Wednesday, April 27, 2011

a truth and a treat.

truth: i am a very bad commenter. most days i keep the laptop on the dining room table and get online during lunch or dinner to distract myself. but then i end up getting on the computer several other times throughout the day just because it's there. turning on some pandora for the boys-oh i'll just check facebook. avoiding making dinner-i'll just read a few quick blogs.

that behavior is a problem for several reasons. 1.)although it distracts me from the boys, it usually just makes them wild to get my attention, which just makes me mad. they tend to be in whatever room i'm in and the dining room isn't a very exciting place, so they just squabble. 2.)it majorly reduces my productivity during the day. i just can't seem to resist the siren call of the computer as i walk through the room. 3.) it's really not relaxing. the table isn't the most comfortable place and i find myself feeling rushed. hence, i don't tend to comment when i'm scanning blogs, which makes me feel guilty. i love comments and i know everyone else does to. when someone gives a helpful tip or writes something inspiring or funny, i want to and should thank them or acknowledge them. i always intend to go back later and comment, but i never do.

so i've stopped putting the computer on the dining room table-the room that i pass through a million times a day, and moved it to the family room. i only go out to the family room to chill and if i do sit down during the day and get on the laptop, the boys seem to get distracted by the toys and books that are here. but mostly, i just don't get on the computer during the day nearly as much, although i'm still working on it. although the boys can get annoying by our third shared meal of the day and i wish for the distraction of the computer, it's been really good for me to just step back and really listen to them, chat a bit, and watch my odd little chipmunks eat. then when i sit down after they're in bed, i'm actually relaxing in a big comfy chair instead of feeling rushed.

so because i've been a bad commenter, because you gals (and guys) are great, and because i have a little dollar bin addiction(worthy of it's own post), i'll be giving away five "thanks for being rad" prizes. sorry-no le creuset cookware. think stationary (another addiction) or some other random treasure i find in my craft/crap room.

leave a comment about where you keep your computer and when you like to compute/blog, or you can scold me for my rude online behavior. (mellen, because i love you, i'll accept a facebook comment, but it has to make me laugh to win you a chance.) comments will be closed next monday. peace out.


  1. Haha - no one has commented yet, I might get to be the first one!! :)

    I keep my computer on a little side table by my favorite chair in the living/dining room. I usually get on it two or three times a day (sometimes more sometimes less). I am VERY guilty of getting on to avoid doing chores or taking care of the kiddos. Originally I chose to keep my compter here in the middle of the "family" area so I could use it while I nurse the youngest and keep and eye on the older ones (as they play in this room a lot and I can see into the tv/toy room which is right through the hall).

    At the moment I am avoiding going back in to nurse the baby (seriously, over an hour nursing to sleep - and he is almost a year old?!? I do not remember having such trouble with the others - each is different I guess). And I hear a lawn mower outside which reminds me that I will be needing to mow our lawn soon as it is getting "scruffy" - welcome summer - hah.

    Ok, that about sums it up. Too bad I can't think of anything funny. Well, bananas can be funny, right? I have about 30 of them ripening on my counter right now (happened to catch them right as they put the little red-tape on them at the store to make them really cheap). We REALLY like bananas in this house. Haha, right? :)

  2. I usually keep my computer on the dog bed under the side table next to the chair in the family room. I'd keep it on the table, but it's usually full of other stuff so there's no room. Sometimes I keep it upstairs so I don't distract myself with it too much during the day. I am also bad at commenting. I rush through looking at stuff with the intention of going back to comment but rarely do.

  3. Yup, ditto to all this. :) I've been meaning to tell you that even though you can now comment on my blog (yay!) I don't want you to feel like I expect it of you ;) Though of course you know I love comments like you do and especially yours. But really, I won't hold it against you as long as you promise to call me or get together with me in real life (when the kids aren't sick or too crazy) more often so we can comment to each other face to face. :)
    Ok, so yup, again I have the same 'problem' of constantly feeling the need to check. I think my kids hear me say, "I just need to check something real quick" more than anything else in the day except for maybe "stop!" and I hope "I love you".
    You know mine is in the office that I go through to get to my kitchen. So when my computer sits there like a bowl of candy, I can't help but reach in and 'quickly check things' before attacking the dirty dishes or getting food ready for my poor starving neglected children. I also have to do this on the way back upstairs on the way to change a stinky diaper or do laundry. And then, upstairs, if Steve is not home and he left his computer on...well that's just another bigger bowl of candy that works faster and has all the pictures for me to upload. So we try and leave that one off during the day.
    Sometimes I try and challenge myself to see if I can walk through the office without brushing the mouse pad to check for any new messages. I've started just putting the top down, the computer stays on, but this would require more work to open up the laptop so it has been a mostly successful roadblock to the unnecessary 'checking' when I should be doing better things.
    Ok, so if I don't get a prize for the longest comment I'll come back and write a book on here next time I comment.
    Love you Mary.
    p.s. I laughed about what you said to Mary Ellen because once she asked me how to comment here and I explained the long and complicated process and might have scared her from even trying it. It usually takes me 3-4 times for it to work. In fact, my whole comment got erased just now but I've learned to copy my comments here before posting so haha blogger you didn't get me this time!

  4. Oh, Mary, I sure just laughed at that pic of you and your boys! I bet they love having such a fun mom :)

    Usually my laptop is at the dining room table, like you just said. For the last few days though, it's been on the couch. And yes...I am on the computer WAY longer than I'd like to admit. I know as soon as my youngest is a little older, my "free" time will become almost nonexistant!

  5. Great post!

    @Erika, I've started doing the same copy and paste thing with comments. Blogger is mean.

    If I'm using the laptop it's usually on the kitchen table. I've been trying for about the past 6 months or so to only be on the computer when the children are asleep. My success at this has been really good sometimes, and crappy other times. I am finding lately though that the less time I spend online period, the more fulfilled I feel. It feels so much better to read a book or enjoy my children. Even when they aren't behaving in a particularly enjoyable way. Does that make sense? I still enjoy the blogs and Facebook and such, but it has felt good to cut back. As with everything in life, it's striking that perfect balance. Always a process.

  6. Blog commenting. I tend to go in spurts with this. I over analyze my comments and rewrite or think way too hard about what to say, on occasion I've been known to give up and just not comment. I know everyone enjoys comments so I'm still a work in progress on this blog commenting neurosis.

    My laptop generally resides in the kitchen. It seems I spend the majority of the day in the kitchen with meal prep, cleanup, we generally are kitchen table homeschoolers. Its nice to pop on the laptop and check email, facebook, or blogs from time to time during the day. I generally blog after the kids go to bed.

    I like your silly pictures :)

  7. So I'm late to the party and everyone else has stolen my comments. Our laptop is on the built-in desk in the kitchen and the desktop computer is in the computer/craft room in the basement. Everything you and Erika said about the "siren call" of the computer and needing to "just check one thing" rings all too true for me as well. What makes mine even worse though is the laptop is located right next to a kitchen cabinet that contains both cereal and crackers, so even if the girls are asking for a snack it takes minimal effort on my part to take care of their requests. Man, I really feel like a lackluster mom typing that out :( Do I get to redeem myself at all by saying I occasionally let the girls sit on my lap when I'm on the computer, and that I'm frequently nursing Amelia while checking on that "one thing"?

    Oh, and I do the copy and paste trick quite often as well since Matt periodically doesn't sign out of his Google account and I don't like leaving comments as "Matt S." so that way if I go to sign him out my comment isn't erased and I don't have to go pout in a corner and debate if my thoughts were worth retyping or not.

  8. Elizabeth, your comment cracked me up about the comment getting erased and pouting in the corner about whether it's worth retyping or not! Ditto on the copy and paste trick here... mean blogger...

    We have a laptop that sits on the built in desk in our kitchen. It has like no programs on it, so it's super quick to turn on and get on the internet... it's really a curse... If I leave it off, I'm good, but if I turn it on first thing in the morning, then I'm doing the Erika and rewaking it ALL DAY checking for messages/notifications...

    Definitely a balancing act that I struggle with daily!

  9. Our laptop sits on the floor next to "my chair" which is next to "my office" which consists of an end table covered in "my crap"..I too, like many have the "I gotta check on something" addiction and just tonight I was about to post when Charlie climbed up on my lap, put his giant noggin in front of the screen and asked for a kiss...who could resist that?? So an hour later, I'm back and I sure enjoyed all the cute crazy glasses pics! Good for you Monica for getting closer to "that balance"'s something I REALLY need to work on...maybe you could post a blog tutorial about it..HA!

  10. My computer sits on an excessively large desk, courtesy my husband, in the corner of the living room (which, in fairness, is also excessively large, so the desk does indeed fit). I keep my computer on throughout the day so that I can keep in touch with Joe periodically through IM. Which sometimes leads to extended periods of me checking facebook while I wait for him to answer me :P I like to blog/comment during my morning coffee time since by the time Joe gets home at night I usually want to hang out with him.

  11. i typed a totally awesome comment that has since gotten lost in the sauce somehow so i will try to recap:
    during the day - the gov't pays me a rediculous amount of money to sit online all day and look at facebook, blogs and clothing/cooking websites (and assist the occasional customer). so i stay pretty tuned in.
    in the evening - excepting the occasional connection via my cell phone while sitting on the toilet (tmi?), i do not get online much. should some sort of online banking situation arise, i will go to the laptop which has taken up residence in the basement (Man Cave) and check there. charles has turned the Man Cave into the ultimate Open House Party equipped with media center, 32" flat screen wall-mounted tv, video game systems, pool table and music library. so online banking is rather interesting at my house.

  12. all very interesting. thanks for the discussion mary. when i'm on the computer and my kids are being naughty, i automatically assume responsibility. unless, of course, i've been giving them my undivided attention ALL DAY and i really need a break, for which i prep them by saying "LEAVE ME ALONE!" just kidding, sort of.

  13. I keep my laptop on the end table by the couch, but I move it around with me sometimes. I like to move it to the dining room table or island in the kitchen, especially if I'm looking up a recipe. And if Michael calls, I just carry it around with me wherever I am so I don't have to stop and drop everything. I'm actually more productive when I talk to him for some reason.

    Gianna does the same thing your boys do when I get sucked in by the computer. She always thinks daddy is in the computer, and gets irate with me when I don't "share." I usually have to make myself close the laptop and put it away for a little while. And when I do I find I'm more patient with her. For Lent I stopped turning on the tv when Gianna was awake (I was really bad about putting it on for "background noise" and then watching too much of it) and it really helped me get more done. I may have to implement a similar (but modified) rule for my computer time. I reeeeaaaalllly don't want to, but it's a necessary sacrifice. Alas, motherhood is full of them. Sigh.