Friday, June 30, 2006

Active Parenting

Summer has cast it's lazy haze over the Ecohousehold. More and more days I found myself doing a task and then basking in the glow of the computer monitor. The kids would play for a few minutes, then ask for a snack, then ask to watch TV. I'd turn on the TV for them and head out to leisurely hang our laundry up to dry in the sun. Yesterday the kids watched sooo much TV. Between me still feeling sick and recovering themselves, 5 loads of laundry and other household tasks, they were captive to the magic box all day long. Finally I pulled the plug. Literally. I realized I'd been outside more than them. So I pulled up my boot straps, took apart the whole mess of wires and cords, and hauled it all back down to the basement.

In retrospect, perhaps my decision was a bit hasty. I ran errands with the kids all day to help us along, but we did manage to get through the whole day with no TV. Still, when my netflix DVD came in the mail today, I decided to watch in my laptop. When that didn't work, well.... BRING BACK THE TV! PLEASE! JUST A FEW MORE DAYS, THEN I'LL STOP WATCHING. PLEEEAAASSSSE! And this is why it had to go NOW. I actually watched TV only once or twice a week, but the kids watch it every day. That had to stop.

While we waited for Beo to come home--in that akward time between naps and dinner that TV always fills--I sat down with the kids and we played a simple memory game. OK, I saw it on Supernanny, but here I was putting it to good use. We just set up a few small toys on a stool, the kids closed their eyes, and I took an object away. They opened their eyes and tried to figure out what was missing. They absolutely loved it! I'm going to get a kiddy pool this week (gauranteed to make me watch them like a psychotically paranoid hawk), we'll paint sheets (hang an old white sheet on the clothesline, let the kids paint like crazy, then spray the sheet and kids down with a hose), read books, and just play. I'll be interested to see what kind of effect this has on the behavior of Sprout and Bird. I'm hoping it will be a positive one. If I can just keep my wits about me for a week... A week???


blueshakti said...

oh, you can totally do this! good for you for even trying, and even more for being so creative with things to do.

I wanna come over and play!!

Beo said...

Coming home Saturday to the kiddos gathered around the ottoman staring intently at 6 small toys-and then watching them find the missing one before I did-was awesome.

Mia-you're fantastic.

e4 said...

Great stuff, Mia.

They might like this simple card game called Set. It's easy to adapt to different age ranges (including adults).

Maddy Avena said...

I want to come play too with the sproutandbird family! I want to paint a sheet and jump in a kiddie pool....can I do it with my shirt off like I was 6?

Suzer said...

Parenting is the most rewarding work ever! Good for you getting rid of the T.V. Now if I could just convince my husband to do the same!