Skype is a wonderful way to keep in touch. You can cover SO MUCH more in an hour-long conversation than you can in an email that takes you the same amount of time to dictate. My sister Annette was the first person that I tried Skyping with. We'd occasionally talk on Skype, but not very often. I miss Annette and her kids so much after their fun visit a few weeks ago, so I'm determined to Skype with them more often, because there's just something to be said for having an actual conversation, instead of just corresponding through emails.
The person I've kept in touch with via Skype the most is my friend Nate. We became good friends when he was here for school, and when he moved away after that I wasn't sure how well we'd be able to keep in touch. I know I'M good at sending/responding to emails, but lots of people just aren't so good at it! Nate and I started Skyping after he left and we talk on a semi-regular basis, which is great, because it's enabled us to keep in contact with each other. He just carries his iPad around his house and takes me wherever he goes, whether it's the kitchen, living room, etc. It's fun to feel like I'm right there with him.
I also Skype with my dear friend Sienna. She lives less than 15 minutes away, but I just don't have the opportunity to see her as often as I'd like. She and I email each other all the time, but then I asked her if she wanted to try Skyping. It's awesome talking to her on Skype because we talk about a lot more things in much more depth than we did it in our emails.
My sister Kristin moved to California at the end of 2010, and I haven't seen her or her family since. It would cost a pretty penny for her family of seven to visit, even if they drove—and especially if they flew. It seems unfair that they have to live 30+ hours away, ONE WAY! Anyway, I've asked Kristin to get a webcam several times over the past two and a half years so that we can Skype each other, but she never did. So I took matters into my own hands! Actually, when I got a new computer a few months ago, I decided that I'd send my old laptop to Kristin's family for them to use after I transferred all of my files off of it. (The laptop was only a few years old and it was still in great condition; I just needed something a little more current to support my specialized software.) It's been a win-win situation for all of us. A win for them to have a laptop again (since her husband's laptop bit the dust several months ago), and a win for me since my laptop has a built-in webcam. Hooray…now we can finally Skype each other!
We've talked on Skype several times since I sent my laptop to Kristin last month. It's so amazing to see her sweet face and to hear the sound of her voice. It's truly like "old times" and makes me remember all of the good times we had in the five, glorious months when Kristin's family lived with us while her husband Scott was looking for a job after graduating. It's also been so fun to see my nephews! If Kristin calls me when the boys are around they crowd around the laptop. They like to wave, make bunny ears (or moose antlers), get as close to the camera as they can and open their mouths, show me projects they've made or other things they're working on, etc. Even though I haven't seen the boys in more than two and a half years, they're still exactly the same, and they still know who Aunt Heather is!
I'm so grateful for awesome technology that allows things I would've never thought possible a few years ago.