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Last month I posted about our search for a cheap wireless plan to add a third mobile phone line to our family – due to how busy our kids were getting and that as a single-vehicle family, we are having to get creative in order to get them everywhere they need to be.
Let’s just say that in the few weeks since school has started, the kids (and therefore Ron and I) have been even busier than I ever expected – and the MyTouch phone I purchased through the #MyFamilySaves campaign with #CBias has been a wonderful way to help keep everyone on-schedule and connected.
Just last week, for example… Every evening we had multiple activities going on that often meant I had to drop someone off early or pick them up late:
- Monday was Back-to-School night for our middle-schooler from 6:30 – 8:30 pm.
- On Tuesday, Hannah had Lego League right after school until 5:30 pm, Becca had soccer practice from 5:30 – 6:30 pm, and Abbi had soccer practice from 6:30 – 8:00 pm. Thankfully a friend was able to bring Hannah from school to Becca’s practice for me.
- Wednesday afternoon brought a repeat MRI for Hannah’s knee downtown from 4:20 – 6:15 pm, then we rushed home so I could get Abbi to soccer practice from 6:30 – 8:00 pm.
- On Thursday, Abbi had a robotics/Lego League meeting that she and I needed to attend at school from 7:00 – 9:00 pm, plus I had to get Hannah to and from soccer practice from 7:00 – 8:00 pm.
- No rest on Friday – we had soccer pictures at the middle school from 5:15 pm – 6:45 pm and then Abbi managed to lock my keys in our van, so we had to hang out there even longer while waiting for roadside assistance to arrive.
- Saturday brought soccer games – Abbi’s was out-of-town at 9:00 am, while Hannah played in-town at 9:00 am and we had to get to the middle school at 10:30 am for Becca’s soccer pictures and then over to Becca’s game at noon. Abbi carpooled to her game and then we coordinated where to meet when they got back into town.
Let’s just say that by Saturday afternoon, I was exhausted. And very thankful that we’d had the extra phone to send with Hannah on Tuesday and Thursday, and with Abbi on Saturday so that we could coordinate carpooling, drop-offs and pick-ups. Not only that, but playing games on the phone gave Abbi something to do while waiting for her youngest sister to get pictures taken on Saturday, keeping her out of my hair while I was trying to get an active 7-year-old calmed down enough to brush her hair and wash her face.
I don’t anticipate things slowing down much either, with all three girls playing soccer, Abbi doing robotics, and both she and Hannah doing Lego League and Job’s Daughters. Being busy seems to be our new way of life for the moment…
The phone has been as much peace-of-mind as anything else – I feel so much better knowing that I have a way to reach whomever is riding with a friend or waiting to be picked up, even if I never end up actually needing to call. The phone has also been useful in other ways I never expected – our regular family plan for our iPhones does not have unlimited minutes, and last month I went over because that’s the phone I use for work. Having the extra phone available for conference and other minute-eating calls is extremely helpful, especially since with the unlimited plans, I don’t have to worry about how much we’re using it for calling, texting or data. And I’ve used it several times when my iPhone has run out of battery as well – making it a backup phone that I carry myself when it’s not needed for one of the kids.
Another way I never expected having the third phone to be so handy was when the girls and I were running late (of course) to the visitation after Ron’s mom passed away last week. We got stuck in traffic, and a small rainstorm hit. The sun came out after a few minutes, and we were treated to an absolutely gorgeous rainbow that kept us company for almost the whole drive. We knew that Grandma was with us – and Hannah was able to use the extra phone to snap photos of the rainbow from the her seat while I concentrated on driving (using my phone to find the funeral home).
I’m sure there will be many other uses we’ll find for the third phone line over the coming months – and having that peace-of-mind is one thing that I know will help keep me sane as we navigate these busy weeks ahead. We are still considering the idea of switching at least one of our iPhones over to the Walmart Family Mobile service as well – so far we’ve been nothing but impressed and happy with both the phone and the service we’ve received. Paying the first bill online was easy, and the online account management and information was also easy to navigate to set parental controls on the phone.
So far we haven’t limited much (other than to block adult content for web access) but as the phone gets used more and more, I’m sure we’ll need to have additional safeguards and controls in place, and I’m thrilled we have that option available to us with the Walmart Family Mobile plan.
Want to learn more about how to connect and save money with the Walmart Family Mobile plan, powered by TMobile? Check out the latest issue of Live SoFab digital magazine below for Smart Talk tips from 3 Social Fabric Bloggers – as well as other great back-to-school ideas!