Monday, October 22, 2007

Moms and Grandmas Have Changed

Last night, while chatting with a friend, I thought how much times have changed. Moms and Grandmas used to talk about the latest quilt design or recipes, and now we (that's right, I am both of them)are keeping up with the Internet, software, graphics, enewsletters, etc. My friend and I talk recipes, family, etc., but when we get going on software and newsletters and electronic gadgets like PDAs, AlphaSmarts, software for DVDs and various downloads, we really get busy. Last night, she was coaching me on how to get my 3000 AlphaSmart, which I use quite a bit when parked in waiting rooms, to use the Get program. This Get It program copies what is on the PC and transfers it to the AlphaSmart. (AlphaSmart 3000 is an older model as there are Neos and Danas, but I like the ease of packing this thing in a tote bag.) As it turns out, after much back and forth, there is no way my "Y" cable is going to work for a download/clip and paste.

Oh, well. We both have XPs, dreading the changeover to Vista, and wondering how much software we'll have to buy to keep up. She's run several print and online newsletters and we both do graphics and I was telling her about a new freebie, Print.Net for graphics, which is actually pretty neat, tho we both have several graphic programs. She's clinging to WordPerfect, but I have to move on and we both just wish they would have left it in the Dos or WP7 version, very plain.

So we chat a bit about recipes/gardening, etc., but we always come back to techno stuff and how-tos. She has a Windows CE, while I just have a plain PDA. It seems neither one of us can manage schedules, addresses and phone numbers without our gizmos. She likes to write on her AlphaSmart while her husband drives.

Last night I brought my laptop up to speed; it hasn't been used for a while and needed updating for a new graphics program. That took a few hours and then the AlphaSmart fiasco.

Then I think about my mother's life and my grandmother's, and how they talked with their friends about cooking, canning, sewing, and quilt making. (My mother crocheted.)

Times have really changed. We are close to family and friends and peers on the Internet, rather than gathering around a quilting rack. And I wonder about the coffees and visiting in each other's houses, too. Part of Desperate Housewives appeal may be that they are in each other's lives so much, while actually today's woman may not visit, or know her neighbor. Today's online communities and chats, etc., allow for networking and are sometimes a substitution for real live communication over a morning cup of coffee.

Families around the nightly dinner table is a scenario that doesn't occur very often in our busy lives, but I do wish more families would take time to do that. With text messaging, etc., it's not unusual to see family members not communicating...with each other.

My friend and I live miles apart, rarely see each other, but do keep in touch. Especially when one of us needs an electronic fix, like the "Y" cable fiasco last night.

Nope, we're not gathered around the quilting rack any more. And there's no going back.


Cynthya said...

I agree--my 92 year old grandmother loves to surf the web and shop online. :)

C. Y. said...

My mom and dad are only 50 something but they uses the internet alot to get their world news, sport statistic and to stay connected with us kids and other relatives who live all over the world! So much more convenient and close as compared to my grandparents time when they use to depend on letters and phone calls and trip backs to the hometown to see each other!