I meant to put this up a few days ago, but 3yo CE, aka The Helpful Toddler, has apparently been pulling out all the stops these last few days… It’s an, um, adventure.
In my description, I mention that modern innovation doesn’t always improve our lives. I want to clarify that I am not anti-innovation. Rather, we need a little more contemplative reflection on whether the shiny new gadgets we bring into our lives enrich or distract from those lives.
Keep in mind, I’m sitting here writing this on my smartphone. Whaaat? A stay-at-home mom on a smarty pants phone?? What does she need that for?! Is there a diaper changing app? …Yeah, I’d like to see the average business person get through one whole day with no one to talk to but a toddler and an infant. Augh! Rabbit trail!
Ahem, innovation. I love my smartphone. It allows me to stay connected with like-minded people. In essence, it allows me to stay sane in the face of tiny little dictators for 24/7 companions. It gives me an outlet to vent about my toddler’s escapades–to laugh when what I really want to do is deposit her on a street corner with a sign that reads, “free helpful Toddler: will smash dishes, destroy heirlooms, and cause general disorder in exchange for snacks and nap-free afternoons.”
It also makes it possible to have a chance now and again to nab a red hot item on freecycle (those suckers go fast!)
At the same time, it distracts me a little too much from time to time. I want to catch up with the news instead of going to bed. Or maybe my first thought when I hear the baby crying is, “maybe she’ll go back to sleep while I’m finishing this (hopefully) witty comment.” And sometimes I catch myself wanting to read Facebook instead making eye contact with 6mo TG when she’s nursing and grabbing my face.
I could certainly do with more awareness of the distractions.
Capitalizing on the advantages and minimizing the distractions is tricky, but not impossible. For example, I use my standing mixer with dough hook to mix and knead my deliciously old-fashioned sourdough bread (oh, is that why there’s a kitchen picture attached to this post?!).
I still have to plan way ahead. I still need to shape the dough with my hands at all the right times. But letting the machine do the initial labor allows me time to get the rest of the kitchen clean in the meantime, so that I can spend more time on my girls. As does using the dishwasher or the clothes washer. There is still plenty of old-fashioned work to be done by hand, what with a house and yard (and now garden, hurray!) to maintain, cooking, and two little girls to train up and love on. And the knitting. Aaaaahhhhhhh, the knitting.
Well, so, now that’s cleared up, it’s time to put down the phone.