Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Un Plugging

Kory and I have never really watched a lot of tv. We passed this habit along to our kids. It's been great. All of our kids even Emily now prefer to be outside than inside. I use to turn the tv on at 8 am. The kids would watch The Little Einsteins and then at 8:30 Mickey Mouse Club House. They would be GLUED to the tv. This gave me enough time to do the breakfast dishes, shower and get ready for the day. At 9:00 the tv would go off and it generally didn't get turned back on until 5 which was when I watched the news.
With the cold weather we've been having lately along with my muddy front/back yard it's been really hard on all of us, but especially the kids. Hunter started turning the tv on about 6 am when he got up instead of playing quietly in his room. I wasn't quite ready to roll out of bed so I was ok with this but of course the tv stayed on until 9 am. It has slowly progressed to more and more cartoons. When they don't like the cartoon playing they'll turn the Wii on. When they are tired of that they'll try the cartoons again or get on the computer. For the past couple of days I felt like the tv and computer have been on most of the day. When I do turn it off they cry, throw a tissy fit and argue with me about it. The hole time it's off they're bugging me to turn it back on again. So this morning I decided I was going to stick with it and go back to our old schedule but.... Hunter was up at 5:30 and I was too tired to argue so the TV was on from 5:30 to 7 when I made them turn it off to get ready for school. I did not allow them to watch cartoons while eating their breakfast (another habit that has been formed). It was kinda nice. We talked during breakfast. Breakfast went by faster making them be completely ready for school earlier than usual, and we left the house calmly and on time this morning.
But what a HORRIBLE afternoon we've had. I wouldn't let them turn the tv on after pre-school and all Hunter and Maddie did was whine, whine and whine. Hunter even had a friend come over for a few hours. They played for about 15 minutes and then I let them turn the WII on. After a few minutes of the WII I realized they had shut it off and were watching cartoons. Hunter was not very happy that I made him turn the cartoons off and go play with his toys while he had a friend to play with. The second his friend left he wanted to turn the tv on again. I stuck to it and the tv has not been on since this morning before school. I was shocked to see how bored they thought they were. They REFUSED to play with their toys all day.
So tonight at dinner I announced to the family that TONIGHT we are unplugging the TV, DVD player, WII and the computer for the next 7 days. You should have seen the tears from Hunter and Maddie. I told them that Daddy and I were going to be doing the same thing. I don't think Daddy appreciated me volunteering him to go along with my plan (it's baskettball season), but after spending a few hours with the kids tonight and seeing their reactions to this unplugging idea he is willing to go along with it. The kids wanted to watch a movie after dinner but instead I pulled out a few games. We played Memory and Chutes and Ladders till scripture study and then it was bed time. Once the kids got into the board games they had fun and forgot about their movie. We had a good evening together.
Wish us luck. After the afternoon we've had I am not looking forward to tommorrow. I will bolg about our un plugging experience in a week. Till then...


Camille C. said...

great idea. Jonathan would be more for it than me. I have a major computer addiction. Carlaya loves tv, but plays well if I ask her to. I do need to cut back their morning watching though. Noah phases in/out, he's not big on it yet, I should keep it that way.
As kids our tv broke and my mom wouldn't let my dad buy a new one cause we all watched too much. She said if we all went 1 year without tv, we'd each get $100. It was hard at first but we got used to it. NO TV at all for 6-7 months when suddenly my dad broke down and bought one without telling any of us. My mom wasn't happy and us kids didn't get our $100! I don't know that I could do a week without, but we could definetly cut back....I'll try. Good luck to you!

Schultz Family said...

This is great! Kevin and I got rid of cable so we have no TV, in fact if it wasnt for Josh's quiet time = 1 movie of his choice then I would simply throw the tube away. But it really is nice to find other things to do. What is nice though is that if you do have a fav show you like, you can watch it on the internet, with about 5 commercials saving you time and you can pause it an play it later if needed. Its out very own TIVO!
I am so proud of you, you were always so good about being consistent with your kids. And they are well behaved because of it.