Tuesday, May 09, 2006
TV Turnoff Week
Zoe recently participated in TV Turnoff Week. She was required to watch 4 hours or less of tv, which earned her a certificate of achievement, a free deli roll at Subway, and the satisfaction of accomplishing a goal. This was pretty easy considering we don't have tv in our home. It was a decision that Matt and I made almost 7 years ago when we moved into our "new" home. We had a tv/vcr combo that we watched movies on occasionally, but when that broke, we didn't have a tv at all for a long time. Then a few years ago, I decided I wanted to start exercising again, which meant that I wanted a tv/dvd combo so I could workout doing aerobics at home. When we got the tv, we already had cable tv with our cable internet service, so we hooked it up for Thanksgiving day to watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade...that was always something I missed doing on Thanksgiving without a tv. But I was disappointed when I watched the parade and saw half naked women and listened to some songs that thankfully my children couldn't understand the words to. I did however discover the PBS channel and my children enjoyed the programs and I enjoyed having a station that was kid-friendly with no commercials. I started watching some programs during the day, but it was always ruined when a commercial for a night-time drama would come on and my children's eyes would be glued to the tv watching someone get threatened by a gun or there would be a dead body shown. I didn't think my children needed to be exposed to that so I would end up turning the tv off. Plus, whenever the kids watched Nick Jr. they would come away wanting every toy that was advertized. Matt wasn't interested in the tv, so we got the cable tv part of our service disconnected. We didn't miss the tv...okay Matt and I did miss it in the fall when football was on, we like to watch the college games, but we liked the peaceful atmosphere without the tv better...at least I thought...this past fall Matt was tired of missing football, so we had our cable tv hooked up again for the football season. We got more channels this time because of course we needed ESPN to watch football so the children enjoyed watching animal planet, PBS, and Nick jr, and Matt and I got hooked on Dirty Jobs and some other shows. It was fun to watch tv, but it was those times that we would be watching football during the day on Saturday and commercials would come on that my children didn't need to see that I decided the tv needed to go again. We really didn't need the cost of the cable anyway. I like not having tv in our home. Matt wants to get our cable hooked up again in the fall, and maybe we'll look into tivo so we won't have to watch the commercials, but I really enjoy the atmosphere in our home when the tv stays off. So the reason I brought all of this up is because yesterday when I was listening to Dr. Laura she suggested a book to read ~ "Raising a G rated family in an X rated world: A survival guide from a family of nine." by Brent and Phelecia Hatch. As Dr. Laura was talking about the book, I realized that it is a lot easier to raise a G rated family when the tv is off. So I ask all of the moms out there, "What are your children watching?"...and a question for all my readers, "Could YOU go one week with 4 hours or less of tv?" Give it a try!