Thursday, January 26, 2012

Overcoming my iPhone Addiction with a Fun Indoor Game

Keeping the Kids Busy Indoors and Overcoming my iPhone Addiction at the Same Time!
Recently I made a shameful discovery….I had become an addict…an iPhone addict.  I was loaded up with apps like Facebook, emails, etc so my phone was constantly dinging and buzzing.  While I was at home with my two toddlers, I found that I couldn’t help myself.  I always jumped for the unlock button every time an email came through.  I was often scrolling for Facebook updates from people I didn’t care about and hadn’t seen in 10 years.  Why did I suddenly care more about emails and updates from strangers than playing with my own kids?  I decided I needed a serious intervention.
At first it was hard.  Every time I heard a ding or buzz from the kitchen drawer, my hands itched to check it.  However, I slowly learned to live without my phone and I found that I was truly paying attention to what they were saying and doing.   Best of all, I went back to truly playing with the kids because I knew up front I wouldn’t allow myself to be interrupted by email dings.  

I thought back to games I played as a kid and I started getting creative.  Now one of the kids’ favorite games is something that I played when I was growing up, with slight modification.  I bought a couple small buckets and a bunch of fluffy multi-colored balls from the local craft store.  The game is sort of like an Easter Egg Hunt.  They have to go sit down and close their eyes in the living room while I “hide the blueberries”.  I put them everywhere: on the fireplace, on couches, in corners of the room.  I hide dozens of them and when I’m done I tell them they can open their eyes because it’s time to pick all the blueberries.  They scurry around the room with buckets in hand, looking for all the “blueberries”.  They shriek with excitement every time they find one to put in the bucket.  When they’re done, they beg me to hide them again.

It’s a great game because they learn patience while I hide everything, then they get exercise as they scurry all around the room.  It boosts their self-esteem when I praise them for being so smart to find everything.

Finding ways to boost self-esteem is very important to me and I certainly wasn’t getting it done while I was addicted to my phone, so I would call my intervention a huge success.  Now I constantly look for new games to play with them and I find that they even come up with their own games from time to time.  That can be the most rewarding of all, to watch my kids get creative on their own and I’m proud to say that I don’t passively watch their creativity while tapping my phone.  I actively watch and encourage their creativity and it’s far more interesting.

I will admit that we don't spend every SECOND of every day looking for fun things to do.  Mommy needs some free time occasionally too!
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19 comments:

  1. I will definitely be stealing that game idea when my kids are that age. What a great idea!!

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  2. You sound like I was!! I recently decided to get rid of my cell phone completely!! eeek!

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  3. Visiting from Thoughtfull Thursday Blog Hop.

    Great Blog,

    Started Following

    Renee
    http://renesnoopy.blogspot.com/

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  4. It sucks I am the same exact way. I am addicted to my Iphone and laptop and I need to stop. Now my daughter is getting cracked out on the Ipad. I do however get out and do activities with my toddler everyday, so I can chill a couple of hours a day with my electronics :0)

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  5. I am sooo addicted to my phone. That sounds like a fun game. Maybe I can get my husband to hide things around the house for me to find...like money!

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  6. I've got bags of those pom poms- now I have another use for them- Thanks!

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  7. A great idea - I admire you for finding the time to just do something for your kids for the fun of it.

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  8. What a fun idea. I feel your pain. One thing I do to walk away from the iPhone and the computer is give my daughter the iPhone with a preschool age game on it for her to play and force myself to either sit down somewhere and have some mommy reading time while she plays on my phone or work on much neglected tasks around the house. Like the never ending pile of laundry...ahem...

    Blessings,
    ~Rosann

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  9. ill admit it too . im addicted to my iphone as well. im always checking it even if nothing has changed. I also noticed this flaw and realized that my house and kids was being chaos and i have tried limiting my usage. New Friends Weekend Blog Hop would love the follow back http://blessedchick-trythis.blogspot.com

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  10. It is fun to be a kid with the kids sometime just have fun. Following via FNFW blog hop. Following on GFC.

    http://itstimetoreadmamaw.blogspot.com/
    http://itsabouttimemamaw.blogspot.com/

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  11. How fun! This would be a great activity to do after reading Blueberries for Sal!

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  12. That's fun.. Who says you can only have hunts for easter. We've taken foam alphabet letters and hid them all over the house for a alphabet hunt too.

    -Veronica

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  13. What a great and fun activity for the kiddos!!! Thanks so much for sharing this with us at Sharing Saturday.

    ~MiaB
    www.mamamiasheart2heart.com

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  14. Thank you for your honesty. I can definitely relate to this story. I must confess that I was addicted to the alerts from Facebook on my, wait for it......Blackberry. Does anyone use a blackberry anymore? Anyways, time w/the kids and fam is much more valuable and your girls will never forget the creative hunt for blueberries when they're older and hanging out with you reminiscing, "Remember when Mom used to hide blueberries for us to pick?"

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  15. My 2 year old is in love with her pom pom sensory bin. This would be a great addition to play with her. Thank you for sharing it and linking up over at Touch of Home Learning and Fun with Friends. We will be playing again next week with our Groundhog Week theme.

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  16. Love your blog! I'm here from the SUnday Blog Hop, and the first 3 posts I've seen of yours, describe me to a tee! Addicted to Coke (altough Diet, not cuz of my diet, but the taste) addicted to my iPhone and am sleep deprived! I'll definitely be back my friend!
    Kim
    http://www.mytwintasticlife.com/

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  17. Eek, you've just described my addiction to my iPad. I don't have a cool smartphone, probably a good thing. Looks like a fun game for a distraction from all these electronics.

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