Open thread: Taking a break from technology

Last Saturday night (March 26), I participated in Earth Hour by turning off the lights, switching off our computers, and powering down our phones. I reluctantly ran around the house in the minutes before 8:30 turning off lights and looking for candles. I rounded up my husband and we searched for candles. We found four and placed them on the hearth of the fireplace.

My husband and I sat on the couch and talked. I laughed a little too loud at one point and then the little guy cried out (he’s a light sleeper). I went into his room and settle him down, but then I came back I sat back down on the couch in the dark and resumed chatting and staring at the flickering lights.

We had a rogue candle.

While lighting the candles, I dropped the match right into the small glass cup to avoid burning my hand and that flame flickered up erratically, scorching the side of the glass. The three other candles were still, but this flame moved and danced around.

I tried to take photos of the candles as we wrapped up the hour. I had been staring at the flames, so I didn’t notice what was written on the side of the biggest candle. I turned it around and saw the saying…

It felt as magical as New Year’s Eve
Chatting with my husband in the dark was the highlight of the weekend. Turning everything off and taking a breather with the ones you love is valuable and important. For me it’s the computer, for you it might be your TV or phone — turn them off and take a break. It’s okay. It’s worth it. You’re worth it.
Posting is going to be light until mid-week. I’m not sick this time, but I’m working against a deadline.
In the next couple weeks, I’m going to work to streamline my content, make things a little more predictable, and organize things ahead of my blog’s redesign:
  • “Open thread” blog posts will be combined with food news and book club information and appear on Monday.
  • Saturday will be “My Lunch” day (where I post my lunches and my son’s), but I can’t guarantee what time I’ll get those posts up because they take a long time to put together (I know I have two weeks to share with you — know they will be coming, but maybe not today).
  • I would love to have one day devoted to guest blog posts, but some weeks I have lots of guest bloggers and other weeks I have none.
  • Any organizational suggestions you have would be welcomed.
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2 thoughts on “Open thread: Taking a break from technology

  1. To Dawn: What a one-sided, biased article. Anyone who knows Nina Planck's writing should know that she is a defensive omnivore who is always looking to find fault in vegans, though many vegans (including myself) live healthy, happy lives and successfully give birth to and raise children. She cites absolutely no evidence for her broad, sweeping statements against veganism, some of which are completely untrue. Furthermore, she completely ignores the simple truth that the ethical argument for veganism is a key reason why many people choose to go vegan.

    For a far more accurate, scientific, and balanced perspective, I suggest readers use the website of Virginia Messina, RD, for information on how to maintain health on a plant-based diet. I have found her nutritional advice to be direct, clear, and honest, and her credentials are numerous, unlike this journalist who pretends that her opinions have scientific credibility. Messina recently published an article about vegan diets for children, which can be read here: For more information, check out her website at

    To Mrs. Q: Please forgive me for the counterattack in your comments. As a vegan, I take great offense at the article that this other commenter posted, and I did not want to let this libel stand unchallenged. On a far more relevant note, I greatly agree with you about the need for turning off technology and letting ourselves take a break. It is so easy to get caught up in the rush and the frenetic pace of things that we don't take the time we need to recharge. As a busy college student, I find the best way for me to unwind is yoga. I know this makes me sound pretty crunchy, but it can be hard for me to lay down my books and stop running between professors' office hours. In my yoga practice, I am able to give myself the mental space to just be in the present, without my mind speeding along to the next thing I need to get done. It's not easy, and I'm not always successful in releasing my thoughts, but it's something, just like your time with your husband.

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