Mommy vs. Elmo

We have no television in our home. Not having a t.v. was a conscious decision Luke and I made years ago, because we know when we do have a t.v. we spend a lot of time watching people live their lives (or acting like they are) and not living our own. I know a lot of people who have t.v. who are amazing at controlling how much they watch- I am not one of those people. After about 15 minutes, pretty much every show seems interesting to me, "oooh I've never seen an old woman fight a koala bear before..." etc.

We do, however, have a computer, which in some ways is considerably worse than television. On the computer you can seek out stuff you actually like to watch and then you can watch it for HOURS! Enter Sesamestreet.org.

I love Sesame Street, I think they have amazing kids programming. I thought it was so amazing, it wouldn't hurt to let Judah watch a video or two of Elmo playing the piano, or an adorable kid tickling Grover. Not only would it not hurt, it may actually help his brain grow- I mean, they count to 10 every 25 seconds!

 Judah was mildly interested at first, he would groove a bit to Elmo's Song, he would smile when Grover got tickled. Then he got engaged, he would laugh when the Muppets laughed, sing his own adorable songs when they sang and then happily say goodbye after about five minutes. 
Then he got older,  wiser and ADDICTED! 

He wakes up and the first thing he wants to do is watch Sesame Street. He can hardly turn his head away from the video to eat his amazing pineapple snacks made by his awesome parents. He watches a video for about 4 seconds before deciding whether it's worthy of a full view. If it's not he grunts and points and says "dee" (please) until you switch it to a far more agreeable Monster song and dance number.

Luke and I looked at each other the other day and thought, "We have to stop the madness!" I mean, we don't want one of these 5 year olds who can sit in front of a screen for hours on end. We want a kid who begs to go outside to discover a new species of bugs,  who makes weird mixtures in the kitchen, who creates huge messy art projects, and gets lost in books. So, armed with our parental dictatorial power, we've cut him off of the screen- cold turkey. 

There were no videos for Judah-Mommy day (Friday is our day for just the two of us) and there will be no videos all weekend. On Monday, when he goes off to my mom's for the day, he may watch one or two, but I'm ok with that, after all being way more awesome than parents is what grandparents are for.

For now though, I'm happy with the decision we've made. When you aren't losing yourself to the screen, you get to do awesome stuff like ...

Playing peekaboo in the curtains,

giving mom bare bum piano concerts,

wearing adult boots while playing with Swedish toys,

making forts with dad 
and even...

sneaking off by yourself to read a good book.

Have a wonderful screen free (at least in part) night everybody!!


  1. Nice post, Jennie! I have struggled with the idea of letting my future children watch television...I want them to grow up like me, climbing trees, making forts...etc. It's so hard to do that when there seems to be media everywhere. Good job with unplugging. It probably helps if you do it when they're young :) Ashleigh

  2. Judah sounds a lot like me! :) Replace "Sesame Street" with "Big Bang Theory" and "Project Runway"! I wonder if my parents had cut me off at an early age...

  3. We struggle with the TV thing. I think I'm actually way more addicted to TVO's children's programs than Kale...

  4. first of all, i want that sweater for toby lol. Second, we had issues with tv/computer too. Toby likes wathcing youtubes of backhoes digging, but i never seem to able to find 'the right one' so alot of complaining happens. up on the tv we used to watch kids cbc every morning and play while it was on, but then he started WATCHING and then getting mad when a show ended and demanding 'again'. so... my laptop 'runs out of batteries' alot. and the tv 'needs to have a rest and sleep' alot. and mostly when he askes for a show i just shrug and say it's not on, even if its a tape we have, and sometimes it's ok and other times there;s a fit - in which case i say hes not being very polite so we;re going to leave the room and do soemthing else. It's hard not to give in too often!!