitely something that could help me to actually get back to achieving some specific goals and not just the one of surviving the day. I love that you can set different time frames in which to achieve your goals but am a little daunted by the fact I need to set 6 goals. I want to achieve these and so I haven’t made them impossible or not too easy that there is no challenge. Be fair to yourself and remember that Rome wasn’t built-in a day (more song lyrics hey!). I have made these goals personal ones for me and not for the kids etc because I feel that I need to look after me and not solely focus on them all of the time, although I will involve them in the journey.

Give it a go. Set yourself some goals and let’s see how we go!

Em xx

20120306-151306.jpg

my goal list for March - design from Cornflower Blue Art

12 Comments »