3 Tips for Finding the Right Summer Eyewear

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

After a few hours of shopping, I reached into my tote and pulled out my favorite pair of sunglasses. I slowly pulled them from their case and began to put them in place. Unfortunately, I've had them for a very long time and one of the arms fell off! So, at the next store, I spent near half an hour trying on pair after pair of sunglasses - only to ultimately walk out without having made a decision.

Why is finding the right pair of sunglasses so difficult? There's so much that I judge and weigh as I stare myself down in the tiny mirrors that sit beside the sunglasses. Are they the right shape? Are the frames the right color? Are the lenses too dark or not dark enough? Will they fall off when I ride bicycles with the kids - and can I wear them as we hike? Maybe they're best fitted for a relaxing day at the beach? I should probably get several pairs - each perfect for a specified use, right? I also wear contact lenses - but don't always wear contact lenses. This means that I may want to order a pair of prescription sunglasses. There's so much to consider.

After my week of trying to decide what I need to begin the summer, here are my top three suggestions for finding the right types of eyewear for this summer.

1. Prescription and Non-Prescription

I like to have both! My eyes can be so fickle from one day to the next. One morning I may have no trouble getting contacts to stay and other days they may refuse entirely. So, I need my sunglasses to fit both of these circumstances. For the days that I'll go sans contacts, I like to have my favorite frames and prescription shades close by so that I can easily switch between the two. If it's one of those glorious days where contacts are in agreement with my eyes - then I grab my non-prescription sunglasses. If you have a prescription, always be prepared and grab a pair of each type of sunglasses.

2. Your Summer Activities

Your daily activities will help determine which eyewear options are best for that day. There are days where we may not do too much. Perhaps a walk and a trip to the library. I prefer to go without the contacts and stick with my favorite eyeglasses and prescription sunglasses on those days. Other days, I may be out and about a lot - and would prefer not to have to switch between the different frames. On those days I wear contacts and my favorite non-prescription shades.

However, we may also go to the beach. On those days - I choose my lightweight sunglasses that goes better with a windy day in the sand. I also prefer a more tinted shade for those days. So much to consider, right?

I also grabbed a few prescription sunglasses frames for my husband and the kids - as they aren't currently wearing contacts but will need eye protection at the beach as well.

Have a summer wedding coming up? Grab a more trendy and stylish shade for those afternoon weddings.

3. Choosing Your Best Frame

Looking back through vacation photos - I've found that I haven't always made the right choice when deciding on sunglasses. The frames were sometimes right for my face and often were not. I hadn't known that different frame shapes would compliment my face better than others. When you're deciding on any eyewear, you should look for shapes that are in contrast with your face's shape. For instance, a round face will be complimented more when the eyewear has a square shape. It will help to contour the face a bit better. Those with an oval-shaped face may find that they can wear many different frame shapes. Oh how lucky for them! I found several options that will fit my face best at Discount Glasses. Since I need to buy several sets to get me through the summer - this was a great find.

What shape of frames are you loving this season?


5 Steps Parents Should Take When Passing Down a Smartphone

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Are you getting a new phone soon? Kids know that your phone upgrade means they get an upgrade, too, and they're often waiting eagerly with their hand out for your previous model. While you're distracted by your new phone's updated features, it's easy to give up the old model without giving the matter much thought. Don't hand off your old phone to your child or teenager without taking steps to protect your privacy and their safety first.

Set Ground Rules

Image via Flickr by Pabak Sarkar

A new phone offers the perfect opportunity to review the rules surrounding your kids' phone use. Even if you agreed on specific rules before they got their last phone, this is a chance to modify them according to your kids' age and behavior. New drivers will need new rules about texting or talking while behind the wheel, for instance, and children who are upgrading to their first smartphone might need guidance about downloading apps or sharing passwords with parents. It's a good idea to talk with tweens and teens about not sending inappropriate texts or photos. Also, decide what will happen if they go over their data limits. Once you've outlined a specific set of rules and consequences, make a contract with your child.

Don't Leave Safety to Chance

If your teen is a driver, ask your carrier if it offers an option that blocks texting while the phone is moving at road speeds. If not, consider a service like tXtBlocker, a paid service ($6.99/month) that can do the trick for you. Another option is to install something like DriveSafe.ly, a free service that reads text messages and emails aloud as they are received. Also, review some basic safety rules, like not giving away their whereabouts by checking in on social media, or at least limiting any check-in posts to a tight group of trusted family and friends.

Wipe It

What kind of data is hiding on your phone? Your apps might contain password information that would give your kids access to bank accounts or messages that aren't age-appropriate. Your browsing history is probably available on your phone, too. Even if you trust your kids completely, remember that they are more likely to lose the phone than an adult, which could cause your identity information or bank account to fall into the wrong hands. To be safe, find wiping information specific to your phone model, such as these instructions for resetting an iPhone 7, and do a complete hard reset on your phone.

Load It With Great Apps

Your kids will never be more agreeable to you adding tracking or safety features to their phone than while they're waiting with outstretched hands for their upgrade. This is the time to load the phone with whatever safety apps you want. Parental control apps let you filter the internet and social media. Tracking apps, often available through your carrier, will let you check on your kids' locations at any time. Safe driving apps are available so you can monitor the behavior of your teen behind the wheel. Other apps will let you monitor your kids' messages or online behavior.

Block Bad Apps

Teensafe has put together a list of apps that you should not allow on your child's phone for personal safety reasons. Some of these apps make kids more susceptible to bullying; others are used by predators to find victims. The list also includes apps that are considered risky, like Snapchat and Kik. Apps that are perfectly suitable for responsible teens, such as Tumblr, Whatsapp, and Vine, have no place in the pocket of a younger child. Only you can decide what is appropriate for your child's maturity level and personality.
Your teen might not be excited about going over rules and accepting safety and tracking apps, but the best time to establish your authority over the phone is before you've handed it over. Once they take possession, they'll quickly come to think of the phone as an extension of themselves, and they'll strongly resist anything they perceive as an invasion of their privacy or a rolling back of their autonomy.