Okay my Grandmother is quite possibly the biggest worrier on the face of this planet...and no this apple didn't fall too far from the tree, God help me. Her extreme worrying became even more evident to me last week when she stayed with me. I believe the question "Is the alarm on?" was asked about 143 times in 5 days.
I was really concerned what her reaction would be when we told her we were living overseas for 2 years. Although better than I expected, she still cried and made a few references to us being mauled by crazy foreigners. "Well you're going to have to call me every single day so I know you two are okay!"
After a few failed attempts to explain to my Grandmother about roaming charges I decided to start looking at other options of communication...options that excluded email on her part because she can barely use her remote controls. I needed to find some sort of technology that wouldn't cause her more stress than enjoyment.
What I found was HP's Presto Printer. It is a printer that with service (less than half of what my internet costs) gives a person an email address and then just prints the emails for them up to 3 times a day. Looked good, not a lot of buttons, made specifically for seniors and had good reviews. So I bought it for her birthday and gave it to her last week.
Monday I got an email telling me when she had plugged it in. Almost instantaneously my phone rings and on the other end of the line is my ecstatic Grandmother.
In between her screaming for my Grandfather to come in the room to look she is giggling and telling me "It works! It works!! I'm getting one right now!! Oh it is from you, pictures of me at the botanical gardens! Oh, Oh, I'm getting another one, it is pictures of Spencer (great grandchild who lives in South Dakota)!!! Oh, here comes one from your brother!!" Seriously she was beyond thrilled to be hearing from all of us and the pictures just sent her into Grandma euphoria.
I seriously cannot recommend this thing more if you have a Grandparent who is left out of the loop because they can't "do a computer". It is really easy to set up. As the account manager you just enter your family's emails (this keeps spam out), enter the times of day you want them to print, you can even change font sizes or styles...it even monitors their ink level for you.
I've emailed my Grams every day this week...just a quick hello or a quick story from my day...a picture here and there. I know that these few minutes I've spent typing have meant the world to her. I also know that she won't have to worry about me while we're overseas and I won't have to pay $6.00 per minute to talk to her all the time.
Another huge perk is I now know what I am getting her every single year for Christmas...another year of service on her Presto.
If you're interested you can go to their website but I recommend buying one on Amazon, you'll save like $30 and you can get free shipping.