Friday, August 10, 2012

We're Doing It!

Unlike other things I start and am unable to finish, this whole no TV thing is actually working.  Kind of.  I'm not above turning on a movie for the boys once in a while, but we have to go all the way to the basement to do it, so that makes it more work.  And Scott and I have been watching the Olympics after the boys go to bed, so there's that.

But the cool thing is that the boys are actually having a good time without TV.  I've created a cozy reading spot in the playroom and Ben loves reading in it.  In fact, the other day I asked him if he wanted to come play Grocery Store with me, and he said "well, maybe in a bit, after I'm done reading."  I was totally fine with that.

The fighting between the boys has lessened, and I attribute it to both the TV being gone and my intervention.  My M.O. used to be to just sit back and let them figure out their issues.  As long as nobody was getting hurt, I thought, I need not interfere.  They needed to figure this stuff out on their own.

But they weren't figuring it out.

Now, when I hear things start to escalate, I go in and tell Ben that it is not acceptable to yell at people and that he needs to use a calm voice to tell his brother what it is that he needs or wants from him.  I've also found that making them sit together, holding hands, for five minutes helps.

Things are coming around in this house, I can feel it.

Now, off to break up the first fight of the morning...

Thursday, August 2, 2012

This is Tough!

I didn't think life without TV would be so rough, but we are really struggling around here!  It is very difficult to not cave and turn the TV on when I just need a few minutes' peace.  It is also very difficult to not watch the Olympics (seriously, whose great idea was it to start this experiment in the middle of the Olympics?), or Big Brother, or even just some random thing on the History Channel for the sole purpose of vegging.  Yesterday was an exceptionally rough day for the boys, and I have something to admit:

I caved yesterday.

I could not handle the arguing, the whining, the tantrums, and the general disrespect in the house, so I cheerfully declared that it was time for a movie!

I had Ben choose a movie (Twenty Trucks.  He hasn't watched that since he was three.), and down we went to watch it in the basement, where our old dinosaur TV is hooked up to its rabbit ears.  It's also hooked up to the X-box, which plays DVDs. 

God had another plan, though.  The DVD was scratched up and wouldn't play.  But did I take that as a sign and decide that we (they) weren't going to watch a movie?  Noooooooooooo.  I told Ben to go find another movie. 

He came back with Prodigal Pig, a cute little cartoon about a pig who wants to take his inheritance early from Farmer Brown and leave the farm to go be a big-shot musician in the city.  It has a great moral message, and even better, it automatically repeats itself!

Friends, we watched that movie until LUNCHTIME!  And by we, I still mean they.  I did things like put dinner in the crockpot and check Facebook and play with the baby when she got up from her nap.  It was glorious!

I have another secret....

Scott and I watched the Olympics in bed last night.

Eeeeekkk!!  I felt like a child breaking the rules.  It was exhilarating! 

I might just cave again today.  Maybe.  If I can't think of enough creative things for the boys to do.

We'll see.