Beach Cottage Goes Unplugged

Tue 10th, Apr, 2012

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G’day lovelies, I have something interesting for you today.  I am taking up a challenge and you might wanna join in.


So here we are, three years of being online, 18 months of being plugged-in a lot of the time and recently, after getting an iPad for Christmas (which might I add has changed my life, not that I am addicted or anything) means I am able to blog right from the beach and turn my local cafe into my second study…so yes sirree you can safely say that I love technology, I love social media and more importantly it connects me to people who get me, who like what I am doing and more it allows me an outlet from my other life, the one where I am a mum, a laundry person, resident taxi driver and a cleaner.

The whole reason I got online and started a blog was for some me-time, I used the internet to have time off… as my blog grew I loved it more, and as social media grabbed me by the short and curlies, I found that being online gave me a lot….wow talking to people who like vintage furniture and white paint and the beach….boy it’s good!

However with all of that comes the question : when exactly then do I switch off?

…in my regular life I get that through, unless I really fancy it, not blogging at the weekend – but really the fact is we are all ‘on’ 24/7 these days…on line, on the phone, on call, on the go… we never switch off….and it’s now being said that for the sake of our mental health and our society, we should all take at least one day off a week to relax and unwind.

So when a challenge to switch off for a day landed in my inbox, I decided to take it by the horns




The challenge is to disconnect for 24 hours :

No blogging or posts.
No Facebook.
No tweets.
No phone calls or texting.

So what would it be like to switch off for just one day?  24 little hours?  What do you think?  Could you do it? Would it freak you out or would it be like a rebirth for your brain?



I have seen a few other bloggers over the last few months take up the challenge and the results have been interesting to say the least, but what about me?

Could I go unplugged, could I not take a million pictures off my feet in one day, could I not whip out my camera while walking on the beach, could I not text my lovely daughter and see how she’s going at school, could I not Instagram a white vintage piece of furniture, could I not phone Mr Beach Cottage and express my undying love for him (cough cough)

You know what?  I am not sure I want to in my everyday life, though for sure if I do switch off for the day or even for the afternoon I do get so much more done, I mean goodbye Instagram, hello ironing school uniforms…no in my everyday life, I want to connect, to be absolutely honest, I love being online.

But the more I play this game, the more I realise the downtime, the time away from the computer, the time when the phone is switched off is just as important…and how nice it is to just not be wired.

And so, in my little life I plan not being wired…I like to think about when I, and where I, will go and be unplugged, and where better would that be than on an Australian beach?

What about you, where do you think is a good place to get away from it all and where would you like to go to switch off from the constant noise of phones, the internet and social media?



Would you dream of an Australian beach for some unplugged me-time?

I would love to go somewhere like Kangaroo Island (come to me baby), it’s been on my list to visit for too long now…somewhere that is one of the Lucky Country’s natural wonders and somewhere that is dedicated to national parks, somewhere, though it’s only a few minutes from the mainland, is a million miles away from the hustle and bustle of life …a place where you can disconnect from the world and reconnect with the things and people that really matter…

Yes a place full of Australian sunshine, fresh coastal air and natural beauty would be a great place to pull the plug on all things wired.

Would that make me switch off?   Oh yes, I do believe it would, Kangaroo Island could so be my Beach Cottage Go-To Unplugged destination, because we all know there is something about not doing a thing, nothing, when one is lying on the beach…the hardest thing you have to do if you are unplugged and on the beach is breathe and take it all in.

So, on the 28th April Beach Cottage Goes Unplugged for 24 hours, I am soooo looking forward to it…




… and I would lurve it if you joined me…plus there will be a chance to win a trip to Kangaroo Island and $50 worth of KikkiK stationary (yes the Kikki stationary you often see on this here blog and I about die-for, including the lovely little to-do notepad right here)





If you fancy joining in, (and there are a few other bloggers involved too) just note down the date 28th April 2012 and you can comment on here or let me know on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter if you are in…then we can all go unplugged and re-birth our brains together, sound good?  On th blog that day there will be a little post to tell you that I am in the land of Disconnect, a link to a chance to win a trip to Kangaroon Island & a note to say that  the Beach Cottage Unplugged Challenge has begun!

Where would you like to go for 24 hours unplugged… love to know?



This post sponsored by Nuffnang & South Australian Tourism  Beach Cottage Sponsored Post Disclosure Policy

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77 Responses to “Beach Cottage Goes Unplugged”

  1. What a challenge! I’ll let you know as time goes on….that really is a hard one. The only consulation would be that you would be unplugged as well. You know I am a dedicated follower!

    • sarah says:

      I think it will be liberating Shirl’ which is one of the reasons I wanted to do it…so tempting for me to always be plugged…the worst bit for me since my iphone is that I am addicted to taking photos! xxoxoxo

  2. Cyndia says:

    I love the idea! Will have to choose a day after the 28th though- in the Ststes we are having rallies all over the country to fight these ridiculous wars against women that are going on. But I’m going to do this- sometimes when I’m going out with my hubby I will deliberately leave the iPhone at home. He is always so surprised and happy that i do!

  3. bonitarose says:

    I will do this with you.. I wish I had a beautiful beach like that to get away too for the day.. but instead, I may take the time to pack up things in my Studio for our upcoming move to FL… where we will live near the ocean and be able to walk the seashore… one day soon! xo Lovely post!

  4. Roberta says:

    Hey Sarah,
    I have to agree with you that the BEST place to go unplugged is at the beach. I never did understand why people distract themselves from the sound of waves lapping on the shore and seagulls overhead with blasting radios or talking on the phone. It’s the only way to truly hear the Universe speak to us in a still, small voice and what better place then at the beach?
    Count me in!! I just hope it’s a really nice warm day here in the USA on the 28th:)

    • sarah says:

      oooh great Roberta, yep I always get cranky if anyone sits near me with a radio on the beach! x

  5. I find it eerily coincidental that I just came off a 30 hour technology break to check reader and there you have it… your “challenge”.

    I decided to unplug for a couple of reasons:

    My arse was sore (too much time on said bottom) and more importantly I had gotten a few comments from the fam recently.

    - my husband recently referred to me as “computer girl” ( no thanks)
    -while taking some lovely pictures of my kiddos in the garden, my daughter (in a rather sarcastic tone) asked, “oh, are we doing this for the BLOG?”. yikes.

    So I wanted to give them 100% of my attention.

    Yesterday, without announcement, I decided that I would not open my laptop. I don’t have any other internet devices. We spent the day in the garden, knee deep in dirt and loving every minute of it. We laughed, dug, and planted. And I managed to make two pretty decent meals.

    I woke up sore (first big dig in the garden) with a bit of a rosy glow. And happy.

    I really want to challenge myself to unplug entirely on the weekends. Yep.
    xo Jay

    • sarah says:

      Yes Jay, I hear you, I try to stay away from the computer at weekends but to be honest, it’s been slipping in lately….this challenge will be my kickstart xo

  6. kerrie says:

    I actually have already been ‘unplugging’ alot this new year…and it has been renewing. Last week while my kids were on spring break I spent the entire holiday unplugged and it was nice. I even began reading a new book that was waiting on my bedside table for weeks. I weeded, planted our veggie garden, helped shovel and smooth crushed granite around the potager and garden walkways…cooked alot for the fam bam and their friends, played board games, sipped beer…yes…it is good to get back to living without all the gadgets again.

    • sarah says:

      yes thanks Kerrie, I am interested to see how you went with it…the cooking and veggie garden bit sounds exactly what I will be doing xo

  7. Ohhh, don’t know if I could/would do this. I am too into the cloud, you know.

  8. Sarah says:

    What a great idea you can count me in too. I only have been writing a blog since December although I was reading many before then. I have found I am spending more and more time on the computer even the dog has noticed!

  9. Jos says:

    Def on for this challenge – and I am going to go all crazy and up it and will (probably regret) encouraging (forcing) my 11 yr old to do the same. Hmmmp – sucker for punishment? Could be excruciating – but nothing like a challenge – and we have big garden projects to tackle – so the distraction of Mr John Deer and power tools could do the trick. Wish me luck!!!!!! (Will just disable the internet and hide the box – works a treat other times i have done it – yes this gal’s broomstick is alive and flying in the Highlands!!!!!!

    • sarah says:

      oooh I like your style, I will do that too, had not thought of pulling the internet…there will be some broomsticks around here too I reckon…with the Beach Cottage Crew on them haha xoxo

  10. christie says:

    I love to be unplugged! No one bothers you. there are nice long stretches of time where you are uninterupted. What I do miss when i am unplugged, is access to all the pretty pictures on blogs etc. I do better if I have a book or something before I unplug.
    ~ C

    • sarah says:

      Yes I miss that about being unplugged and all the answers and learning I get from being online, 24 hours though I think I will be ok! x

  11. Rona says:

    Well! I am going to mark this day on my calendar! I have been ‘cutting down’ on laptop time quite a bit recently…mostly because I seemed to be spending a lot of time being inspired to do stuff and not actually doing it! So I’ve been giving myself 30 minutes first thing to check e-mails, blog posts and facebook…then I don’t allow myself to touch the lappy again until supper time! works a treat and I get loads done on the days I do this. To do it for a whole 24 hours would be good, although I may have to choose another date if Hubby gets called overseas as the lappy will be out only way of keeping in touch.

  12. Sarah says:

    Well, its a great idea and I would probably head to the coast here in New Hampshire…not quite the same cache as an Aussie beach, but, I’ll take it (plus I have no choice!). Otherwise I will head to Maine to my little cottage where I am NOT wired at all and get to read design mags and watch “House of Eliot” on DVD…or ‘Everybody Loves Raymond’ or an old show. That is bliss…love the idea of no technology as we are all sooooo hard wired these days…;-)

  13. Judy says:

    Kangaroo Island is one of my fav memories from my Australia trip. Lying outside on grass staring up at the Milky Way as clear as could be…unbelievably awesome (the Roos and koalas were great too). I hope you go and take/share lots of pics.

  14. Melody says:

    I would love to unplug with you all on the 28th!!
    The only thing I cannot unplug is my work cell phone.
    I am the “go to” person for 100 Senior & Disabled tenants in my building.
    I have to stay connected to the medical alarm company. But count me in!!!!!
    I’ve been out of touch due to illness and this is just the thing I need to get back my sanity!!
    Thanks for putting the challenge out there. Looking forward to it.
    I’ve missed your blog Sarah!

    • sarah says:

      Welcome back Melody, I thought I hadn’t seen you for a while, sorry to hear of your illness.

      so pleased your in but yes those tenants need you to keep the phone plugged in!

  15. Bec says:

    OK it is in my diary but I cannot promise anything….I am already scared – no phone as well, it will be a challenge!

  16. Dar says:

    That’s a tall order, my friend! I have a “sickness” with my iPhone and iPad. It’s just not right, I know…but I just cannot help myself!
    I do have a question…what app do you use to blog from your iPad? I’ve dabbled with a couple and haven’t found “the one” just yet.

  17. Liz says:

    Yes, I’ve been thinking of taking a week or two to be ‘unplugged’, but always seem to be able to put it off. 24hrs sounds achievable. ;)

  18. Jami says:

    Well I will definitely join your challenge and would LOVE to visit Kangroo Island…sounds lovely! That’s quite a swim though and my arms would surely be tired by the time I got there so I’ll opt for something a little closer (although I’d probably trim down to a size 2…hmmmm…wait…rethinking…how many miles is it?). I’d probably head to a cabin in the middle of the woods with no reception whatsoever so I can’t cheat. Laying on a rowboat in the middle of a lake would be just as ducky as laying on the beach so long as the mosquitos have something better to do. I’ve been un-plugging a bit here and there from the blog & social media, etc. but never completely 100% with my cell phone. Hello 1985, I’ve missed you.


    P.S. I’ve never heard “grabbed me by the short and curlies” before. Ha!

    • sarah says:

      I like the sound of your rowboat Jami…I need to come stay with you someday I would be in white linen & grey heaven haha

      that would be one big ole swim!

      I am going a little un-plugged these holidays…my kids deserve it :-)

  19. Vicki says:

    Wow! That’s a big challenge! I’m intrigued! 24 hours… seems doable… so does lose 20 lbs. and I haven’t had success on that one yet. But, I’m always up for a challenge!

  20. Margaret says:

    I’ll have a go at this challenge. Your post has come at the perfect time – I hate it when my boys say – “you’re ALWAYS on the computer!” and with them at home on holidays I’m hearing it more and more – Time to get offline! 28th April it is! (just have to make sure my boys notice!)

  21. jan says:

    Oh….Kangaroo Island….I live in Adelaide..all my family and kids have been for school camps etc…but I have never and it is the perfect unplugged place to go with so much wildlife and nature to enjoy…Have just had a trip of of lifetime to USA but Kangaroo Island is my longing…….

  22. I blog a few times a week and have the weekends off. I’m also involved in other websites and do those as well so my weeks are full of blogging and tweeting and what not, but something I found a few years ago, I must take the weekend, or at least Sunday and half Saturday off. Otherwise you never have the time to do anything else or enjoy the world. Just a few weeks ago I bought an iPad and iPod touch, and with a wireless router in the house I can get online with those, although I’m slow in getting used to them and incorporating them into my routine.

    As for Kangaroo Island, I’m from Adelaide, I personally say don’t bother, but it’s up to you.

  23. Neshia D says:

    What an interesting idea. It’s funny to think that not that long ago we did without all these technologies and did just fine and now that we have them we find it difficult to leave them alone for a few minutes, let alone hours. I don’t think I would be able to do it for 24 hours. Great post!

  24. Janet O. says:

    I’ve been doing quite a bit of info searching of late- treadle sewing, quilting, gardening,, etc. I don’t have many gadgets, no fancy phones. I don’t think I’d have any problem being disconnected. I’d love to be on a beach with a good book, maybe some snorkeling, exploring local gardens. Australia is my dream destination.

  25. I unplug regularly. I call it my “Amish Break”. lol Sometimes I’ll take two days at a time. My favorite place to go and unplug is my ocean, the beaches of the Pacific. The sounds of the waves help me unwind like nothing else does.

    Hugs to you Sarah!
    PS I would totally join you, but my daughter is graduating from college on the 28th, and I KNOW I will be using my phone to coordinate with family members that day.

  26. alison says:

    Count me in for April 28. Kangaroo Island is already on my “To Do” list. I have a thing about islands for some unknown reason.

    Sarah, have you seen that SA Tourism TV ad? I loved it so much I googled to find who does the ukelele music and song in the background. The song is sung by Eddy Vedder from Pearl Jam. I went out and bought 2 of his CDs, one which includes the SA Tourism song.

    Talking of islands. You must check out Lord Howe Island. Pure magic and it gets NO MOBILE COVERAGE no matter how high you climb up My Lidgbird or Mt Gower. We went a few years ago. A maximum of 400 tourists were allowed on the island at a time, you walk or pushbike everywhere. There’s canoeing, surfing, snorkling (pay via honesty box), mountain climbing, golf, monthly movies run by volunteers at the community hall, food co-op, 2 general stores, a couple of very good restaurants, takeaways, bowlo, beauty therapy, a couple of girlie shops, glass bottom boat trips, mini bus island tours, several beaches, museum talks on the wildlife etc etc. One of my favourite things was that both tours I did the tour guide bought morning or afternoon tea which included a home made cake!!! :) Our island mini bus tour concluded at the tour guide’s verandah for afternoon tea. I have never enjoyed a cup of real tea in a tea pot so much.



  27. Selby says:

    Sounds superb!:) funny you mention kangaroo island- I was born in South Australia and one of my fav photos ever is of me in a blue parka at age 2.5ish ( about the same age my son is now) on kangaroo island on a windy day, wild n free. I’ve thought a lot about that photo recently & how it calls me and how I want to take my son there – small world huh?!:)

  28. Sounds like a good idea. Does that landline telephone on your desk really still work? they were so easy to hold under the ear on the shoulder and do other things!!!!

  29. Charissa says:

    I adore the style and design of this beach cottage. Fantastic and has a bright idea. Thanks for sharing your great idea.

  30. Tina says:

    I am afraid I am a working girl, 9-5 kind of thing going on, in front of spreadsheets all day, skyping to old blightly now, but otherwise no technology is no problem, my mobile has batteries bigger than concords!

  31. Suzan says:

    Sounds like a good thing as I hate how much technology intrudes into my evenings.

  32. Count me in !! I am marking my calendar ! It would be great to blog about, and get more bloggers to do the same. Great ‘mental health’ day. I am going to read books in my treehouse for an entire day. Maybe listen to rain. And eat cupcakes. And knit. And eat more cupcakes .
    Thanks for the great idea !!!!
    Lynne xx

  33. Bonnie says:

    Interesting…I’m not sure I can go a full 24 hours without ANY technology. I’ll have to see if I can. I just came off from a one week facebook & TV fast. One full week – no issue with the TV but did have some withdrawal issues with FB. A full day of nothing? Wow.

  34. April 28th. it is. I’ll get a lot of gardening done that day C:

  35. Scot207 says:

    What a lovely shot of a beach, it’s beautiful!

  36. marsha says:

    we went to yellowstone national park in the US, there is no cell phone service there or internet or tv. it was very nice, you actually enjoyed the sights and sounds of nature. this one place we stayed at actually had moose that would come down from the mountains and walk around and not let the people scare them. they were fun to watch. although you really did not want to get too close to them.

  37. This looks so inviting to study in!! love love

  38. Michelle says:

    Great idea Sarah…..we already have computer free days here every Sunday but admittedly I will check in on fb on my phone to see what’s going on with friends and family but other than that there’s no computers on Sundays…….I just took the Easter weekend (four long days) off as well as this is was the most time off my hubby has had in ages and we wanted to do things together as a family being that it’s the start of school holidays here in W.A…….I will admit it was hard having those four days off and while hubby doesn’t mind me blogging I try to do it mostly while he’s at work so we can spend the evenings together as he works such long days…..

    I will join you on the 28th but can’t unplug the mobile as I have a son with Autism so if I go out he needs to be able to reach me and me him…..but everything else I’m happy to unplug and I think we’ll go spend the day at my fave beach here in W.A….Meelup Beach in Dunsborough……we try to get there as often as we can…..I have heard wonderful things about Kangaroo Island but never been so please let us know how it was….

  39. Mary K says:

    Hmmm…though it sounds good – it also sounds challenging, not going to be easy – we’re all SO connected all of the time! Beach, lakeshore, open county (as long as it’s warm enough to be outside) – hard to choose. And, like anther poster, may not be able to do it on the 28th as my husband and I will be traveling – But I WILL commit to unplugging.

    Mary in MN

  40. Jasmine says:

    I think this is a great idea! Does this mean I can’t go to the gym because technically the machines I use run on electricity? ;-)

    x Jasmine

  41. Carina says:

    I’m in. Though I’m going to put it in my dairy to do on the 26th – a pre-scheduled meeting requires the phone on the 28th.

    I’ll be just finishing my 24hours of silence here in France as you get ready to kick it off in Australia.

  42. Ellie says:

    Ha! I had a few days of unplugged over Easter as I had flu and hadn’t the energy to read anything or do anything. Which is why I am catching up on your blog now. But I think I will join your unplugged day ….can’t do any harm, can it? ;~

  43. Chris L says:

    I’ll be in that – I actually did it last week too but only for the computer, I still had phone calls – it was very liberating not to be on call all the time and feeling compelled to see who’s online :)

  44. sarita says:

    I’ve taken this one step further – I deactivated my Facebook account! Wow no FB anymore! Have not missed it!

  45. Chantal says:

    Good idea Sarah!! I really love to stay connected, but feel it is needed to unplug! I keep on telling my son (13 yo) that I think he’s addicted (PS3/PC/iPhone/iPad)… but to be completely honoust… I’m afraid that I am too!
    I would love to sit on a beach and read a book (without being ‘disturbed’ by the need to use my phone, either to call/text/facebook/twitter/instagram…) for this unplugged challenge!
    On April 28 I will be travelling (at least 12 hours in the plane, so don’t know if that counts…), but I might take another 24 hours to see if I can survive an unplugged day!!

    Good luck & thanks for the challenge!!

  46. Paula says:

    I just started reading your blog and the photos are really amazing. It’s so heart warming to look at.

    I’ll look forward to more photos and posts from you.

    I’m officially an avid reader of your posts. :)

  47. Rosalie says:

    Ok,I start today:1st of June!
    I’ll try to do it each Friday..for me,it’s like the “shabbat”of the Jews..a little more time to meditate or enjoy my family..or to draw!or to paint some vintage chairs!!
    I like your blog so much!
    Sorry for my bad english..I’m french!!
    I hope That someday I could live near the beach!