When my kids asked me not to post their photos

I blog, clearly. I am also on InstagramFacebook and even on Twitter. I post photos almost daily. I share on some form of social media almost daily. Two years ago I wrote a post about not sharing my kids faces and personal stories on social media. You can read that post here.

My 13 year old and soon to be 12 year old don’t have any social media accounts. Shocking, I know. A lot of their friends do however. So when my son turned 13 I asked him if he wanted an account. We talked about it. He asked me about the kind of stuff I post, so I told him. As we were talking it come up that he knows a lot of kids who’s parents have posted about them for years, pictures and stories, including personal and embarrassing stories and photos. During the conversation my son thanked me. He explained how he was so thankful to not have his life put out there for everyone else to know before he could share it himself.

In the conversation I asked him how he would feel if I did start posting photos of him on social media. He thought about it, and ended up asking me not to. And I totally respect that and my childs decision.

So when you look at my photos and wondering why my kids aren’t in them, why their backs are turned or I full on cropped their heads out of the photos, you know why. Its a fine balance trying to share my stories, my life, my motherhood journey without actually sharing information and pictures of them. But out of respect for them and their wishes, I will continue to crop their heads out of pictures. At least just the pictures I post online. Not to worry I have plenty (thousands and thousands) of pictures of them. In realty I am basically my kids own personal paparazzi.

Like this photo: 

I really wish I could show the world how incredibly happy she was. The giant smile on her face as she jumped and splashed us all. But the picture I’m showing you, I had to crop out her head. But trust me when I say her smile was radiant and she was having a blast.

Until the day my kids decide to share their own photos and stories, I will crop their heads out or take double the amount of photos trying to stage them so you can’t see their faces.

~ Michelle


Technology vs Responsibility

I get it. Technology is pretty much everything right now. Everything is paperless. Most people carry around a smart phone with a calendar on it. My husband prefers his phone calendar. Me? I love my day-timer and my wall calendar. I love post-its and paper and sharpies and all that. My husband and I for the most part have managed to co-exist with our different ways, very few appointments have been missed.

But thats not really what I want to talk about today. It’s that EVERYTHING is going paperless lately; bills, letters, and now at my children’s school. And I HATE it.

There is no longer any responsibility put on kids to make sure they bring home important notes and paper work. Everything is on the school website or emailed to us. I hate it. I remember both dreading and loving when I got to bring home stuff. I was proud when I remembered something and didn’t lose anything. My kids? They don’t bring anything home now so they don’t get to experience that and learn.

And now my kids school has started an online thing were you have to email when your kid is sick. So no more talking to an actual human. No interaction whatsoever. Yes I am sure this cuts down on the phone calls the school gets during flu season, but still. Maybe it is the stay at home mom in me, but a little human interaction with an adult would be nice.

On top of that, they also started a program online so when you need to send money to school, again the kid is taken out the equation and no responsibility at all is placed on the child, the parent simply pays online. We can’t even send $1 into school with our child for popcorn day.

My children can also do their homework online and send it to their teacher. Again, no responsibility to make sure they bring home the homework, do the homework and then remember it in the morning! No extra responsibility at all.

Yes I see the upside, my kids will never lose an important paper, they won’t forget their homework at school, they won’t forget their homework at home, they won’t lose a field trip form and miss out on it, they won’t take money to school and risk the chance of losing that if they aren’t careful.

But I also see the downside, my kids will never learn simple responsibly because they will never lose an important paper – it will just get emailed to me, they won’t forget their homework at school because its online, they won’t get marks taken off their homework because they left it at home in their morning rush, they won’t miss out on a field trip because they won’t have to bring home the form, and as long as I pay online they won’t have the responsibility to cary around a couple dollars for pizza day which they may or may not lose if they had kept the money in their pocket and went running around playing at school.

Its all part of technology and our world it seems. So many things rely on the internet. I’m not against it, I don’t think machines will rise up one day and kill us all (SkyNet). But I don’t agree with technology taking away responsibility from my kids. Simple things that for a child are big things. Simple things that lead to bigger things.

~ Michelle

Hi-tech tablet strollers, When is enough enough?

Please tell me this is a joke? I came across this article online Hi-tech tablet strollers rolled out at Edmonton mall

Here is a screen shot of their article showing the product they are talking about.

Screen Shot 2015-03-25 at 1.03.02 PM

Screen shot of the article by http://technology.canoe.ca

My first thought was that this had to be a joke. This is such a stupid idea. I’m sorry, but it is.

I have 3 kids. My 2 boys are 13 months apart. I fully know the challenges of taking small children to the mall with me. I remember the days very well of meltdowns, tantrums, and outings cut short. I also remember fun days out. Fun days walking around the mall, shopping, and eating out. I remember them looking around and asking countless questions about everything they saw. Question after question. No tablet can replace the learning that can take place while out, yes learning even out at the mall.

Do we not have enough screens around our children? DVD players in the car, Flat screens in the food courts of the mall, TV screens in waiting rooms, TV screens in the dentist office and on and on…
I really have to wonder sometimes if parents don’t remember what it was like growing up. We didn’t have anything like that. My family of 5 would drive to Florida and back (2 days trip each way) with no screens or DVD players and guess what? We survived. My doctor’s office when I was a child never had a tv, and guess what, I survived. I had braces in grade 6, my dentist did not have any TVs around at all, and I survived.

Now, back to the article.

I hate this idea. I think it is stupid. I think it is a waste of money.

I understand the appeal, I will be honest. Being a mom is hard. And sometimes it can be hard to get out of the house, especially on your own. I understand that sometimes you just want to go out and have a minute to breathe.
However I don’t think the answer is to put your child in a stroller with a tablet in their face.

Outings should be fun. Outings can be a great chance to make memories. Yes, even outings to the mall. They can also be great learning opportunities, and not by staring at a screen, by asking questions and observing the world around them.

Just because it is easy to do, doesn’t mean we should. Easy isn’t always best.

~ Michelle