Tech Tips for Retirees

For retirees interested in learning more, making life easier and staying connected with distant friends and family.


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Keeping in Touch with Young Grandchildren

Mini fun copyIt’s been a while since the last post, due to the extremely important business of making a trip to see my youngest grandchild. She now has the rapidly expanding vocabulary and grand scale emotions of the two-year-old she has just become…a wonder and a joy to behold. So, of course, it was with great sadness that I left her, thinking of all the changes she will have made by the next time we meet, in July, and wondering if she will remember anything of our last few days. With that in mind, I began to think of ways to make use of all the communication tools we now have available, to keep in touch.

First, I did some internet searching to find fun things to entertain a child of 2. There are any number of songs, stories, coloring pages and poems to forward.

Second, I made a video using my tablet. Reverse the camera toward yourself and observe the angle and lighting. (I have terrified the poor child on Skype when I don’t pay attention to those things.)

Lastly I addressed an e-mail to her mother with the video attached, and told them that I was also sending a video “gift”. If you have chosen a You Tube story video, as I did for my first message, you could send directly from there using the sideways V icon in the top right corner of the video. For coloring pages or poems, copy them and send as an attachment. You might even wish to read a chosen poem in your video, next time.

I’m guessing that there may be a way to attach both your selfie video, and your “gift” in one message, but I have not yet made that discovery. Please post a comment if you can help us out or have other ideas.


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Rainy Day Fun with the Grandchildren

Many months ago I discovered Google Images as a wonderful resource for crafters and ran across paper dolls, such as the wonderful retro ones above. But I have since found that there are a wealth of paper toys available on-line: air planes, pinwheels, origami, paper figures to assemble and almost anything you can dream up. (I guess it’s true…there really is very little new under the sun.)

When confronted with a rainy day you can print up a few activities of your own choosing, or, especially with an older child, show them a search of “paper toys” in Google Images. (Go to Google, click on the word “images” on the Google page, then enter your search in the box.) I like this method as it essentially provides a visual links page. If you click on the image you are interested in, it will take you to the site it came from, which often has even more fun ideas. Your grandchildren will soon be thinking of their own searches and you’ll soon be off-line having some good old-fashioned rainy day fun.