Just recently my husband I have decided to totally confiscate the iPad away from our children. At first, we bought it as a tablet for ourselves, but with two children under the age of 5, it only took a matter of days for them to put their Nutella-dirty hands all over it and learn how to download Jake and the Neverland Pirates app while figuring out our Apple account passwords, too. Yep, they are totally 2012 kids.
And after Jake came the Doc McStuffins app, the Angry Birds games, and of course the dozens of “Make and Bake” cookies, candies, and cake apps that I’ll admit that I even wasted a few good hours on. But we had to put a stop to it. I was always that mother that said I wouldn’t buy an Xbox or allow my children to have televisions in their rooms, but it just seemed too easy to give them the iPad for a few minutes so I could get the laundry done or finally have ten minutes to myself to take my hair out of its 24-hour bun and put a little make-up on before leaving the house. The only problem is, five minutes turned into ten, ten turned into twenty, and we’ll I’m sure you catch my drift. And twenty or more minutes of screen time with the iPad automatically turns my children into mini-zombies who don’t respond to their names when called and worse, scream Bloody Mary when you take it away from them.
While technology can be a great thing, it sure bite you in the wrong places as well. Yes, my children are going to grow up and even need modern technology, but I just don’t feel comfortable with my children feeling too comfortable with an iPad in front of them. To me, the ultimate play station is the park outside, and not dancing around to a Wii game indoors.
But as any parent would know, there are advantages and disadvantages to just about everything. In a few days, our family is going on a three-week long trip through Europe and while I am incredibly excited about our vacation, I know that there will be times when I will want to – ahem – take a nap, or even worse, spend about ten minutes without having to entertain and maybe enjoy a moment or two on my own (I might be a mom, but I’m human, too). Thankfully, Dish Network has an incredible app that will allow my family (husband included) to watch their favorite television shows on our iPad at anytime, anywhere. So in between making their jelly bean and pretzel cake creations, they’ll be able to watch their favorite episodes of Team Umizoomi and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse after a long day of hitting the cobblestone streets of Rome. Sure, this does go against my principles and my love/hate relationship with the iPad, but I’m sure that there will be a moment during our three weeks together that I’ll just throw the iPad their way for a few minutes of mommy and daddy peace (meaning we get to zone out).
But that thing is so going to be taken away the moment we get home. You betcha.