For a long time we had one laptop the girls shared. This meant they spent all their time stretched out next to each other staring at the same screen as they played different games.
The girls decided they wanted to use the money they received as communion gifts to purchase a tablet computer. We spent a lot of time discussing different tablet options. Should we buy one so we had one laptop and one tablet? Should we buy two, giving them each a tablet? Which tablet should we buy? How much hard drive did they need?
It was a long research process because we were weighing our options at an interesting time in the girls' development. More and more they want their own stuff. They don't want to share everything anymore. Some people might think this is a bad development, but we see it as a good sign. They are still sharing most things, but they are getting older. It's natural for them to want their own stuff as they get older.
We decided to get them each a seven-inch tablet. This was within their budget (mostly) and fit their desire for their own tablets. We thought it was a good idea for them to be responsible for their own electronic devices. In our minds we saw them using the laptop sometimes and the tablets other times, with the iPods thrown in here and there. We thought they'd play separately, using the tablets for some alone time away from each other.
What has happened is the girls stretch out right next to each other and play the same game on their own tablets. It's not what we expected, but it's a pretty entertaining development. Rather than one of them handling the keyboard while the other one helped make decisions, they each have control their own device and discuss each decision anyway. They are teaming up to play two games at the same time on two different tablets.
Oh, we know the novelty will pass, but it's fun to watch right now. They proved once again that what we think will happen might not happen and that's ok. They will develop their own strategies for getting the most out of their electronics, even coming up with outcomes better than we could imagine.