I live in Baltimore, but none of my family lives near me. My parents and grandmother are in Florida, and my sister, brother-in-law, and niece (soon to be nieces) live in Arizona. My in-laws are similarly spread around the country. My parents-in-law live in California. I have one sister-in-law in Rhode Island and another plus her husband and their twins live in Manhattan. I obviously don’t get to see them on a regular basis. Skype has been a wonderful tool to be able to keep in touch with them, especially the little ones. I mainly Skype with my sister to see my 3 year old niece at this point. The twins are still a little young, but definitely in another year or so it will be a great tool to keep in touch with them.
This Christmas we were out in California with my husband’s parents, but thanks to Skype I got to see the nieces and nephew on Christmas. For some reason my sister and her family had not yet opened the Christmas gifts we had sent them long before Christmas, so last night when we Skyped with them I got to watch my niece open her Christmas presents from us. I sent her copies of Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus and Knuffle Bunny plus a plush Knuffle Bunny. I had taken those two books out of the library over Thanksgiving when they were visiting and she had me read them to her over and over again so I decided they would make good Christmas gifts. My librarian heart was filled with joy watching her get so excited about receiving books as presents. Skype is also good for reading stories to her, which is something I often do. Even though we have no kids of our own we keep a couple of children’s books in the house for that very purpose. Even though my family is far flung, Skype helps them feel a little bit closer.