Sunday, April 27, 2008

Results of TV TurnOff Challenge

If I Had My Child To Raise Over Again

If I had my child to raise all over again,
I'd finger-paint more and point the finger less.
I would do less correcting and more connecting.
I'd take my eyes off my watch and watch more with my eyes.
I would care to know less and know to care more.
I'd take more hikes and fly more kites.
I'd stop playing seriously and seriously play.
I would run through more fields and gaze at more stars.
I'd do more hugging and less tugging.
I'd build self-esteem first and the house later.
I would be firm less often, and affirm much more.
I'd teach less about the love of power,
And more about the power of love.
-Diane Loomas

I'm so grateful for the people around me who make me understand the power of love and to continue challenging and upgrading my habits and the way I do things. It is because of them that I hope I am already doing the right things by my family... or headed on the right track anyway.

Last week, I had a vision of my future week. I imagined stress filled days, where all my 'work' went unfinished, when cooking for dinner time wouldn't happen and days when I would just be in a daze being my toddler's continuous entertainment central.
Those things never happened.

What I had instead was a very relaxed and truly lovely week. Although my husband and I enjoyed 2 movie nights and I was not able to let my son watch Muzzy after he used the word 'watch Muzzy' for the very first time, we did discover a lot of other fun activities: lots of fingerplays, listening to music and language CDs, cleaning the car (wow was this great entertainment for a wheel infatuated little boy!), amateur puppet shows and observing and delighting in the daily visits from our resident cardinals. I checked e-mail only twice a day and discovered that really is all I need. My son enjoyed playing with his toys while I exercised and I cooked when my son was entertaining himself. It really and unbelievably all worked out. The best part of this week was that I truly enjoyed just BEING: having the ability to be open to what my son wanted to do next, doing things on my list whenever he divulged in independent play and having a decent amount of time to not only be a homemaker but a wife to my dear husband. I had thought that my little man and my big man were both so thrilled to have my undivided attention all week - but looking back, I was probably the happiest for being able to give it.

The TV stays and I love e-mail, but my goal is to keep up what I discovered this week: how to keep 'bad' things (i.e. tantrums or not having enough quality time together) from happening by giving timely attention to what matters (i.e. stop whatever I'm doing and concentrate full heartedly instead on my priorities, what my son or husband wants from me, and return to my previous task afterward). It amazes me that such a simple change in what I would normally do can really save time and relieve any undue stress.

Thank you to Sherri and Aimee and their families for their support!

Books I enjoyed this week:
Natural Family Living by Peggy O'Mara, publisher of Mothering magazine
The No-Cry Discipline Solution by Elizabeth Pantley, author of The No-Cry Sleep Solution for Babies and for Toddlers and Preschoolers
The Parents' and Teachers' Guide to Helping Young Children Learn by Betty Farber

More Information:
No Impact Man - Interesting Statistics on Effect of TV on kids

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