Friday, April 2, 2010

April 2010 – The Plainfield Ericksons go Internet Candy free

This morning, I signed out of Facebook for the month, bidding my "friends" happiness, health and safety. I won't be checking in on anyone via Facebook this month. The kids and I are taking an Internet Candy break, cutting back on the junk we spend our time on and planning to live in the real world, with real world experiences this month (no more tending to fake farms, building fake houses, cooking fake food, or laughing at other peoples misfortunes on

We are going to pick up a copy of How to Be an Explorer of the World by Keri Smith, as our guidebook this month, and are following along with the Big Picture Scrapbooking class, Everyday Adventures, that starts April 15. Here is our contract:

For the month of April, we will restrict our internet usage to educational, informational, and goal oriented usage.

1. No social networking sites may be accessed during this time. The following will also be blacked out: YouTube, any humor site (ie. Lolcats, cheezburger, Engrish, failblog, etc).
2. Blogs may be updated, provided there is no web surfing.
3. E-mail may be checked. Links may not be followed if they conflict with this agreement.
4. The internet may be used for school projects/assignments, to look up information or answers to questions we have, find addresses/maps, phone numbers, and order food or review menus (ie. Thursday’s Papa John’s).
5. There will be no access to the computer in the mornings before school and no DS. You may watch TV provided that the dog goes out, the cats are fed, and the animals have water. All humans should be prepared to leave at 7:35am, teeth brushed, hair brushed, all notes, permission slips, assignment note books signed prior to leaving the house. This will continue beyond April, if Mom deems it necessary.
6. How-to usage is allowed.
7. Recipe searches are allowed.
8. You may use the internet to support a goal or personal growth endeavor. The following are examples: mom’s scrapbooking goals, cat training, sewing instruction, or learning a new hobby.
9. There will be no complaining about this. The objective is to be present together as a family and not rely on the internet for socialization and amusement.
a. As a family, on Sunday evening, we will watch a movie together.
b. As a family, we will spend Monday nights doing something family oriented together. This may be playing cards or another game, taking a walk, painting or doing art, play Wii, visit with friends or something else we all agree to.
c. As a family, when Tuesdays are by Mom’s, we may watch American Idol together or read, or visit with family.
d. Wednesdays will be a free choice day. After homework and chores, you may choose your own activity, as long as it is not Internet Candy. If Mom tells you we have somewhere to go, we need to go.
e. Thursdays are by Dad when he is in town. If Thursdays are by mom, it is pizza night and a family game time (Wii or Playstation included) or time to read, draw, play outside, or clean a room.
f. Fridays, Mom will let you know what the plan is, which may be from any of the above.
g. Saturdays are karate, TV catch up on DVR, and whatever else is planned. The rest of the day is free choice, depending on where you are and provided you do not use Internet Candy.
10. The final word on whether or not the Internet is being used properly will be with MOM and Mom only.
11. During this time, DS usage will be allowed as long as it doesn’t interfere with family activities. In addition, if there are arguments regarding games or DS usage, Mom reserves the right to pull the plug on DS game play on any day other than Wednesday free choice, Friday or Saturday.

By signing this you agree to follow the family rules set forth to the very best of your ability and agree to be pleasant to each other during this month.

This is not a punishment, but rather a renewal of our family commitments. We will survive.


  1. You are brave and I applaud you and the rest of the Erickson's. I think this is a fantastic idea. I actually have been far removed from Facebook - and you know what, it feels really really good. I wish you all the absolute BEST of luck! Can we join you on some of the adventures???? PLEASE??!?!???

  2. GREAT ideas!!! I applaud you for taking a stand! Enjoy your family and let us know how it is going. You may have just started something...big!!

  3. WOW!! Looking forward to how this turns out!! I do agree that more families need to have family time. I still say there's nothing wrong with the roast beef dinners we had every Sunday at 2 p.m. when I was growing up. Best of luck to you!!

  4. CE - congrats, you brave soul! I wish you and the family luck is this great endeavor.