Screen Free Spring Break - 03/12/14

      I know 75% of you have a smartphone.  That's what they told us in a consulting seminar I sat in on today.  I know the majority of you watch TV while also surfing your smartphone.  Did you know there's a name for people like you?  They taught us today that you're called "two screeners."  They even taught us about "four screeners."  Talk about ambidextrous--- these folks can watch tv, text on their smartphone, work on their laptop and surf Facebook on their tablet simultaneously. 
      I know we can't put the genie back in the bottle, but my family WILL for 9 straight days for Spring Break.  We're disconnecting to reconnect... with each other. No smartphones, no TV, no Ipads.  We're going to play with each other instead of our devices.  What a concept.
      In our house, we do this many weekends anyway and our kids are screen free most days during the school week while at home.  We're screen free at the lake during the summer (mostly because there is no wifi or TV.. heaven on Earth.)  
     Last weekend we were screen free and oh the joy that swept over us all.  The kids went outside, built a fort with blankets over the swingset, then made arrows out of sticks for a bow and arrow, they found rocks for the slingshot and kept an eye out for the bad guys.  Oh, the days of old.  They had a look of sheer satisfaction on their faces as they fell asleep having used up a nice dose of kid creativity that afternoon.  It is truly satisfying.
       Screen free is healthy.  Our screens are helpful, vital to our jobs and vital to education in many cases.  However, these screens have their place and sometimes we just need to remember to put them back there.

 

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Last Update on October 24, 2014 09:09 GMT

COIN TOSS-MAYOR

LIMA, Peru (AP) -- Usually, one flips a coin to determine things like who gets the ball first in a football game or who gets first dibs at the last slice of pie or something. But to settle an election? That's what happened in a small town high in the Peruvian Andes. Two candidates tied at the ballot box -- with each getting 236 votes in the municipal election. Peru's electoral law allows tie races to be decided by a coin toss. So the coin was tossed. And the winner -- Wilber Medina. His rival says he's cool with the results. It isn't known whether heads or tails carried the day -- and the election.

PUMPKINS-PIGS

SOMERSWORTH, N.H. (AP) -- It started as a potential case of pilfered pumpkins. But it turned out to be a windfall for a group of pigs. Foster's Daily Democrat in Somersworth, New Hampshire reports hundreds of pumpkins were reported stolen earlier week. The gourds had been set aside behind a school to be sold this weekend at a craft fair. The investigation didn't get far. Turns out a farmer spotted the pumpkins and asked a school worker if he could take them to feed his pigs. The school employee didn't know the pumpkins were being saved -- and the farmer took them. Police say the only ones that turned out happy in the whole episode -- are the hogs.

FIREWORKS-FUNERAL

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) -- When the fireworks burst in the air tomorrow night over Springfield, Missouri -- it won't be the Fourth of July -- but the last of James Carver. A Missouri funeral director will be bidding farewell to his dad -- by having his cremated remains mixed with fireworks -- and launched into the sky. Carver's father is the first to try the program by Greenlawn Funeral Homes. His son Jim is the funeral director -- and says the eight-minute fireworks display will be followed by a cookout and memorial celebration.

 
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