"Murphy was an optimist!"
Of Being Dad January 22, 2013 10:44 amPosted by Doug McCaughan in : Amy, Daily Life, Family, Of Being Dad
Nothing makes you feel so bad as making your child cry. Today I lost my temper with my sweet daughter. I brought her to tears and I escalated the incident far beyond reasonable. Ugh. None of it was reasonable. She had a bad interaction with her younger brother and my parental response was effectively to treat her the same (no worse) than she’d treated her brother while telling her not to act like me. Dad fail in a major way and the hollowness in my chest aches.
So, can it get worse? When I get to the office, I open Skype to see that just minutes before our altercation, she’d sent me a message: "I LOVE U" (the LOVE was a picture of a heart) I’m a cad.add a comment
Why does Apple make this so confusing? December 25, 2012 10:04 amPosted by Doug McCaughan in : Amy, Christmas, Daily Life, Evan, Family, Gadgets, Holiday, Of Being Dad, Technology
- Get beyond setup so the children can play on their iPods.
- Sync their iPods through a shared Macbook Air without compromising my wife’s iPhone and iPad settings.
- Allow the children to Facetime and iMessage their friends without compromising my wife’s contacts and without using her account.
We have one Macbook Air in the house. My wife syncs her iPhone with iTunes on this Macbook Air. For Christmas, the 7 year old and 10 year old received iPods. Yes, I understand DRM. Rovio Entertainment would much prefer I buy Angry Birds 3 times instead of one. I have no problem with that although I do feel like the model for DRM for music fails when compared to the physical world of records and CDs.
As best I can tell, there are four ways to manage multiple devices with iTunes.
Each of these has their respective pros and cons.
Individual User Accounts
Since each user account is its own space, that means each user has their own iTunes library and sync settings for their iOS device. Easy to understand, (relatively) easy to set up, and easy to maintain–it’s a good approach!
The problem with this approach is Apple doesn’t allow children under 13 to have an AppleID. So you are faced with lying and apparently Apple permanently associates the age first entered with the email address. Sharing of apps and music is difficult or impossible (DRM…and I’m okay with that).
Multiple iTunes Libraries
With this method, each person who uses the computer has their own iTunes library and sync settings. This way, you won’t get music, apps, or movies mixed across iTunes libraries (unless you want to) and won’t end up with someone else’s content on your iPod by mistake.
The downsides of this approach are that parental controls on content apply to all iTunes libraries (with user accounts, they’re different for each account) and that each user’s space is not as cleanly separate. Still, this is a good option that’s easy to set up.
Although promising, this approach seems burdensome and ripe for making errors since iTunes launches the last used library by default.
With this approach, you choose what content from each of the tabs in the management screen you want on your device. Other people using the computer do the same thing.
The downsides of this technique include that it only allows one setting for parental control of content and it can be imprecise (for instance, you might only want some music from an artist, but if someone else adds more of that artist’s music, it could end up on your iPod).
So, even though it’s messy, this is a very easy way to manage multiple iPods.
I believe this is how my wife has been managing multiple devices in the past. It does allow for sharing of certain apps and music but if a child starts syncing with a different iTunes library, your personal device will start prompting you for their password in addition to yours in certain circumstances. I am also not sure that this approach will allow the children to use Facetime, iCloud, and iMessage the way we want. Instead the 5GB of space on iCloud may end up being shared between all the devices while the iMessages intended only for my wife (nudge nudge) could inadvertently be seen by the children.
Downsides of this approach include that everything each person adds to the iTunes library is mixed together, the same content restrictions for all users, and the possibility that your playlist could be accidentally deleted and you’d have to re-create it.
I am afraid this will also have the problem noted above with Facetime, iCloud, and iMessage.
Apple has made this unnecessarily confusing. It’s as if Apple is adult techie centric and in no way thinking about the way a family might use their devices. For instance, the iPad does not support multiple logins or even a level of control that would allow your child to safely use the device. Cathy is constantly having to rename folders and put applications back in the correct spot because she cannot hand the iPod to the child in a locked down mode. A simple second password with attached restrictions such as "cannot view certain applications" or "cannot rename folders." With such an approach Apple could allow unlimited screen lock passwords that would allow settings for the adult, the teen, the child, or even the toddler (and yes, toddlers use iPads).
So, how do you manage multiple iDevices in your house? And with children under 13?4comments
Awesome parenting December 8, 2012 9:43 amPosted by Doug McCaughan in : Amy, Daily Life, Family, From the mouths of babes, Of Being Dad
Amy, 10 years old: "I can’t find the plastic push rod that shoves the tray through the Shinky Dink machine."
Dad: "So you’ve got an oven plugged into the wall? Here, stick this metal yardstick into it."
Spider-Evan July 22, 2012 3:30 pmPosted by Doug McCaughan in : Amy, Cathy, Daily Life, Evan, Family, Noah, Of Being Dad
Yesterday we took Evan rock climbing at The Climbing Center in Knoxville. He is a natural! Once attached to the rope, he shot up the 40 foot walls without fear. Understanding that his next handhold could be discovered by straightening a bent leg seemed intuitive to him. Noah made it up the wall twice before feigning to hunger. Cathy only had her hand sucked into the ATC (brake) once. My supple skin only lost a few layers of epidermis due to belaying. We had a blast!add a comment
Sending her to Costa Rica July 13, 2012 11:04 amPosted by Doug McCaughan in : Amy, Daily Life, Family, Travel
My ten year old girl has this wonderful opportunity to travel to Costa Rica. This is where she will be:add a comment
Evening goal – relax May 26, 2012 9:38 pmPosted by Doug McCaughan in : Amy, Cathy, Daily Life, Evan, Family, Of Being Dad
I really wanted to have a nice relaxing Saturday night to clear my head and find some extra happiness. Oh, of mice and men! Slow FTP. What could I do? Naturally, run to the steamed broccoli drive-thru. While at the local Chinese buffet, struggling to understand what the staff was trying to say, my phone buzzed with a panicked child, "The bathroom is flooding! Come right away!" I reply, "but I’m not at home." The ten year old quandaries, "where are you?" My head explodes, picturing a naive child talking on the phone, a wife unknowingly cleaning in the basement, while rivers flow through my home. All was well. The flood was bad. But our saving grace, were the tampons for they absorbed it well.add a comment
Wednesday April 26, 2012 1:49 pmPosted by Doug McCaughan in : Amy, Cathy, Daily Life, Evan, Gray, Of Being Dad, Pets, Tommy
I cannot improve upon Cathy’s Pulitzer Prize worthy post. Do read!add a comment
Of Being Dad March 10, 2012 10:32 amPosted by Doug McCaughan in : Amy, Daily Life, Family, Of Being Dad
I’m getting to spend time with my daughter working on her homework. This is extremely rewarding! My work has recently taken me away from my family and I miss the quality time with my children and wife.add a comment
Creating experiences for your child is parenting October 17, 2011 9:51 amPosted by Doug McCaughan in : Amy, Cathy, Daily Life, From the mouths of babes, Of Being Dad
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cathymccaughan Oct 16, 3:51pm via TweetDeck
Cat Stevens on the XM and 9-y-o chirps: "I remember this song from the big rally in DC. Let’s do that again." #colbert
Weekend Project – Little Miss Playhouse update September 4, 2011 1:25 pmPosted by Doug McCaughan in : Amy, Birthday, Daily Life, Family, Holiday, Of Being Dad
My daughter received a pile of building materials for her 8th birthday with my words, "I can build this in a weekend." A year and 3 months later, we are nearing completion. The plans came from Woodmanor.net.
What is left to do? This weekend is all about installing the flooring. Right now the western red cedar is drying from a sanding sealer. The quantity of debate which went into deciding on the flooring material was insane. We finally settled on 240 linear feet of western red cedar.
Cedar-Western Red Cedar: Another wood porch flooring material is cedar. It is noted for it’s beauty and durability. Colors range from mellow ambers, to reddish and sienna browns. Red cedar is naturally resistant to decay and insects due to inherent oils.
You need not treat red cedar unless it is in contact with the ground. It has less than half the swelling characteristics of other softwoods and tends to lie flat and stay straight. If maintained properly red cedar can last for many years and is ideal for porches in all exposures.
Cedar comes in four different varieties for flooring: Architect Clear for the discriminating porch floor enthusiast to Custom Knotty which is less expensive.
Next we will size and tongue and groove the planks. Then a vapor barrier will be installed followed by nailing the wood to the sub-floor. Some quarter inch molding will be installed to cover the expansion gap. The front door will be resized to accommodate the height of the flooring. The front door will be installed. The three vent windows will be built and installed. And finally the trim work will be touched up.add a comment
Saturday Building Projects for Children August 13, 2011 1:16 pmPosted by Doug McCaughan in : Amy, Daily Life, Evan, Family, Of Being Dad, Of Interest
We participate in Home Depot’s Kid’s Workshops on the first Saturday of each month.
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Kids Workshop is an award-winning program that has been offered at The Home Depot stores since 1997. The workshops are free, how-to clinics designed for children ages 5-12, available on the first Saturday of each month between 9 a.m. and noon at all The Home Depot stores. Children, accompanied by an adult, use their skills to create objects that can be used in and around their homes or communities. …
- Since 1997, 17.5 million projects have been built at Kids Workshops
- More than 1 million children built their first toolbox at The Home Depot.
- More than 845,000 birdhouses have been constructed at Kids Workshops.
- 75 children per store attend a Kids Workshop on average while many stores have 200 kids attend regularly.
Too tired? Too busy? Muster the energy and time. Read a book to your child. July 8, 2011 10:26 amPosted by Doug McCaughan in : Amy, Daily Life, Education, Evan, Family, Health, Mental, Of Being Dad
Take a moment and read this story in The New York Times. In short, a doctor tells of a 74 year old patient who couldn’t get his medicines correct.
Mr. M was a typical new patient: 74, with diabetes, hypertension and elevated cholesterol. He had some prostate enlargement and back pain. His bag of pill bottles was depressingly bulky. I spilled the bottles out at our first visit, sorting them by disease. … Mr. M didn’t remember the names of all the medicines … Mr. M was clearly still confused about his medicines…
In the end, we learn that Mr. M is illiterate, unable to read either Spanish or English. The story would be similar to many other stories of illiteracy leaving us emphatic, but emotionally disconnected, had it not been for the last paragraph.
My kindergarten-age daughter is just beginning to read, and she is taken aback with delirious joy each time a few random letters suddenly form a word that matches real life. It’s a painstaking process for her, but as I watch her I think about how this skill has powerful ramifications for her health and longevity. It’s a gift, really, one that I’d long to transfer to Mr. M if I could.
I know that joy! My son has become quite the avid reader. He no longer wants to be the listener; he wants to be the one who reads aloud. And I too wish I could give that gift to Mr. M.
Remember, they are never too old to participate in reading with you; whether you are the listener or the reader, make time to sit with your child and a book.add a comment
My war with Mother Nature May 1, 2011 10:13 amPosted by Doug McCaughan in : Amy, Daily Life, Family, House, Of Being Dad
We are nearing the end of the weekend project (ie. Amy’s birthday present from June 10th of last year). As we put on the finishing touches, carpenter bees have moved in to try to dismantle the club house. I’ve skipped earth friendly methods and gone straight to chemicals. I shall be victorious!add a comment
From the mouths of babes April 7, 2011 4:01 pmPosted by Doug McCaughan in : Amy, Daily Life, Family, From the mouths of babes, Of Being Dad
iPhone: *barrrring bringg*
Amy, 8 years old: "What’s our family’s email address?"
Me: "Um. What do you need it for?"
Amy: "I want to comment on videos on Youtube."
Me: "Uh. We need to talk…"
From the mouths of babes March 20, 2011 3:56 pmPosted by Doug McCaughan in : Amy, Daily Life, Family, From the mouths of babes
Amy: "What was that?"
Me: "I almost fell off the roof."
Amy, calmly: "Well, that wouldn’t be good. We don’t want a broken finger AND a broken leg."