Friday, May 27, 2016

The Miss Hap of Snapchat

Am I ready for Snapchat?
Snapchat? I know what you're thinking. "She's too old for Snapchat." And you know what? You are probably right.


Using the app was awkward at first. It took me a week to realize two of my contacts weren't being rude by ignoring my invitation; I had sent the invites to the wrong addresses. The two times I've received a video, by the time I realized what's happening, it was over, and I never even had the sound on. I accidentally deleted pics I'd taken that I wanted to share with Chuck, and I saved pics I probably shouldn't have. 

Initially, I took screen shots of every picture I received, worrying I would miss something if I didn't. My kids received a notification every time I took a screen shot. They were not always pleased.  You could call me the Miss Hap of Snapchat. 

In an entertaining article written by Will Oremus called "Is Snapchat Really Confusing, Or Am I Just Old?", the author said, 
"This is not to say that learning to use Snapchat is hard for old people, any more than it’s hard to learn Russian by being dropped onto a Moscow street and forced to navigate the city by trial and error. Let’s say instead that it takes a little practice." -Will Oremus 


Why Snapchat? There is only one reason. My 18-year-old son asked me to sign up. Let me tell you, that is quite an honor. I am WAAAY older than the average Snapchatter, who is 18. That my son even considered allowing his Shrink into his online world made me feel pretty special. 

Unlike Facebook where I have accepted hundreds of friend requests from online acquaintances and readers of my blog, I have limited my Snapchat contacts to immediate family and one persistent friend who begged me to join. The app allows this mom to have one more line of communication with her busy kids. They don't always have time for a call, or an extended texting session, but it's easy enough to add me to their list of friends when they are sharing a Snapchat picture or video.


If you are unfamiliar with Snapchat, basically, it is an app that allows you to send pics or videos to your closest friends, and the data sent disappears after a few seconds. The Snapchat video feature is similar to FaceTime or Skype, but in my experience, the connection is faster, with less dropped calls. (For more detailed information, you might want to check this out by J.J. Colao at Forbes.) 


While the kids and I have sent our share of silly selfies, the things I love most about Snapchat are the video calls, and the updates we send each other to show where we are or what we're doing. I am learning that my kids are pretty creative, showing me projects they're working on, things their pets do, recipes they've made, and a quick greeting that lets me know they're thinking of me. 

Living halfway across the country from my kids who are in Utah, I always wonder what they're up to, and how they're doing. My youngest sent pictures in his mortarboard, and a picture of the medal he earned as an honor graduate. He has just started to learn blacksmithing, leather tooling, and wood burning, and it is great to see his examples of his work.  My daughter sends pictures of her furniture refinishing projects, and we do video chats. 

With Snapchat, I never have to wonder for long what my children are up to. They know how much I miss them, and how much their pictures and texts mean to me. I feel connected to them despite the miles between us, and that makes my mishaps on Snapchat worth it.


  1. This was fun and since I have played with the idea of getting on Snapchat, I think it wiser I don't. Thank you for sharing your love of your kids and the joy this brings.

    1. Thank you for reading, Stella. I am still holding out on Instagram...


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