To start, our internet was slowed during the week... argh! This is mostly due to two of my dear children who have become obsessed with compact technical devices called laptops.
We bought these so called 'educational' devices the year before last because they were essential to their classroom learning. Added to this was the cry from schools across the state that our government hadn't come good on promises of providing enough resources for the schools to provide these items in-house. So being the good parents we are, we jumped on board and purchased a specifically built, educational laptop for each of our children.
However, in this house, slowly these instruments are being used more and more for entertainment rather than learning. This month is the second time our 200GB of data has been pushed to the limit. Now 200GB is an enormous amount of data but it gets chewed up very quickly when people are watching an endless stream of You-Tube clips and playing online games.
Gradually, I noticed they started to withdraw from the family, into their bedrooms more and more. Even when friends or relatives came over, they had to be asked to come out and say hello and within the hour they would crawl back to the lure of the screen. Finally, this little black duck said enough is enough and banned lap top use for entertainment purposes (yes, there were tears and protests lol).
I came to the realisation that the kids were becoming addicted to the computer screen and could not regulate their usage. Despite rules being put in place, the rules were bent to accommodate what they wanted to do. The reading of books stopped, communication reduced and they seemed to no longer be able to entertain themselves without a laptop. What happened to reading a good book, indulging in a craft or hobby, writing, playing outside, creating in the kitchen, playing a board game or just chatting about your day?
The good news is that now the option of spending endless hours surfing online has been removed, the board games and puzzles have remerged, they are back sharing the central parts of the house, and general discussion has recommenced. In my opinion, its a healthier way to live.
Its seems I'm not alone in these concerns. When I've shared these thoughts with other parents, they too have experienced their kids abusing their internet (sometimes with costly repercussions) and have concerns with the amount of time their kids are spending on gaming consoles, smart phones, tablets, laptops and computers.
I have to be honest, I really regret buying these laptops and even more, I regret not putting tougher regulations of their use in place. Because these devices are fairly affordable, and commonplace, we think nothing of equipping our kids with the latest resources in the name of 'education'. And of course, there is the unstated implication that we are investing in our kids future, that our kids will have a lower level of education unless we comply, and their generation is different to ours - it needs to keep up with technology, "learning is different these days". And whilst some of this might be true, let us not forget to instill our kids with simple values and the skills to enjoy life without the latest and greatest. I guess every action has its consequences good and bad. I'm sure people were feeling the same after the TV became common in family homes.
I'm not saying having this technology is a bad thing, you only have to look on the job descriptions on employment sites to know that knowing how to use a computer competently is, in most cases, essential these days. But we do need to take it more seriously. This technology is a tool for acquiring information, and needs to be treated as such.
What are your thoughts on this issue?
Anyway, enough ranting from me. Also during the last two weeks, my car had a flat battery (I turned this into a positive by cutting out pieces for a new quilt while I waited for the RACV), kids took turns at having tummy bugs, my course has been slow to start (more sewing time for me) and our search for a new house has come to a standstill.
This is my response to it all:
And thats just what I did. In my quest to reduce my scrap stash, I came up with this little number. The pattern is Bonnie Hunter's Dancing Nines and worked up a treat. That narrow dark purple border really pulls the design together.
Lots of chain piecing which is just what you need when your frustrated. I cut most of the pieces whilst I was waiting for the car repair guy to come so definitely time well spent. I can't wait to get started on the quilting!
Once this one is finished I'm going to spend some time making quilts for my kids. Quilts which are used, cuddled and loved give me the greatest joy. The ones I made previously, whilst being much loved, need to be updated with themes they are currently interested in. My oldest son has been patiently waiting years for this pirate quilt to be finished.
He took a big role in choosing the fabrics and the layout. Somewhere I even have a picture of him sewing some of the blocks. It's only been in the last couple of years of my quilt making that I have become a reasonably good at free motion quilting. It has sat in the cupboard for far too long (hence the creases!). It's time to get it finished. My son, despite being 16 now, still can't wait for it to be done.
Hope you are getting some sewing done at your place...
Until next time,