So, I Guess I Needed an iPhone Break {A Less Digital Life Postlude}

mmjiphonebreakI had just dropped off a meal at one friend’s house and was on my way to a birthday dinner for another. My bags were as full as my brain, overflowing with diapers, bib, baby food and somewhere in the bottom of my purse were my own belongings. I had grabbed my phone from the passenger seat where I had laid it after sending a text at a stoplight to ask for a high chair at the restaurant. Maybe I stuffed the phone in my purse or maybe I put it in the cup holder on the stroller, wherever I put it I did so on autopilot. Making my way into the restaurant, I balanced my friend’s birthday gift along the stroller handle and tipped the stroller up onto the curb. I hadn’t had enough foresight to look for the ramp on the other side of the entrance. Continue reading

Best Moments {A Less Digital Life…Day 31}

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I started October thinking about hypotheticals, the ingredients of my everyday dream life and how technology fit or didn’t fit the vision. I’m ending the month thinking back on actuality, all the dreamy and dull and demanding experiences that made up my days. I took on the challenge of this series right before bailing the blog, bidding farewell to the big kids and hitting the road for a reprise on the honeymoon.

There was the throwing of laundry and pushing of buttons, a quick swish-swash and a token toss in the dryer before the heathered tee and other stray pieces of clothing, ready or not, had to join the bags in the car. Sometimes you need a view from above, to see a stretch of time as a tale from history Continue reading

The Chain Reaction of Art in 3-D {A Less Digital Life…Day 30}

I think we all know the feeling–we go searching Pinterest for inspiration, maybe a new look for the mantle this season, and we end up coming across a pair of slouchy knee-high tan boots that make us want to go shopping, a must-try pumpkin bread recipe and a tutorial on how to make felted soap. There are a dozen or a hundred things we could be attempting, but we feel exhausted just trying to make a decision. When we do pick a project, we often end up copycatting what we find rather than letting our true art out into the world.

When creative work comes in bulk disconnected from its creator, when we see the results of someone’s labor without considering the labor itself, when we compare our own unadorned lives with all of the accessories on the screen, we find ourselves stuck in place like a feed that keeps recycling the same images again and again. That’s the Pinterest Effect.

Today, my friend Jessica is sharing about a whole different effect, one that helped her to stop pilfering away her moments pining over what she saw on Pinterest to find a better way of living. In my early days with baby Gracia, Jessica blessed me with a meal and good conversation. We took some time to swap stories about family and previous churches. When I mentioned the name of my good friend who leads worship at Jessica’s parents’ church, she sat up straight and told me how that very friend had taught her the true meaning of inspiration, unknowingly helping her to move from being a spectator to becoming a real artist. Here is her story…

As a tired and strung-out mom of two little ones, I recently I took a counter-intuitive leap, a step towards doing something that would require lots of time, effort, and energy…very limited commodities during this stage of life. I felt compelled to step off the sidelines and start actively and intentionally pursue my gifts. Continue reading

A Teen and a Tech Intervention…plus a giveaway! {A Less Digital Life…Day 29}

Today, I’m privileged to have writer and speaker, Marybeth Hicks share her creative ideas for guiding her teenagers in getting the most out of technology without it getting the best of them. She writes a weekly column for The Washington Times and has written three books on parenting. Her upcoming book, Teachable Moments, represented by my literary agent husband, comes out next summer and is full of encouragement for parents who want to foster deep personal connections while navigating the murky waters of the digital life. You can find Marybeth at her blog and on Twitter. See below for your chance to win a copy of Marybeth’s book, The Perfect World Inside My Minivan.

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I feel a little hypocritical writing a post about living a less digital life. I’m not exactly a role model for the low-tech movement.

I sometimes answer work emails in the bathroom.

I use an e-version of a Novena prayer book on my phone to pray the rosary. Continue reading