Wednesday, October 30, 2013

7 years old

Emily weighs in at 54 lbs. and measures 50" tall on her 7th birthday.  She loves school and continues to excel.  This year she has become more acutely aware of her intelligence and talent.  We are working on being more humble about it and not being braggy.

More and more often her quick wits and cunning outsmart us.  As an alternative to continually replacing broken CD players (both kids like falling asleep to music), I decided to wipe out my old iPhone 3GS as much as I could and give it to her to use at night as an iPod with the kids' CD's on iTunes.  I also left the Weather Channel app, Calendar App and Pandora.  We quickly learned the true irresistible nature of a screen, and there were many late nights followed by an expected crash every 3-4 days. 

Then I started discovering things in Pandora that were disturbing, like some of the songs that came up under "Children's Radio" and the comments Emily had started leaving on certain songs (none of which were actually public).  We entered a cycle that went something like this: we'd talk about things, lay out some new ground rules, she'd poke around and find something else, I would discover it, repeat.  For the most part, it was just innocent curiosity and not devious or intentional disobedience.  I tried activating every restriction and parental control I could find, but it still wasn't enough.

One perk of the iPod experiment was have extremely powerful leverage to use against Emily when it came to consequences for behavior or attitudes.  However, it seemed (and kind of was) unfair when I had to take it away for a week or so because my iPhone screen broke, and I needed a phone to use while waiting for it to be fixed.  (It was right before my trip to Washington, D.C.) 

After getting it back, Emily became more sneaky by re-activating settings I had turned off.  She even sent some actual texts via iMessage over Wi-Fi.  Thankfully, they were only to immediate family members.  This, of course, resulted in getting the iPod taken away for a week.

**Update** Sometime in November, the phone stopped taking a charge and died altogether.  After a week or so of lamenting, it was pretty much forgotten.  We'll just chalk it up to a learning experience!

Emily loved the new "sporty" outfit she got from Grandpa & Grandma Lorenzen!  She chose to go to McDonald's for supper on her birthday.  Below are some October school projects.

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