“Are you two texting each other?” a server might playfully ask John and I as we enjoy a dinner out at a local restaurant. We are a very connected couple, however when we’re together and on our phones we’re usually fact checking our conversations, adding to our in-person interaction by briefly referencing an online source. The internet is a huge part of our lives, especially at home where my office is based.
How We Stay Connected
I built my first website when I was still in high school (before the turn of the last millennium) and the internet has been a vital part of my existence ever since.
Photo editing, website development and coding, video streaming, graphic design, copywriting, audio recording and transcription, online billing, and social media management make up the first hour of my morning — and if I’m lucky I already have a coffee in me with another brewing.
Working for myself, and working from home, the internet is crucial to my entire process. We’ve been with Shaw since moving to the West End 11 years ago and with Shaw’s WideOpen Internet 150, users like us have 1 terabyte of data per month and no charges for data overages so they’re never in any danger of surprise charges.
I have co-owned sixty4media, a WordPress website development firm, since 2008 and since 2004, I have published the online behemoth of Vancouver events, travel, history, and happenings that is Miss604.com.
From my home office, I write thousands of words in half a dozen articles every day, correspond with major international corporations, promote local non-profits, research the history of Vancouver, and make time to Skype with John throughout the day to stay grounded. I edit photos and upload them to Flickr or Instagram, Facebook or Twitter. Then there’s HootSuite, which is open all day, every day, to help me schedule all of my social media publishing.
My online bookkeeping app is where I manage my business, and expenses, like what we pay to have all of this connectivity. Shaw’s WideOpen Internet 150 starts as low as $49.90 per month for the first 12 months on a two-year rate-guaranteed plan.
Lately I’ve also been obsessed with tracking the local bike share program, Mobi, for which I registered last week. I’m determined to take a bike to a meeting one of these days to try out the service. In the meantime, I check my taxi app or Translink‘s realtime mobile schedule if I need to leave the office.
When you think of the internet, many people think of play. Gaming, apps, reading articles, posting photos, and chatting with friends. In our downtime, we’ve also been known to binge watch a series or four. Being connected doesn’t mean working all the time, or more importantly ignoring who you are with in the room. We do have days where John will be streaming an MLS Live soccer match on our TV PC while I’m catching up on a Netflix series on my iPad. Other days, John will be playing a game on his iPad Mini and I’ll be catching up on my recorded episodes of the Great British Baking Show.
150 Mbps speeds with Shaw WideOpen Internet 150 through Shaw’s advanced WiFi modem means that there is more than enough bandwidth to facilitate both of our screen time, so nobody has to deal with buffering issues.
We’ll both come together again to FaceTime with his family in Iowa after we cook a meal using a recipe — you guessed it — that we found online.
We also have days when we’ll put a YouTube playlist up on the TV PC and stream songs we want the other to hear. Like that time I had never heard 38 Specials’ “Hold On Loosely” and then I was thoroughly introduced to their entire catalogue in one evening.
To enable us to have fun outside of the home, I make reservations for restaurants online from my computer using Open Table or Bookenda, and follow up with Yelp reviews. While we’re out we can check on our Nest thermostat, and at the end of the day, we even use the internet to manage the lighting in our house with Philips Hue.
All of these tools, websites, and apps help us stay connected in a way that enriches and empowers our lives. For more information about Shaw WideOpen Internet 150 speed and pricing can be found here.