How We Use Fin as Parents
Andrew Staub, 9 Nov 2017
Fin is a part of our family. Fin knows our kids — their ages, schools, doctors, babysitters, activities. Fin helps us plan vacations, manage our schedules, find fun activities, buy each other presents, and remember milestones and stories. My wife, Rachel, and I have been using Fin for the past year and a half and I’m excited to share some of the ways we use Fin as parents.
Managing our calendar & setting reminders
We’ve got a pretty busy and variable schedule and Fin helps us keep on top of it.
“Hi! Can you please look at the calendar at the bottom of the email and please make sure all the events are entered on my calendar. Thanks!”
Begin forwarded message:
“Can you remind me on July 19th that I have to prep a snack for Jonah’s school for Friday the 21st thanks”
“Can you remind me Friday morning to take a last day of school picture of Jonah, thanks”
“Can you invite Andrew to this and put it on my calendar”
Getting stuff done (while our hands are full)
When I’m playing with my kids I don’t have the luxury of being able to pull out my phone and do whatever I want. Even if I ignore the fact that I want to limit time on the phone in front of my kids and be more present with them, the minute I take my phone out they want to grab it from me and look at pictures or videos. So when I’m playing with them and there’s something I need to do, I send Fin a quick audio message, put my phone away immediately, and have Fin do it.
“Any kid-friendly restaurants around here? Maybe mexican?”
“Can you order wipes on Amazon”
“Can you text Andrew to ask him to pick up Jonah’s milk on his way home? Thanks.”
Planning vacations, activities
Fin has done everything from suggesting potential weekend getaways, finding Airbnbs, recommending restaurants, to looking up local activities.
“Hey! Can you look up a nice airbnb place in LA for us to stay in July 28–31? We’re going to a wedding. The wedding is at the Millwick, the rehearsal dinner is in central LA and the after wedding brunch is in Sherman Oaks”
“We’re going to Lake Tahoe next week and are staying in the north. Any recommendations on things to do and places to eat with the kids?”
“Where can I take Hallie swimming tomorrow morning?”
Keeping more memories, remembering milestones
One of our favorite ways to use Fin is to help us remember stories about our kids. When we are laying in bed each night, Rachel and I often tell stories about what our kids did that day. Now, we also tell our stories to Fin. Fin transcribes, saves, and emails them to our kids and cc’s us (yes, our 3 year-old and 1 year-old have email addresses).
“Can you email this story to Rachel and Jonah and put it on the Jonah story list:
This morning, I told Jonah we were going to go to Tilden Farm and he said ‘is Mommy going?’ and I said ‘no, Mommy has to go to work’ and he says ‘is Hallie going?’ and I said ‘yeah’ and he said ‘Oh, it’s Daddy, Jonah, and Hallie time!”
“Can you send an email to Hallie with the subject line ’10 months and so many milestones’ and in the body of the email you could put:
You’re 10 months now and you’re doing so many different things. You said your first word, well it’s kind of more of a phrase, but you said: ‘all done,’ and you said it at the same time as signing it.
You also just started clapping your hands. And you’re so interactive with me, daddy and Jonah and you’re doing peek-a-boo and you can do peek-a-boo and you cover your eyes or you put your hands on the side of your forehead and you open them in anticipation for peek-a-boo, it’s so cute.”
I think most parents would admit that they appreciate help. It’s common practice to get help watching your kids, but as a parent there’s a lot to do outside of watching your kids — and that’s where Fin can help.