We took a trip to San Diego last weekend to celebrate my daughter’s birthday. The iPad 2 was an incredible addition to the family vacation in two ways:
1. Stella passed a few hours of the car ride watching episodes of Yo Gabba Gabba that I downloaded before the trip. The Targus case wedged perfectly in between the driver and passenger seats to give her a prime viewing angle. (“…She’s pink and happy!”)
2. We included family when Stella took her first few bites of cake! I had to use my iPhone for FaceTime instead of the iPad because the hotel wi-fi connection wasn’t working well (and neither was tethering). Other than having a slightly smaller screen on our end, it worked out OK to swap the devices and record using the iPad. Stella was more interested in cake than her audience anyway, but the grandparents were happy to help celebrate another one of her “firsts.” (So were we!)
I created a digital baby book using snippets of media from Stella’s first year, most of which I captured with my iPhone 4. Collecting footage originated as an organic process because of its technological ease; simply because I *could* transition from swaddling to recording, I *did*. Including my long distance friends and family also required little effort, other than a few swipes of my finger, as opposed to a few hours at my computer to edit and publish footage. In mere moments, I could transport their eyes into mine, allow them to experience the way I saw the world (at least the portions I chose to share), and then safely return them back to their own homes, miles away from mine.
The presence of technology in my daughter’s life is never the main attraction, but rather a stepping stone—a silent partner—to discover, relive, and enrich hand-made joy. To me, the memories captured are as magical as the process itself.