ChitChat Pack 1.4: Tech in our Home

chitchat pack small bites The summer is flying by quickly. The past week has had unbelievably good weather – sunny and not too warm – perfect for reading outdoors. I’ve done quite a bit of reading this summer (love the Kindle app for my Android phone) but also am addicted to watching Periscope. (I’ll chat more about it in a minute.) We’ve got a lot of tech in our home in the form of cameras, smartphones, iPads and our computers. So it’s no surprise that our child is comfortable with different technology and software. She’s a natural behind the camera and knows how to take decent photos on our phones as well as with digital cameras. (She even videotaped a series of how-to-make-origami animals a couple of weekends ago. I need to edit them for her but other than setting up a tabletop tripod and camera for her, she did everything else – impromptu scripting, set up, etc.)

david fugazzotto photography

Isabella captured her father perfectly here when she was 4 or 5.

We monitor her use and have taught her how to use our basic equipment (cameras, laptop, mobile devices) and to respect our rules for what she can watch and which sites she may visit. Also, since my work computer is located in a shared family space, I’m conscious of what I view and read on screen now that she’s reading at a 9 or 10 year old level. I’m also careful what I post because she’s bound to Google me or her dad one day. Teen angst is bad enough without being embarrassed about something your parents wrote about you when you were younger.

Anyway, moving right along to a few of my favorite discoveries from the last few days. This has become a blog post of mini-blog posts, eh?


dog with a blog screenshotDog with a Blog

The other day, little B was feeling under the weather so I let her use my computer for a while to watch iTunes, specifically a Disney show she loves, Dog with a Blog. It’s a clever little show with a blended family and smart, charming kid actors. Sometimes the parents are corny, naive, and maybe a little clueless about what’s really going on in the mind of their teenage daughter. Just like in real life.


Podcast: Stuff Mom Never Told You

SMNTY broaches topics that my Filipino mom would NEVER in a million years talk to me about. Never. This enlightening podcast allows me to listen to those touchy subjects in the car, on headphones, in private. Brilliant! PS: Headphones are strongly recommended for those who blush easily.


clementine daily screenshot Clementine Daily’s Daily Quotes

When I need a little boost, I’ll seek out an inspirational quote or 2 or 3. I adore the daily quotes in Clementine Daily, founded by Design for Mankind‘s Erin Loechner. And who can deny the calming pull of peach and white?


Visual Supply Co’s Journal

If you love eye-catching photography, creative shoots, brilliantly designed pages, check out VSCO’s Journal. You won’t need to open an account to surf the journal’s collections. Here are a couple of my favorites. Enjoy!

common comfort izzy rael Izzy Rael: 15 year old uber blogger/photographer

Izzy’s website Common Comfort is such a gorgeous site that it’s hard to believe she’s only 15. Check out her VSCO photo collection here.

Mustafah Abdulaziz: American photographer based in Berlin.

Fantastic collection “Water”… See his latest photo collection here.


Social Media updates

Why Facebook Strong-Armed an App Developer and Crushed His Viral App

I’m unsure if I would have downloaded an app that could show who unfriended me on Facebook, but I do find it interesting that Facebook quickly dashed it into the ground. An app like “Who deleted me” would help quickly clean up friends lists much like how Twitter users can see who unfollowed them via other 3rd party apps. Perhaps Facebook will create an option in a future update? One can only hope.


screenshot periscopePeriscope Rocks!

I’m a relatively new Periscope user and I’m still figuring out the ideal time to catch up with those I follow (being across the Pond from popular US based Periscopers can be painful!). Wait, you don’t know what I’m talking about? Start off with a quick read from popular photo site, FStoppers. Even if you’re not a photographer, this article gives you a good idea what it can be used for in terms of sharing information “live” to up to 1000+ viewers and having it up for followers for 24 hours. For instance, Hubby and I were watching Neil Diamond in the UK last week live on Periscope – one of his crew was broadcasting from the arenas (it was announced on Periscope and Twitter feeds).

Here are 2 broadcasts I enjoy watching on a regular basis  (nearly daily!):
Portrait photographer Peter Hurley (he’s funny and engaging)
American expat in Rome Katie Parla She’s a historian and a foodie who broadcasts Roman sights (popular and obscure)


33 Websites That Will Make You a Genius

Bookmark this site for a rainy day or weekend project. Medium provides a wonderfully concise list of useful websites to make you smarter about practically any subject.


Music and Video

MuseRadio.org’s interview earlier this year with Michael from Marlais

marlais michael museradio Marlais’ Electronic – folk music brought MuseRadio out to Berlin earlier this year for a great interview. You can read more on the MuseRadio blog and catch the podcast here.

Cheerleader – OMI: The Filharmonic (A Cappella Cover)

I grew up in Texas with traditional Filipino parties that always had a Minus One or Karaoke sing-off. Singing contests were part of our Filipino community and to this day, there’s a sense of pride when popular rock and YouTube stars include singers with Filipino blood. Lea Salonga, apl.de.ap (Black Eyed Peas), Darren Criss (Glee), AJ Rafael (YouTube) and now The Filharmonics, who played the Filipino acapella group in Pitch Perfect 2.