My Self-Imposed Interactive Nanny Cam

We miss Dan a lot. You see, he works all day… at an office… far far away from our raucous good times. Sometimes he doesn’t make it home in time for dinner and we think about him and talk about him and set his place at the table just in case.

A couple of weeks ago we finally got our webcam hooked up and working so I decided to video conference him in to our evening meal. We sat the laptop on his placemat and initiated a web call right before we said the prayer. Then we started to eat while he worked, showing him bites of food in an effort to entice him home. It worked. It’s possible he came home because he could no longer get anything done with the sounds of our dinnertime filling his office.

It was so fun to have him “with us” that I’ve been connecting to him with the web cam frequently throughout the day. We’ll say hi and smile and wave a lot and then I’ll leave the camera running as I go about the day. He turns the volume down so he can get some work done and then periodically glances up at us to see what we’re doing. The sound of his fingers hammering away at the keyboard is comforting to me and it feels almost like he’s here with us. The sound of a keyboard is the sound of Dan.

Every once in a while he uses his view of the house to tell Laylee not to eat so close to the computer or to call out to Magoo to stop whatever he’s doing or face the most dire of consequences.

When I’m making dinner, I position the camera in the kitchen so he can have his own personal cooking show if he cares to glance up.

To me, this kind of big brother bonding is AWESOME. However I’ve spoken to a couple of other moms who were not so keen on the idea of having a live video feed of their day being broadcast to their husbands at work.

What do you think? Would you do it? Do you do it?

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43 Responses to My Self-Imposed Interactive Nanny Cam

  1. Erin Marie says:

    I think that’s awesome. 🙂 I don’t think I’d do it, just because I’m like that (I can’t think of a real reason right now, since it’s 3 in the morning – can’t sleep) but … I think that’s cool.

  2. Rebekah says:

    I do it via IM/email with hubs all day/every day. I love it, he loves it, we know what’s going on and we each respond when we aren’t in the middle of whatever we were doing. My laptop joins me just about everywhere and i glance over periodically to see what links he’s sent me, what he wants added to the grocery list, or who i need to call to clear something up, etc.

    I send him tidbits from emails/conversations and tell him what’s going on with our growing baby (coming in may!) and send him links from blogs and online stores. It’s great for us!

  3. My husband deployed to the Middle East when my first baby was 10 days old (this was 3 years ago). But we were able to talk to him and “see” him via webcam on a regular basis, so I am a HUGE fan of the webcam idea. Its the only thing that got us through our time apart!!!

  4. alex says:

    I think it is a great idea. I would love to do that with my husband now!!! We both work and not too far from each other, but just to know that we can see each other every once inawhile is awesome. Unfortch, my hubs loaths technology (i just made him get a cell phone last year!!!!–in case you were wondering we’re 26 not 76 dealing with new fangled gizmos)…maybe when we have kids he’ll see the benefit in that. Great idea. I think it is sweet.

  5. Dana says:

    We do it too! After a few days, it loses its novelty, but we still think it’s a great way to keep Daddy up-to-date with the happenings of our 4 children!

  6. Terina says:

    my husband hasn’t ever had a job where that would be possible. if/when he does deploy, i will be buying a laptop with the webcam on it so that we can do just that. and since we live far away from family, (hopefully we always will) webcams are in our future.

  7. Tigpuppy says:

    COOL! I love this idea! I’m a working monther and my hubby is a SAHD. I feel like I’m missing so much in the lives of our twins (who just turned 1) as it is. A webcam would be a great way to keep in touch with them all day!

  8. Helloheather says:

    Awwwwww…..that’s so sweet! I would love to set up a system like that. We miss my husband during the day around here, too. I think it’s a fabulous idea!

  9. Well, since my husband works from home, it’s not necessary. BUT…if he worked at an office, sure. I have nothing to hide. It would be sort of comforting. 🙂

  10. Carrie says:

    That’s so cute! I would do that, but my poor husband has an extremely difficult time multi-tasking, and having us on camera all day would wipe out his usefulness at work completely.

  11. Rebecca says:

    That’s VERY clever of you! My husband and I email back and forth all day, which helps keep us connected – and also helps him remember what errands to run at lunchtime, the lucky lucky man.

  12. I think it is wonderful asnd as long as I can control from my end what hubby doesn not need to see, it would be awesome, alas he can’t have a set up in his welding booth.

  13. Brandie says:

    Very cool. I think I would do it, but I don’t my hubby would enjoy it as much.

  14. Amy W says:

    I LOVE the idea! Darn, how can I get away with it at the Library where I work though 😉 Quiet and all that. Hmm, I think I want it in my daughters SCHOOL CLASS!! Oooh, that could be a can of worms, think of all the parents chiming in ‘hey, Lex, you better listen to your teacher! I see you!’
    Wow, 1984 (Orwell) is here.
    Speaking of cameras – doe anyone else ever look at the traffic cameras just in case you might be able to recognize a car you know? Not that the clarity is good enough, but it’s mesmerizing it is!

  15. Emily says:

    I think that is the neatest idea EVER. I would LOVE to be able to do this with my husband! Sadly, we don’t have all the equipment we’d need. But oh, how cool? How expensive is it to set up something like this?

  16. umm, well, if we did this, hubby would be shocked to learn that I don’t look beautiful all day long and usually only manage to brush my hair 5 minutes before he gets home. You know, so he doesn’t regret coming home to the swamp witch of death, fresh from battles of the diaper changing apocalypse or crawling from the depths of laundry hell.

  17. liza says:

    We did family home evening that way once when my husband was away on business. I think webcams are the greatest.

  18. Di says:

    I love this idea – Kayakboy is usually home in the evening but we got super fancy cell phones and we text and IM during the day. I also send him either pix or little videos of whatever fun thing we’re doing.

  19. Ker says:

    That sounds really cool. I have to second #16 Kimberly’s opinion, though. My mom and I were laughing the other day how we have both changed out of our pajamas five minutes before our husbands got home!

  20. mother of the wild boys says:

    I love this idea. I think it would be fun for us and my family back in Texas too. Although, we might have to mute it occasionally. Poor DH wouldn’t get any work done if he was listening to our 3 wild boys chatter the whole time. 🙂

  21. Lisa says:

    I think with little kids around this is a great idea! How wonderful for them to hear from their dad throughout the day and he can feel a part of their routine without waiting for the nightly “catch up” conversation.

    “The sound of a keyboard is the sound of Dan”. It is also the sound of Don. I know it well.

  22. Nicole says:

    How fun, although I don’t know if I want him to find out, I never make the bed before 4 pm.

  23. Amanda says:

    It’s a little creepy and obsessive…but if it works for you!

  24. FarmWife says:

    I love it. Husband would get fired in a heart beat for it (his place of employment isn’t exaclty family friendly & they have issues with the shortest of personal emails), but I would love to have his input throughout the day…especially since he works evenings & misses out on homework & bed time routines.

  25. seven says:

    I think it’s a cute idea.

  26. Julie says:

    I think it’s a good idea. I’d probably get more done if I knew he was watching! We use the webcam to talk with my parents and hubby’s parents so they can see their granddaughter and all her wonderful accomplishments…like walking and “talking”. : )

  27. Liz says:

    I think I would do it, but does that ever get distracting for Dan? just curious.

  28. Liz – Honestly not really. He’s pretty good at tuning us out when he needs to. Hmmm…. I wonder if that’s a good thing.

  29. Liz says:

    Well I don’t want to start any marital discord LOL

  30. I think that is awesome! I would love for DH to see all that I do during the day. I would love for him to see the kids in all the chaos that he misses. I don’t think it would work well for us, though. He is treating patients most of the day (not at his computer) and then when they are finally gone, he has a TON of paperwork and us “being there” would distract him and he’d get home a lot later! He barely makes it for scriptures and prayer and is NEVER home for dinner already.

  31. Caryn says:

    That sounds really cute. I love that you do that. I’m not sure that I would, however, on the days when I stay home and write. On those days, I wait for him to leave, and then I change into sweats, get comfy on the couch, and write, in between bouts of staring into space, talking to the cats, sipping tea, playing solitaire, checking my e-mail, and many other tasks that would not be the least bit interesting. I think that being observed during this time would make me self-conscious.

  32. Wendy says:

    That’s cool, but can i still check my emails and my Reader?

  33. HolyMama! says:

    that is so sweet. (and weird!) i’d feel compelled to get a whole lot more done than usual and constantly use my nicest Mommy voice ever. not that he’d even watch, actually. yeah. wouldn’t work for us, but that’s just us. 😀

  34. Jia says:

    I think that’s such a cute idea!

  35. Laura says:

    That’s a great idea, and I would love it, but I don’t think that my husband would be so thrilled about it!

  36. KYouell says:

    We did this for a short bit while my husband was checking out places to move to. Thank Heavens for Skype and the free video calls! As soon as we have 2 dimes to rub together again we are buying web cams for all the grandparents. (Well, as soon as those dimes make like bunnies and make more little dimes.) Until then the grandparents have to make do with DropShots.

    And I would TOTALLY be doing that too if my husband didn’t work from home.

  37. bee says:

    I think I would do it. Except for yesterday. I literally changed out of my pajamas 30 minutes before time for hubby to get home. He doesn’t need to know all that! 🙂

  38. Looney says:

    Sometimes, when I’m tired and grumpy and dealing with my three year old’s demands, I try to look at myself as if I were watching me–how would I think of myself if I saw me? That puts it into perspective for me–I WANT to be the best mom I can be. I can be tired and grumpy later, when I’m not on mom duty. So I would enjoy having my day broadcast–it would keep things in perspective for me, because after all, everything I do is soaked up by my child anyway.

  39. katherine says:

    I would LOVE that. We keep hubby on speakerphone a bit too much as it is. And I know THAT has to be distracting for him -but with the video feed, he could “control” how much of our loveliness he observes. 🙂

  40. Jen says:

    I’d love webcam if it were possible, since it isn’t we’ve become very attached to our text messaging plan.

  41. Rachel says:

    I don’t know what it is but being on camera wigs me out. It’s not that I’m doing anything crazy or embarrassing. I think it is more the idea that I might do something crazy and embarrassing.

  42. Lindsay says:

    I would rather leave my husband alone while he is at work, and I’d rather he left me alone while I was at home. We send e-mails and the occasional text message, and when he’s on a business trip we sometimes use the web cam so he can see his daughter, but honestly, I’d get really sick of him if we were communicating all day.

    That’s the nice thing about him having a job–it gets him out of the house! Then when he comes home, we’re glad to see him–not, oh, it’s you. As it is, sometimes I wish he would just go on a business trip already.

  43. Val says:

    We do this when hubby is away on business. He even carries the laptop around his hotel room so the kids can see where he is sleeping!
    Technology does have its moments!

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