Interactive Storytelling #StreamTeam #ad

I have some exciting news for parents today!  You may need to sit down for this one folks …

Disclosure: I have been compensated to share this post. The opinions on this blog are my own.

Not that I want to age you (Ha!), it may look that way but the truth of it is life is in constant change.  I think it’s amazing how quickly some things do change!  Take; for example, technology that is in perpetual change.  Buy a computer today and you’ll see that in 6 months (approximately) it becomes obsolete.  You have to keep up with the changes or you’ll be left behind.

In my opinion, Netflix has revolutionized how we watch “TV” … that’s just it, you don’t even need a TV anymore!  The younger generation isn’t sitting in front of a TV.  Our youth is watching on their iPads, laptops, smartphones, and any other gadget they might have.  The tube might just become extinct in my lifetime.

Netflix has done it again!

If you’re my age; or older, you might remember those books that you are control over the outcome of the story you’re enjoying?  Well, Netflix has thrust innovation into full gear! Netflix  has placed control back into the viewers hands … just in time for summer.

Today, Interactive Storytelling on Netflix launches, allowing children to be in complete creative control of what their characters end up doing and saying by giving them the ability to choose from multiple paths for their favourite characters to play out on-screen. With so many endings and choice points, kids will be able to watch the same title over and over, without hearing or seeing the same exact story – a gift of constant discovery for them, and reprieve for mom and dad!

Netflix is the first to offer something like this on a global scale with three brand new titles, starting with Puss in Book: Trapped in an Epic Tale, which will be globally available on iOS and TV devices today, and followed by Buddy Thunderstruck: The Maybe Pile, and Stretch Armstrong: The Breakout later this year.

IMG_3376You sink into the sofa and fire up Netflix. You settle in to watch everyone’s favorite swashbuckling feline Puss in Boots. You chuckle as Puss in Boots finds himself in the story of Goldilocks with the Three Bears staring at him.
And then… you’re asked to make a choice:
Should these bears be friends or foes?
It’s actually your choice to make. Your adventure! You decide how the story proceeds and what Puss in Boots does next.

IMG_3377Kids are eager to “play” with their favorite characters and are already inclined to tap, touch and swipe at screens.  They also talk to their screens, as though the characters can hear them. Now, that conversation can be two-way.

Intrigued?  I suggest getting ready some snacks and drinks so that you and your kids can discover this ‘new world’ together.

Safe journeys!

It’s Important to Stay Connected #StreamTeam #ad

It’s so important to stay connected with your kids.  My daughter is 19 and I try to stay connected always … always have.  It’s great to have open communication and a good relationship but it’s work.  As a parent, you have to commit to be present even if you’re tired, not interested, or have a headache. Yes, being a parent is work.  It’s gratifying but it’s work nonetheless.

Disclosure: I have been compensated to share this post. The opinions on this blog are my own.

I’m not the only one.  Canadian parents (82%) are already watching teen shows to feel closer.  Watching Netflix together provides common ground and a place to start a discussion.

Recently, I watched 13 Reasons Why.  It’s not what I would normally pick but it’s what kids are watching.  Since I want to be in “the know” I had no choice, and so I obliged.  It turns out that I enjoyed it.  I didn’t enjoy the idea that some people might misconstrue the idea behind the show.  I enjoyed it because it was well done, and it that it was done.  This means that it will open up the eyes of many parents that live believing that “it won’t happen” to them or their family.  The truth is it can! It can happen to the best of us, and it can happen to the worst of us.  A good way to prevent an unfortunate tragedy from happening is through communication.  Parents have to be willing to accept that any way is a good way as long as it is a way to communicate with their children.  Keep in mind, as children get older it gets more difficult to keep those doors of communication open.I actually saw 13 Reasons Why alone, but then was able to casually say “yeah, I saw it, what did you think?”.  I’m fortunate that I don’t have an issue with my daughter when it comes to talking about any topic that is serious.  Again, it’s because I have always worked hard at being present in her life.

Life has gotten much more complicated than when I was a teen.  What got me through it was knowing that I could go to my Mom with just about anything … good or bad.  When I had my daughter, I vowed to be that Mom to her.

Get more crisis info here:

This Month of April #StreamTeam #ad

This month (April) is a special month because it’s my birthday.  I’ll be 49 years old.  April is also earth month; it’s supposed to me a month in which we bring our attention on matters pertaining to earth where we can educate ourselves, reflect on what we are doing right or wrong, and then learn to appreciate what we have … just a little more.  It’s a time in which we should be experiencing eye-opening facts; however, the only eye-opening fact that I am experiencing is the fact that it has been 3 months since my mom’s passing.

Disclosure: I have been compensated to share this post. The opinions on this blog are my own.

Whoa; “how does this fact pertain to Netflix” you ask?  Hang on to your chair, that’s what I’ll be explaining next.

In no way, shape, or form am I saying that Netflix is helping to perpetuate the pain that I continue to feel since my mom passed on.  Au contraire, Netflix has helped me indirectly by just being Netflix:

  1.  For my state of mind it has been a distraction.  I find something, anything new or old to watch and pretty much just let it play (in the background) like white-noise if you will.  I continue doing whatever it is I am doing, while Netflix provides me company.
  2.  For my entertainment it has been excellent.  Binge-watching is something that I am happy to do with certain shows.  For example, Downton Abbey on April 6th (coincidentally my birthday) had its latest season become available … two nights later and I was done watching it!  It’s a break from reality … from the pain I am feeling!

…. last, but not least ….

3.  For reminiscing purposes; remembering happy moments in my life, Netflix unknowingly provided the perfect movie for me.  ‘Night Train to Lisbon’ appeared under my Netflix profile, as an option to view.  Due to my Portuguese background; naturally, I was drawn to it and decided to watch it.  While the movie was of interest to me, I can’t really say that it would be equally of interest to others.  You see, out of everything possible in the world, this movie called out to ME and while I watched the story unfold I noticed that the story itself was no longer the focal point.  For me, the focal point was focusing on the fact that this movie had been filmed exactly across the street from my Grandmother’s house in Lisbon!  Incredibly, I noticed the building in the movie and I was taken back to every summer of my youth!  I had spent almost every summer (2 months at a time) of my youth!  I was very familiar with the majority of the locations the movie was filmed at.  Oh the memories!  Suddenly, I realized just how much I missed those days.  I was sad … and happy … and then a smile came out of the depths of me and spread across my face.  It became happy memories.  I accepted that they had made me feel sad because I knew I could not have those moments back.  Those moments submersed themselves into the sea that is my past.  This ‘sea of memories’ (my past) can’t be re-lived; however, I can always choose to ‘dive’ into it whenever I want to remember any of them.