Wednesday, September 28, 2011

BLING... It's For You

Two weeks ago, Princess finally broke Ace down; we got her a cell phone. Plus, we upgraded our current texting plan, too (we're grandfathered into the "unlimited data plan" as long s we stay with Verizon; which is great 'cuz I FB & email during breaks at work). The day we went to get Princess' & my passports renewed, Ace joined us. He ran a couple errands (new additions to our Halloween decor... lol), then asked us to join him at the Verizon store nearby.

He had been there about 30 minutes already and had chosen two cheap(er) slide phones for her to choose from. They were almost the same as far as features go (& both had a $50 rebate), but one was black & one was blue. She chose the blue one. We wanted: unlimited text, shared M2M, music, pics, and no data. Geoff (the store manager) upgraded our plan, and when all was said & done, ended up saving us $10/month (actually, probably more, since we get a discount on monthly service due to Ace's work). Her music & pics have to be down/uploaded to/from a computer (no data means no data transfer; including photos from phone to phone).

Then it was time to choose her number... which, for some reason, took three tries and another 45 minutes to go through (I thought computers were supposed to make our lives "easier"? Nope.). Since it took so long, Geoff gave us a free case (hot pink), and a free 2G memory card. He was *going* to throw in a free set of earbuds, but they didn't have any that fit her phone in stock (I just got her an adapter from The Shack for her current Sony pair). As we left, Geoff said to her, "You be good with that, ok? Don't disappoint your parents!" She said, "I won't! Thanks!"

On our way home, she took my phone & started loading numbers into it... Then, the texting started. Our rules currently are: (1) It gets turned on in the morning when she gets up, turned off when she gets to school, turned on when she gets out of school, and turned off again at (or around) 8pm every night, (2) No excessive texting, (3) Calls must be made to/from the house phone if calling is necessary; with unlimited texting, calling is RARELY necessary, (4) She pays $5/m toward the cost of her phone's service, (5) We pay for her insurance, but she must pay any replacement cost, (6) I read ALL texts before she can delete them, and (7) The phone gets charged every night.

Mainly, we had two reasons for getting her a phone. {A} Babysitting. She's been babysitting for one year (got her Babysitting Certification last November) and & parent-helper since she was little. A lot of people these days don't have home phones, so it was necessary to invest in her "business" by getting her a phone... and {B} Safety. We don't believe *having* the phone protects her, but we do believe that she can explore her independence a little easier now that she has the ability to easily check in (& we can track her if something *does* go wrong).

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