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Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Disappearing Posts and Other Things - Jokes Follow

Is anyone else who uses Blogger having problems with their latest posts disappearing? Mine have been doing it for the past few days. I can usually bring it back with refresh or by reposting but where does it go in the meantime? Any ideas?

The girls' second day at school went well. Rochelle is no longer bored and the transportation problem seems to be solved. Rochelle's teacher (who knew me from Elcie's 6th grade) flagged me down when I picked up the girls and asked me what the problem was. She then commandeered the principal. I knew him from a lengthy email exchange last year about Elcie's attendance and a Vice Principal who listened to no voice but her own. Long story way back in my archives.

He got on his cell phone while I was standing there. He couldn't get a definitive answer but he's sure that if we can't get both girls on Elcie's ortho bus, he can find a bus that will transport both Rebecca and Rochelle. He agrees I shouldn't be expected to drive them when all but one is automatically eligible for transportation and they all live in the same house.

He'll call me tomorrow but I have hope. In the meantime, I keep driving. Tomorrow, I'll start out earlier so the younger girls will arrive for breakfast. It will work out eventually.

Rebecca and I were working on basic algebra and easy square roots tonight. I think they're trying to determine her strengths and weaknesses. Not a bad idea for math intervention. Maybe when I finish this post I'll google square root. I can do the simple ones in my head as can most people but I can't remember the procedure with the longer numbers. Square root of 3,719? I don't have a clue. It's been well over 50 years since I needed to know.

I said in my earlier post that I was going to ask for advice. Not about my disappearing posts; I thought of that just as I signed in and couldn't see what I'd written last. And not about square roots unlessyou math whizzes feel like chiming. I can look that up myself. My questions are about that wonderful or infernal (depending on your point of view) device, the cell phone.

I was talking yesterday or the day before about a cell phone for the two younger girls (6th grade) to share. I wonder what you think. The school isn't walking distance and there might be occasions where one or the other would need to reach me and wouldn't have access to a phone. They carry my husband's phone when they leave the immediate neighborhood now. I want them to be able to reach me (or the police, whatever) immediately. I'd feel a little more secure with that link. Times have changed greatly since I was all over my small town from dawn to dusk and this is not the safest place to live. It isn't a slum but we are inner city and we've had problems.

The school allows cell phones as long as they're turned off during classes. They may be used before and after school and during lunch.

If I decide to do it, I can think of 4 options in order of preference.

One of the new phones with 3 or 4 phone numbers programmed in.

A pre-paid cell. When the minutes are gone, they're gone until I feed it.

A carrier like Cricket with unlimited local minutes.

Add one more phone to my Verizon family plan and share 1400 minutes.

I know why the choices are in that order but I don't want to sway anyone. I could very well be wrong or there may be another option I hadn't considered. Or maybe some of you think a cell for the tweens is a terrible idea.

I'd like to know what any of you (with prior experience dealing with kids and phones or without) thinks.

Thanks and take care everyone.


3catsmeow4me said...

Haven't had trouble with Blogger but I did loose a few post on Wordpress last week. It's Annoying!

Atasha said...

I had trouble and visited their group help page and it turns out everyone else did. No one could publish a thing. It has since been fixed but I too have noticed the whole "need to refresh" deal. As a matter of fact when I clicked from bloglines to view your post, it was at the last entry and I had to refresh. Can we complain even if it's free?

Ok on to the cell phone. I am not at that point yet and still have quite a ways to go, but in that situation it would be a tie between the 1st and 2nd. And since I am not sure how that programmable one works(ie, is it an actual plan? How do the minutes work and how much is it monthly, etc) things like that, I'd opt for #2.

Mainly because I would like my kids to learn some sort of responsibility. Talk too much and no more until next month! Plus in a case of emergency, regardless of whether or not they're out of minutes, they can still call 911.

However that's bit tricky because if they're out of minutes and need to contact me then they can't. Hmm something to think about there.

Atasha said...

I decided to add my reasons as to why I don't like the others.

#3 Unlimited local calls - if that means the same price plan as long as the calls are local then no. I don't think it would teach the kids anything. I don't want them talking up a storm just because it won't cost extra. I think at that age some sort of phone control is needed and that won't allow it when I'm not around.

#4 Sharing plan is a definite no no for me. I figure since they are now at the point of learning this kind of responsibility, it would really suck for me if they fail at it even 1 time. I talk a lot on my cell and probably always will since my family isn't in my same state. Those overage charges are out of this world. What is it like $0.40 a per min? MADNESS can you imagine Ann?

Just my opinion. Ok I'm done now.

jw said...

Lots of options these days. Text messaging is big now and can cost a lot on some plans, so be sure to consider that. I found an interesting article at "Cell phones for Kids" My two kids and I share a plan with Alltel which allows assigning ten numbers that are always free (they call it "My Circle"). Oh, the GPS service that some mention is now being used by Enhanced-911 to pinpoint emergency locations.

Reject the Koolaid said...

Get the cell phone for them. Part of our prejudice against cell phones for kids is irrational.

For me, my daughter having one is just a convenience. The card costs me 10$ a month maximum and she's never exceeded the limit. If she did, she'd have to use her money to buy a new one.

Anonymous said...

I told you before about that Firefly phone. I think other carriers have the same thing, with just a different name. If you're worried about them running up minutes gabbing with friends then this would be the way to go. That's the phone that the police departments around here recommend.

No troubles with blogger here.

LoisLane said...

Not at that point here either, but I'd probably go with the Firefly one if it's just to be for emergencies.

Gawdessness said...

I too am leaning toward the firefly like phone. It just fits the bill of what I am looking for.
I want to be able to reach the and have them reach me and that is it.
It is pretty much what I use my cel phone for too.
Something I have been thinking about pretty hard over the last few weeks.

Anonymous said...

I would definitely go with something that can program limited numbers. In a rough neighborhood, you are probably also factoring in the "what if someone lifts their phone" element. In which case, no matter now responsible your girls are, why leave yourself open to charges from other people's out-of-control kids? Of course I hate that kids need this option, but I think you are wise to acknowledge/address this "advance" in society. I think if I had needed help from a roaming-the-pasture mishap, sooner or later a "Lassie-like" friend could have summoned help. Probably can't send a dog to school with them though. Sigh

Beth said...

We broke down and got the boys Verizon phones and we share minutes. I can check on the web to see how much they are moving and if you email Verizon, they will put a block on the kids' phones so that they cannot text messages or download anything.

The boys have been really good about not going over minutes, but I am pleased Evan has his own plan. Him I will trust with my home, but not my cell phone minutes!

There are two new options. One is the jitterbug phone which I think is being mostly marketed to seniors. They have inexpensive plans (with very few minutes) and easy to use phones.

Also I saw an add for Disney phones which allow you to give your kids an "allowance" in minutes that they can't go over. I would not be surprised though if Verizon starts offering that feature. can also pay Verizon extra to give you a service where you can track the kids' phones on the web...see where they (the phones) are. They will even send you a message if the phone leave a certain area. I am not doing that.

Beth said...

Oh...and once your kids have phones you can stop worrying about whether you should have bought them one and start being frustrated that they forgot to take it with them! Or left it in their coat and their coat on the bench or in the closet at their friend's house...or...

Elizabeth Green said...

I'd add the extra line on your plan--sounds like the most economical option. Good luck with the bus thing.


I don't think it's a bad thing to give a cellphone to your twins. If both of them are always together, only one cellphone for both of them. To be fair to both, a rotation can be done. The other holds it for a month and the next month the other twin. But if their activities are separate then they will both need a cellphone each.
Over here kids in 6th graders are already allowed to bring cellphones. I think at this age they're responsible enough. Just give them some limitations on use and maybe when they get home all cellphones be surrendered to you. They only have it when they leave the house.

Tammy said...

half of my blog sidebar disapeared the other day and I noticed another one of my friends mentioned that hers had too...Blogger...Oh Blogger!!!

Sue said...

Haven't noticed posts disappearing, but my sidebar did (maybe I'm the one Tammy was talking about)
As I told you yesterday, I'm truly interested in this cell phone thing for tweens and teens. Our grandson's school goes a bit further and phones may not be used at all until the end of the day.
(it's a closed campus)
I'll come back and read more comments later...

baggage said...

I keep seeing ads for the Disney phones that have the built in GPS so you can see where your kid is at all times. I like that idea, especially as Bug gets a little older.

I would probably go with that or a 3 or 4 person programmed one. Can they get incoming calls from anywhere? That is what concerns me, her giving out the cell phone number to strangers.

Granny said...

Thanks anonymous. You're not the only one to think of incoming calls and it's something I hadn't considered.

I'll see if there's some sort of block, at least for now. They're still very oung even though they don't think so.

Gina said...

I would get the pre-paid one. Not that I know much about any of them, but I would think that would be the most economical and practical. It depends on what you would like to teach them, although I did just see a commercial for those Disney phones, and they looked kind of neat.

karrie said...

I've noticed lots of Blogger weirdness but thought it was due to renovations on our site.

I would go either the prepaid or additional phone route. That way if you ever need a backup--say your main cell breaks before its time to renew--your entire family ahs an extra phone.

I think preteens with cell phones is an entirely appropriate use of technology. I remember getting pickup times for sports, etc. confused with my mom and waiting around outside an empty school since I had no way to call for a ride. (One payphone, locked inside.) The phones should not substitute for keeping close tabs but I think they are a great tool.

Andrew said...

My site has gone wonky a couple of times, but republishing the entire blog fixes it. I also have trouble uploading photos. The files get uploaded but no html appears in the post sometimes. If I copy the html from another post and change the filename, though, this works every time.
To Love, Honor and Dismay

Dawn I. said...

I have always thought that kids or teens who had cell phones were spoiled. Maybe it is just because I never had one until I was an adult. Or that even if I wanted to I could not afford one. I can see the benefits of kids having them, for your sake I guess. Jeremy is no where near an age to use or need a phone. And I think I would be more likely to give him a prepaid payphone card than a cell. But that would only be good for him to reach me. I guess I just think differently about cells than most people.

stefanierj said...

I liked the Firefly idea until I read Beth's comments--that sounds like a really good way to go. Especially if you can block incoming calls from all but certain numbers (yours, Ray's, whoever else you want to be able to call them).

But Firefly might work, too, if you could deal with the incoming call sitch.

Good luck--let us know what you decide. In all events, they should probably have one--better they learn to be responsible with it now than when they're on their own entirely and can get into big trouble fast!

L. said...

Wow -- this has been a very useful and enlightening comment thread, since I'm also thinking about getting my kids a phone.

Hi, Granny! :)

(Word verification: HARWKS. Clearing my throat?)

clairesgarden said...

rosie has a phone which one of my friends gave her about three years ago when she was 13, she has always had to use her own money to buy pre-paid cards.
I hope the bus thing works out, it would be such timesaver for the girls to travel together.

Angela said...

I don't know about the phones - but prepaid can be expensive - my friend spends twice as much as I do every month to get just about as many minutes. If you go with the Verizon plan, they'll be able to talk to you for free (which is really the point, right?)

And I've had to republish every single blogger post for about the last week. Frustrating when you're paying for airtime on the phone line out of state!! But, I think it's really there, just something wrong with the cache on the page!

Jo said...

You are nuts if you share minutes with a teenager. They are soooo unaware of how long they have been talking and oh my gosh, if something happened you could end up with a horrible bill!
I would do Cricket with a child who I had full confidence wouldn't misuse the phone.
I like the pre programmed one. I wouldn't want them calling just anyone. My two cents and worth what you paid for it deary!

The Mama said...

I would do the emergency only phone (Firefly?) or the Cricket plan. I would not do a pay ahead plan because they way over charge and if the girls use up the minutes they will be able to call 911, but not you. And I would definiately not share minutes, I just see that going south really fast! If you don't mind them on the phone to their friends and stuff then do the Cricket. If you want it for emergencies only and that's it then do the Firefly.

I hope the bus thing works out for you, that would be so nice!

mreddie said...

Hopefully your transportation woes can be worked out to your advantage. It would be tough for me to be helping with homework all over again - but I'd do what I had to do. ec

Puss-in-Boots said...

My grandkids have mobiles (cell phones) which are prepaid. If they run out before the allotted time period, they pay for the extra if they want it or go without. It's worked well, the kids have been responsible with them.

Hope the transport problem is sorted out soon, what an inconvenience for you at the moment.

Talk to you later, Ann. Hugs.

PEA said...

I think it would be a good idea for them to have a cell phone but it should be specified that it's for emergencies only and not to chat away to their friends. I prefer the prepaid cards with a certain amount of minutes on it. I think it would give you peace of mind knowing they can contact you anytime they need to!

Janice said...

Hi Ann,

Since my daughter is now in high school and on the tennis team, my husband and I are thinking maybe it's time for her to have a cell phone.

We check out some cell phones at our local wal-mart, and I liked the pre-paid phones a lot, especially since your not locked into a service with a monthly charge for two years. And some of them have free moble to moble service too. We might just get that one, and I think it's called the Go phone, it's just under fifty dollars and it has ten dollars of minutes already in it too.


Alice said...

"He agrees I shouldn't be expected to drive them when all but one is automatically eligible for transportation and they all live in the same house."

Great! Someone else understands logic. Now all we have to do is see if this revolutionary train of thought can infect those higher up on the power chain...

...Who's betting they've been immunised?

Anyway! Enough cynicism. I think the cell phone is a good idea, considering. I also think, however, that the first idea (and if not possible the second) are the only viable options for kids. Even trustworthy, reliable kids at my high school (when they became all the rage. I didn't have one till I was 16, and I paid for the vouchers myself. My mother couldn't afford it, and there were still plenty of public phones around then that worked so it wasn't really necessary) went nuts the first time they got their hands on a mobile with actual MONEY to CALL people with. A few of the afore mentioned parents had brought the phones on set contracts (as in spend now, as much as you like, pay later). They were the ones who regretted it most.

My tuppence, anyway. Glad that things are seemingly starting to sort out, and good luck with the Mathematics. I don't envy you or Rebecca one little bit.