Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Stayin' Alive

Hello, people. I am, unlike Heath Leger, alive. (Is that sad or what? Geez, the guy was only 28. I don't know the scoop, yet, but whatever it is, he left behind a little girl. That's just a bummer. My heart goes out to his family.)

Along those lines, I'm feeling sort of melancholic today. While I've been happier than I've been in a very long time, I can't help but notice how fast everything's moving.

Just this weekend, Pip had her nails and hair done for the first time. It was for a dress up party, and while I hesitated to let her participate due to her age, I'm glad I brought her. There was no make-up involved. Just a little glitter and a hairdo. She could have chosen a rock star or a fifties girl, but she chose to be made up as a princess. (Shocking, I know.)
While I found some of the store accessories over priced (The homage to High School Musical and Hannah Montana was enough to make me want to grow a mustache and never leave my home again) Pip's elation at her little transformation made all the candy coated pop girl music worth it.
You can look at these beauty stores (aimed at young girls) two ways: 1. We're pushing the Barbie mentality at way too young an age or
2. We're teaching them early that they are worth something. That it's not a crime to take care of themselves. As always, it's a fine line.

This brings me to the point of this post. My living, as of the late, has been thanks to the computer. I have met so many people, and had my writing exposed in a way that pre-internet days never would have been possible.

I can look up health concerns on the internet.

I can find recipes, directions, and phone numbers.

It's just... I get scared. I want my kids to know how to use a mouse, but I also want them to have the experience of holding a real one. I love that I have friends due to my blog (I really really do - thank you) but I also want to not forget the people that live next door to me. I love the fact that I can get to a new city thanks to Mapquest, but I fear my kids won't ever enjoy the experience of finding a new coffee shop on an off beaten path because they got lost.

Will no one ever get lost anymore? Will we all be so tuned in that, God forbid, we lose our internet connection, we have no way of being connected?

I'd like to think it's all about balance, but I still get wonky. Because there's no more playing out until dark. There's no more hiking in the hills for fun. There's no more walking to school and long days creating stories out of refridgerator boxes. And assuming I do give my kids a refridgerator box, is that one more day they're missing of learning something new on the computer that's going to high tail them into the next level? But what level? And what's the point, anyway, if they get to the next level but don't have their feet on level ground?

Am I making sense?

I think it's just the many hours of work lately kicking my butt. It's time for me to go walking, sweat, and get some perspective. Because right now, I've lost it.

And, to make myself a complete hypocrite, let me say that while I fear techonology taking away the finer things in life, I don't know where I'd be without it. It's really saved my sanity. Just a comment here and there from you, when I've been down but maybe not been as open as to what exactly is going on, has meant more to me than you know.

Signing off. Time to reboot my brain chip. I will write more tomorrow and check in on all of you. Miss you, love you, bla bla beeeeppppppppppppppppp.............................

More of my writing can be found on Goodhousekeeping
& Babycenter. I write under the name Andrea Frazer. Drop me a note! I’d love it! Or don’t.


JaniceNW said...

I know what you mean. Take that walk, spend some time coloring or doing playdough and check back in when you feel more balanced!


liv said...

girl, this is really one of your best. the uncertainty is so much a part of life, huh? what do we do? what happens when the computer world merges with "real life" and vice versa? so many questions for a couple of modern girls trying to raise young children.

Sandi McBride said...

Yes, it's sad about Heath Ledger...but it's good about all the ones who find out that they can stand on their own two feet without chemical help...there are thousands and thousands out there,I'm sure...so hooray for them...keep the corners of that mouth turned up and pretty soon it'll be aware that it's smiling...that smile will lift so many others...including you
Sandi at Holding Patterns

Monnik said...

Great post. It totally hits home with me, maybe for different reasons, but along the same lines. I started to cry - hard - on Saturday when I realized that I'd squandered the entire afternoon playing Bookworm Adventures online when I could have been making paper dolls with my four year old.

That was a wakeup call. My priorities need realigned. So I get you - I really do. It's one thing to mess around online while I'm at work. It's another to steal time away from my family.

amisare waswerebeen said...

I'm not a fan of makeup on the kiddos either. Pip looks divine. Glad she had fun. I know what you mean about the pull between technology and the finer things. But, oh, it sure is nice to have some quiet time while they are watching a movie or playing a video game once in a while.

Gretchen said...

I felt the same way about the Libby Lu places here...It took me a while to feel okay about Drama going for all that glitter and such. When we were done with a b'day trip there a couple of years ago, she looked like a little street walker (age 7). Yet, as we went out to lunch, she just sat so regally and felt so proud. Who am I to take that away? She felt pretty.

And re the rest of your post...Moderation, Baby. Let me know when you achieve it so I can follow your lead.

momma's heart said...

I, too, feel like I have "friends" through the Internet. It really does help when one is caring for very young children. I'm willing to bet that as they get older, we won't feel the need to check the e-mail as much, and we will have the time and energy to connect locally. Since my oldest is only a new 6, I can't be sure about this, but doesn't it make sense that it gets less tedious when they can do more for themselves?

I really appreciate you!

meno said...

Hi friend!

Maggie said...

I don't know if you find this reassuring but I get lost using Mapquest and Google maps - all the time.

balance is key. and getting off my butt and even teaching my kids about the computer...

Dapoppins said...

Go merge with nature.

It's okay. I know that I keep my kids in too much...for two reasons: I'm lazy
And also because I am afraid to let them go outside by themselves. This is not the same world I grew up in.

P.S. Send me a head shot for my next post...would you? Pweeeeese!

ms chica said...

What you're saying makes a lot sense, but I think you answered your own conundrum. Balance.

Steph said...

It's amazing how many people are having these very same feelings about balance and technology and perspective, etc. It's a stinky time of year. Let's all go on vacation and bring lots of nannies with us.

Liza's Eyeview said...

Oh you are definitely making a lot of sense! I can relate so much. The other day I was thinking - wouldn't it be nice to jsut have a USB port in my skull so that I can just download all the "mental posts" I had been doing the whole day I am "mental blogging". Haaaaayyy....

Yes, balance is the key - how can we strike the balance is the big ?

Pam said...

My take on this would be to get them that refrigerator box. It IS all about balance and the kids of today are missing out on too much of what was good "back in the day."

Susie Q said...

I know what you mean dear heart...Grace loves all the glitter and prettified girly stuff and they hit on us every time we go near a makeup counter at the mall. Nope, she ain't gonna wear that stuff yet Missy. Okay, she has some glittery lip gloss and has played with my makeup. Oh my but she had a heavy hand. Looked like poor Tammy Faye. I tried so hard NOT to laugh.

Your Pip will be just fine because she has a wonderful set of parents.
She has a fantastic Mommy.

I have missed you so...I hope your writing gigs are going really well. I have so enjoyed stopping by your posts there and love it. I am now directing friends over to see them...you have a special talent.

Poor Heath was such a talent. Did you see where the papers keep updating their obits for celebrities who are far too young to die?
We all know they do it for those who are quite ill or are aged but now they renew them daily for some very young ones...like Lindsey and Britney. That is so incredibly sad.
An acquaintance told me they have refreshed Brit's twice a day recently. Horrible that is the case. Where are HER parents? Okay, so I am rambling now...can you tell I have missed you?

Love to you all...

Evenspor said...

I know where you are coming from with the whole idea of technology taking over our lives, and it is a little sad. But if it is any comfort to you, we had computers and video games in our house growing up, and we spent a lot of time on them, but we also spent a lot of time outside and in imaginivtive play. We had time limits on both the computer and video games - 30 minutes at a time. I think this was mostly because there were five of us, and we had to take turns, but it still works. I like to use a kitchen timer for stuff like that.