Tuesday, November 25, 2008

I Can't Stop Myself!

I know the first Sunday in Advent is 30 Nov. I planned to wait until THEN to upload a new look.

We almost always decorate for Christmas the day after Thanksgiving.....I decided to move the new look up to Black Friday.

BUT people on my block have CHRISTMAS LIGHTS up already. What can I say? I'm terrible about waiting for Christmas Surprises...... so I had the new look ready to go on my test blog. I decided to do it tonight. NOW something is up with blogger and it won't let me change text fonts/colors and sizes....so I'll have to work on that tomorrow.....oh well. ::snort::

©2008 D.R.G.

Giving Thanks ~ Day 25!

~I'm thankful that another full day is coming to a close.

~I'm thankful that Stacia loves to be my "travel buddy" on all my errands. I was in and out a LOT today, driving one and the other to various activities. Stacia loves to drive with me. We got home once and she said, "Thank you, Mommy, for that fun trip!" Ah.

~I'm thankful that we have a 4 day weekend coming up.

©2008 D.R.G.

Average Family?

As I drove home from dropping Nolan off at the Nutcracker, I heard that a new Neilson study shows that the "average American family" watches 8 hours and some minutes a day of television.

Really? That seems like a lot of time. I suppose some of it would be joint viewing, building family and such....but wow...8 hours a DAY? Do you all think this is an inflated number?

Growing up we didn't have television on the mission station, in the barrio, or at the dorms at Faith Academy (high school). I didn't have television during college either. I thought back to our furlough years and I'd say we'd watch 30 - 60 minutes of cartoons in the a.m. as we ate breakfast....and probably 3 - 4 hours in the evening.....still not close to 8 hours.

Years ago we turned cable off in our family. We did this as the values coming into our home were not values to which we wanted to daily expose our young children. We switched to a VCR player and videos. When we moved here we put that TV/VCR into storage (and have since given it away). We had discovered that we were spending too much time watching "good" things on television. We now have a projector and screen. We do watch movies, Waltons, an occasional Presidential debate or sports game....but it involves setting up a screen, hooking up the projector etc. We made it a TREAT rather than daily fare. We have also learned to limit "screen time" - in the sense of Play Station and computer time. Why?

Not because we desire to be out of touch with our culture. I believe THAT is a straw tiger. We have been told by other pastors that if you don't watch current sit coms, R rated movies etc you will be out of touch and unable to communicate the gospel to this generation/culture. I don't buy it. It seems impossible to me to escape the culture and its values...Internet, radio, newspapers, movies....Surely I can teach/share the gospel and family values without watching nightly trash.

We didn't set out to be peculiar. We simply knew that Mike and I needed to be more intentional in relating with our children during family time. Television (and movies VCR) made it too easy for us to sit in the same room but never RELATE. We never seem to have enough time to discuss all that is waiting to be discussed, to play all the games that are waiting, to explore all the adventures in each new location.....and we rarely miss the television these days.

Today I'm wondering if the "average" family is really spending EIGHT hours a day, EVERY day watching television. Even if you watch only oldies and "good" things.....it still seems like a lot of valuable time that could be spent building relationships as parents/children/spouses.....

So - what do you think? Is 8 hours a realistic number? How much do you think your family watches a day? Is that an amount of time that you are comfortable with? I'd say we watch about 1 - 3 hours a week - max. This would be the Family Movie Night (Tim Hawkins is a favorite) and does not happen every week. Yep, 1 -3 hours weekly, MAX. That works for us. There are times I'd like to watch more....there are weekends when I think we should never have pulled out the screen, but for the most part it seems to work.

©2008 D.R.G.