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Old 03-29-2008, 10:36 PM   #1
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Smile All you tv free families, tell me what it's like.

We've thought about the whole no tv thing several times and have always come to the conclusion that we would have a tv to watch dvds and videos only. Of course this never ends up working and we end up watching tv especially at night when the kids are in bed. Usually me, dh goes to bed early and honestly I get really bored. Our local PBS channel is completely out now and the only way we can see it is if we switch to digital which the rest of the channels will be doing in a year. I really don't feel like I should have to buy extra equipment to watch tv so this might truly be the cut off for us. So I guess I'm wondering, do you still have a way to watch movies and what not? I know there are a lot of positive and educational movies and since we homeschool getting things of that nature may come in handy. So what do you do personally? How did you break off the tv? Do you ever miss it? Tell me everything.


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Old 03-29-2008, 10:50 PM   #2
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Re: All you tv free families, tell me what it's like.

We stopped our Satelite service over a year ago. I have to admit that I went through withdrawl for a month, and that scared me! To think that I could be addicted to a show! But that's why we cut it DH said something about me taking DS out one afternoon and then putting our DS to bed early so that he could watch certain shows, and I was like WHAT? We're letting the TV dictate our parenting??? There went the shows...
Since then we became Blockbuster Online members. For about $25 a month we get 3 movies at a time and turn them in at our Blockbuster store for new ones, like a free movie coupon (hence resetting the system to send us 3 more). We get 6-12 movies a week and get to pick what we want. No chance that DS can watch a commercial or show that we deem inappropriate (at least at our house). DS loves to pick out his 1-2 movies a week and it's amazing how much time you have when you stop watching shows at certain times. Many shows are available on DVD and there are even some online (ABC has the most current shows available and they air the day after the regular TV air date. CWTV has some as well as CBS).
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Old 03-29-2008, 10:54 PM   #3
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Re: All you tv free families, tell me what it's like.

I've thought about it, but no, haven't taken that step. The past 2 days my kids have lost their TV priviledges for not coming when I called them because they were wrapped up in a program, so last night was the first night in ages that we haven't watched TV after dinner. It was weird. Didn't know what to do with them at first. But we ended up playing games, DH pulled out his guitar and we sang camp songs, and read a couple books to them.

We did the same thing tonight with a bath and a grandparent visit thrown in there.

Maybe starting with a week of no TV? After a week, try to go another week. Etc. Until you find that you are okay with no TV. My friends have a TV that they only pull out for special shows--big sports games, to watch a movie, stuff like that. I wouldn't necessarily throw it out or anything, but maybe unplug it or move it to your storage area so it's not convenient to just sit down and turn on.
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Old 03-30-2008, 09:40 AM   #4
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Re: All you tv free families, tell me what it's like.

We went TV free for about 3 years, and then added it back with DVR for the last year. Now we're going back to mostly tv free.

It really wasn't as bad as one may think, turning it off. We checked out lots of audiobooks from the library, played more games and went outside more often...but the tv wasn't missed. When we did watch a movie it was on the computer. Youtube provided a lot of entertainment during those years.

And then we brought tv back. Rather, we turned it on in the morning, scheduled our shows to be recorded (2 for everyone per day), and turned it back off. In the afternoon, the kid shows were watched, and when I got home in the evening the adult shows were watched. In fact, my 9yo got so used to dvr that the few times he did watch something 'live' he got frustrated that he had to sit through the commercials! That was my main aim, really, to keep the commercialism from such a young audience, so it worked for us.
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Old 03-30-2008, 10:18 AM   #5
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Re: All you tv free families, tell me what it's like.

Need your advice...DH would actually be HAPPY if we got rid of our tv. I would certainly miss my daily 15 mins. of Good Morning America and my weekly SUPERNANNY, (great parenting tips) but otherwise I would eventually adjust. The PROBLEM is my mom, who comes to keep my kids every other week and stays for 3-4 days. We are so thankful that she comes to keep our kids, but she is a TOTAL TV addict, and basically keeps it on much of the day just out of habit. She's not always watching, but I guess she likes the noise. She's pretty good about only letting our toddler watch Sprout (kids shows) or PBS stuff, and he doesn't watch much with her, but he still ends up watching some of Idol, or whatever reality show is on in the evenings.

How should we handle this? Any tactful solutions?
I was thinking of only having satellite service in the guest room where she stays.

What suggestions do you all have? (I know she'd complain if we moved the tv out of the family room, but eventually she'd have to adapt. She loves her grandkids too much to NOT keep coming and seeing them.)
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Old 03-30-2008, 01:03 PM   #6
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Re: All you tv free families, tell me what it's like.

We have been basically tv for many years now. We do own a tv and dvd player that we keep in the guest room (that would be my suggestion for the pp and grandma) It's been so long that I don't actually miss tv at all and I think we just make better use of our time.
When the new baby was born I did let my 2 year old watch 1 episode of old school sesame street a day when we trapped inside without a car and I was still trying to cope and figure out how to survive. We've basically got our groove on now and dvds are just for when someone is sick or the occasional movie for mom and dad on Sunday nights.
I guess I'm not much help but am basically saying that you adapt and fill up your life with books, games, radio activities etc and you soon forget all about those shows you used to love. Give it a try and you probably be pleasantly surprised.
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Old 03-30-2008, 01:15 PM   #7
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Re: All you tv free families, tell me what it's like.

I am not sure when I would have TIME to watch TV! My day seems busy enough the way it is.

We have a TV/VCR combo set up in the corner of the kitchen. (Can't get any TV stations on it), the girls watch videos on it, but usually not even one a day. We get some from the library, have some at home. Sometimes if DH is gone, we will crawl up on our bed and watch a video together. Occasionally, maybe once every month or two, DH and I will rent a DVD and watch it on the computer in our room after the girls have gone to bed.

So, what do we do with our time?? The girls play with their toys, dress up, make tents, etc or play outside in the yard, we like to read books, I need to cut back on my computer time, I sew, do laundry, house cleaning, dishes, cooking, etc. Some days I have music CD's or radio programs playing.

Really, I don't know where we would add TV into our lives, and we don't feel like there is much value in what is shown even in the commericals. When DH comes home from work he plays with the kids, we all have dinner together at the table.

Personally, I hate going to someone's house and the TV is going all the time while you are trying to visit. If Grandma wants to come visit, she will survive without TV!!! She can play with the grandkids and read them stories!!
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Old 03-30-2008, 02:44 PM   #8
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Re: All you tv free families, tell me what it's like.

I grew up without tv because we lived so far into the boondocks that they didn't deliver cable out our way. I think it lead to my creativity as a child.

I think when I was 17 we finally got cable, still it was no big deal really because I was used to not watching tv.

My husband and I the past 4 years haven't had tv, until this september. We got sattelite. I have to admit I really like it, for the shows like survivor and stuff. I only have dialup or honestly I'd just watch the episodes on the internet instead.

my hubby is a HUGE sports fan so we have the tv.

but my point is, if you cut off the tv tomorrow in our house, I'm sure I'd miss my shows but its not a big deal, but that's probably because more than 1/2 my life I didn't have tv!
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Old 03-30-2008, 04:11 PM   #9
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Re: All you tv free families, tell me what it's like.


we have a dvd player but no cable or anything. we haven't even used the dvd player in the past 2 months. we listen to npr and catholic radio online a lot though.

i love the lack of noise but miss er our house is far more peaceful without tv.

my only problem is that we wouldn't have tv if something like sept 11th happened...we would want tv back then.
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Old 03-30-2008, 10:53 PM   #10
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Re: All you tv free families, tell me what it's like.

DH and I both grew up with little to no cable. When I was pg with dd we had it only because I didn't want to get bored. but we had it turned off when she was 6mo to cut expenses. Truthfully we don't miss it at all. We can watch our shows we like online without the commercials. TV is full of so much crap these days, not to mention the "news". Everytime we are at a friend's house with TV we realize that the only things we are missing are countless hours of wasted time!
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