Using the Internet to Connect Your Family

By: Marie Christianson

In today’s society, many are caught up in the hustle and bustle of life and forget about the thing that is the most important to them – family. As a result, many family members lose touch with one another, forgetting to make phone calls and to write letters. Many blame family disconnectedness on technology, claiming it has removed the personal touch from our relationships by placing a computer between us and the ones we love. In reality, nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, the Internet, when used to its fullest potential, is a wonderful tool that can be used to help keep your family connected in an otherwise wild and busy world.

Keeping it Together

In one regard, the nay-sayers that claim we are becoming disconnected because of technology have a point – most of us are accustomed to communicating through the computer rather than in person. In fact, many people prefer shooting off an email or instant messaging a person rather than having a phone conversation. It is far more convenient and less expensive to use the computer than it is to pick up the phone. Quite simply, it is easier to have a conversation through the computer while multi-tasking than it is while on the phone. This desire to use technology, however, can be harnessed and redirected as a means for keeping the family in touch rather than for pulling it apart.

First of all, you can set up your own family chat room on a family website. Here, the family can get together and keep in touch with each other about all of the latest gossip, recent events, or the latest family vacation. Family members can even discuss the most recent episode of their favorite tv show. After all, the little and seemingly insignificant conversations are the ones that really hold the family together because they allow family members to get to know each other on a more personal and intimate level.

Special Events

When it comes time to plan your family reunion and other special events, an online event calendar posted on the family website can also be used to remind everyone of important dates and to assist in the planning. By coordinating through the family website, you can be sure your family reunion will not end up having five bowls of potato salad and no desserts. You can also make sure your cousin Beth brings her famous peanut butter pie.

Of course, what better way is there to help everyone remember all of the birthdays and anniversaries in the family than to use an online calendar that everyone can add to and change as necessary? Never again will your family forget to wish a family member a happy birthday or anniversary.

Even better, you can maintain an address book of your family members on a family website. The book can contain street addresses, phone numbers and, of course, email addresses and instant messaging id’s from outside of the family website. This address can be set up for only other family members to be able to view and to change. All too often, we lose touch with each other as we move from place to place. Through the help of technology and the address book on your family website, you can make sure this never happens again.

Sharing the Memories

In addition to being able to chat and keep in touch, a family website makes it possible to easily share in family memories through photographs and family video. With the several family website services that exist on the internet, it is simple to create a family website and then to upload your favorite family portrait or any other pictures you want to add to your online photo album. Or, you can upload videos filled with family fun.

Instead of standing between you and your family, technology can actually help you stay connected with them as you watch each other’s children grow and share in special memories such as birthday parties, Christmas, and graduation with your family website. Realistically, you cannot always be with your family members at each of their special events, but photographs and videos help keep you involved. Sending these precious memories through postal mail is time consuming and costly. In addition, it can take several days for the family video or photo to reach you. With a family website, the pictures and videos can be uploaded immediately after they are taken, allowing you to experience the special day or moment right away. How could you possibly stay more connected than that?

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Marie Christianson is a senior business analyst at Create a Family Website Now!

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