I only gave it up last year.
My darling little flip phone.
I was so proud of how long I hung onto it. How capable I was of waiting in a line somewhere without pulling out a device.
I put it off because I knew I’d fall hard for the iPhone. And we all know once you make the jump, there’s no going back.
A year later, I admit I’ve used my phone while waiting in a line a time or two (or three or four…). But in addition to all the ways our devices distract us from what’s really in front of us (ie. people), I’ve noticed some little ways that having an iPhone is making my family life simpler and more connected. Surprising, huh?
IknowIknow that some of this applies to any type of smart phone. I blame my minor Apple elitism on the fact that my husband works for them. 🙂
If your spouse is not the easiest person to keep tabs on, this app is a lifesaver. (My husband likes his flexibility and freedom; I like plans and ETAs.) So if your husband is out with some of the kids on an outing that has turned longer than expected, instead of the three “where are you?” texts you would normally send, you can just check the app. He’s happy—you’re happy!
I think it’s comforting that my husband could find me easily if the car broke down somewhere or if I twisted my ankle on a run…or some other semi-emergency.
I also have mine set up so that it pings me when Ryan leaves the office, so I always know when he’s on his way home. And if he gets stuck in traffic, it’s easy to check his progress. (Btw, if our kids were older, this app would definitely be a condition of them using a family phone.)
2. Shared Photo Streams.
About a year ago, my husband started a family photo stream with his parents and grown siblings. We show off house projects and tease about my mother-in-law’s love of sun bathing. We got the first pictures of my brother-in-law’s proposal—and my in-laws first selfie. It is so. much. fun. And since it’s just family viewing the pictures (as opposed to Instagram or Facebook), we can really be ourselves.
They just make everything more fun. And funny. And (between spouses) flirtatious. 🙂
Thanks to airplay and our Apple TV, when we’re on a family vacation, it’s easy to take turns scrolling through everyone’s photo streams. Because – the only thing better than a day at a water park is watching photos of it that night. 🙂
Added bonus: When you’re watching awesome youtube videos like “there’s an alligator in my pool” or “how to draw a robot” with your kids, you can pop them right onto the TV for better viewing.
5. The slideshow feature on Apple TV.
I love love love that the photo stream on my phone plays slideshow-style when our TV is idle. The boys get so excited seeing what we’ve done lately appear on the TV, and I feel like it’s going to help them solidify their memories (which is a big deal to me!).
So what do you guys think? How many of these are you using? What do you have to add?
This post is in honor of my mom getting her first iPhone TODAY! Go Mom!