Hey Everyone!! I just want to post about my recent experience with Skype in communicating with my sister and Nathan. Skype is a free internet service that people can use to make phone calls or send texts or instant messages. You just go to skype.com and register and get a free account. I've used it in the past to video chat with friends or send instant messages. What I didn't know was that Nathan's dad has been using it to communicate with Sister and Nathan!
So here's what you can do: Unlike most skype services, calling Togo is not free-- but it's very cheap! Sister and Nathan have a cell phone, so all you have to do is type their number into your friend list. Then skype will help you set up an account that charges you per minute or per message. I keep $10 on my account at a time, and then skype will automatically re-charge me when my balance goes below $2. Once you have the phone number on your list, the rest is history! By calling that number, you can talk to Sister and Nathan through your computer (as long as you have a microphone and speakers, which many computers have built in). The video doesn't work, of course, since they don't have a camera, but it's an easy way to talk to them and keep track of your minutes. Plus, you can send text messages to their phone through skype! While they can't text back, they'll definitely receive the messages. I've found this a great way to quickly let them know you're thinking about them or to relay a message without having to consider the time change (they're 5 hours ahead of eastern time) or making them check their e-mail. For instance, when I saw that Debbie had gotten engaged I just texted that to them quickly (oh facebook!).
One thing that I am looking into: While I can hear Sister fine through my computer, she says that I'm not quite as clear. Supposedly a relatively inexpensive headset will fix this, so I'll be looking at best buy for that soon. Okay, so if you have any questions about how this works, or want me to correct some information, please feel free to e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org! Have a great day everyone!! =)