We have three (soon to be four) boys. The end.
But that could easily be the end of this story if you really think about it – or if you are a fly on a wall, in our house.
In all honesty, we allow our children to have scheduled time on our wireless devices. I try to keep it to a minimum and/or really think ahead to what my day looks like and when I’ll need it the most (yes, I’ve been known to use a mobile device in certain situations to make things easier on everyone around… But really, who doesn’t these days?). The one thing I make sure of is that it’s all educational-based, even the downloaded TV shows have some meaning or educational aspect in them. But because we have introduced and allowed our children access to our iPhones and iPad, we have also experienced some heartache – it comes with the territory.
We have dropped two phones in water, cracked the screen on another and lost another for three months. I’m over the costly damages. Ultimately, it got to the point where I wasn’t allowing my kids to touch my iPhone anymore – and my husband was getting mad at me for denying them the privilege as he was still allowing it.
One of my New Year’s Resolutions for 2013 is to (continue to) instill a sense of pride in my children when it comes to being responsible and taking care of our possessions and ourselves. I’ve quickly figured out that the stereotype does hold some truth and that my boys need some additional guidance when it comes to this life lesson.
And that’s when my love fest for LifeProof began… Because that resolution alone is not exactly realistic – with a clumsy mom (like myself), a forgetful dad and four active boys.
THE LIFEPROOF IPHONE CASE
I have the iPhone 4S and it’s my lifeline because my day job requires me to be connected at a moments notice. Emails, social media connections, conference calls, scheduling, planning, to-do lists… all on my phone. It’s always near by or hanging out in my diaper bag. My kids aren’t the only ones that (used to) abuse my iPhone… I’m a huge klutz and drop it at least once a day.
I’ve tried numerous cases over the past few years, but the LifeProof iPhone case ($69.99) is the only one I’ve had that completely seals my iPhone, which protects it from the accidental drops, water, dust (usually from playground sand) and other extreme elements – we took it to the snow and the beach, in the same week, and I’m happy to report that my anxiety levels remained at a normal level both times.
I’ve never gone without a protective screen over my iPhone in the past, so getting used to the fully enclosed case (with the built-in screen protector) was a piece of cake – for me at least. While really close, it doesn’t lie directly on the screen, but I haven’t had any issues with screen sensitivity in the past few months.
After putting the LifeProof case on my phone, I still don’t allow the 3-year-old to touch my phone, but that’s only because I don’t trust him. He’s been known to access my emails and delete a handful before I read them or send jibberish messages to the CEO of a very well known company (yes, that really happened). I do, however, allow my 5-year-old and 10-year-old to use my phone on specific occasions now that it’s fully protected. I guess you can say they have formed a love for LifeProof, too.
THE LIFEPROOF NUUD IPAD CASE
The iPad is used 30 percent of the time by the kids (70 percent by my husband). We store all of our special needs 5-year-old’s education and social skills building apps on the iPad, all of the movies for our car and air travel adventures (and the times to come when we’ll be sitting in the car while I nurse a newborn) and we let all of the kids play around with drawing, typing, picture taking and movie making.
For a while we had a cover that protected it solely from drops and scratches. But seeing as we’ve been known to use the iPad to help with potty training, it became essential to have a waterproof feature as well. The LifeProof iPad Nuud case ($99.99) is all of the above – waterproof, snow proof, dirt proof and shockproof. Or as we call it – potty training proof, photo opp proof, distraction proof and ‘we have four boys’ proof.
The only suggestion I would give to parents, who are looking at the Nuud case, is to get the ZAGG invisible shield! While a huge advantage of the Nuud case is the fact that you have nothing between your fingers and the iPad’s touch screen, I don’t trust my kids around a bare screen. We added the LifeProof-approved ZAGG screen protector and it gave me that extra little piece of mind.
MOMMY-APPROVED LIFEPROOF ACCESSORIES
Aside of it being bright orange (a current fav of mine), the LifeJacket ($59.99) makes the iPad nearly impossible to misplace. It also allows it to float and provides added protection for drops and accidents. We haven’t tested it as a floatation device just yet, but I have a feeling it will come in handy this summer.
Being a mom, I don’t carry around my iPad on my arm while I work or watch shows while traveling. Nope… I strap that puppy to the car headrest, the stroller handlebar and even my neck (that was a dire emergency and a story for another time). Thanks to the Strap Accessory Pack ($34.99) – and because we have a portable wireless hotspot for our iPad – we have the ability to take it with us on road trips. The shoulder strap made it easy to adapt it to the car headrest for easy (and quiet) movie watching in the backseat. My 10-year-old son has taking a liking to the Hand Strap while making his movies and playing his building-related games. I can imagine it will come in handy for reading down the road as well.
While the Cover and Stand ($19.99) is optional, I like it for a few reasons. I think the stand is more of a guy thing. I don’t use the stand and never have, but for some reason my husband and the boys love it. The cover, on the other hand, I do utilize because it’s added protection. Enough said. It just so happens that the stand is built-in to the cover so it’s a win-win for everyone.
I don’t bike, but I do push strollers! This Bike and Mar Mount ($39.99) works on every stroller I’ve tried it with – as long as it has a single handle bar. I’ve even hooked it to the stroller bumper bar with ease to test it out. It’s nice having it front and center for phone calls and music selections while out on walk with the kids.
Disclosure: LifeProof sent us product to review and wanted us to really put them to the mommy test. My boys know how to make sure things are tested properly and that they did! All opinions are my own and I’m sharing this because most of these products have really been a sanity and anxiety saver for me… and I know a lot of kids and parents that received mobile devices for the Holidays and these cases should be known and considered. For sure.