Recently I took care of a friend’s baby and toddler. It was lots of fun, though admittedly also tedious and boring at times. I managed well enough even as I tried my best to resist checking my phone for new messages and emails while the kids were in my care…
Children and Television Posts
My husband, Bob, and I sent our son, Casey, off to college last month. We spent weeks preparing ourselves for the big moment, talking to other parents and getting lots of good advice. I knew it was important not to fall apart, but when the time came, that’s exactly what I did. I stood in front of my son with a torrent of tears streaming down my face while he tried to cheer me up, all the while barely able to contain his excitement about the adventure ahead of him. After giving him one more hug, Bob and I headed out of the dorm where I promptly burst into tears again.
It’s February and this is my first blog for 2011. (Who knows when I’ll write the next one?) I’ve been busy working diligently on my second book and going on adventures with my son, Casey. In my last blog, I mentioned that Casey became a finalist in the 2010 Canon Photography in the Parks contest. He ended up winning first prize, and as a result he received a new camera and photo printer. Since then he’s been planning our summer vacation to Glacier National Park. As always, he’s in search of exciting opportunities to expand his photo gallery.
For years the American Academy of Pediatrics has been saying that television isn’t good for babies and toddlers, and now, amazingly enough, Disney seems to have gotten the message. Starting this month, they’re offering refunds for their Baby Einstein videos. Of course Disney was pressured to do this, but if it helps parents learn the truth about so-called educational television for babies, I applaud the action no matter how it came about.
Recently I was on a radio show in Portland called Parenting Unplugged Radio. Naturally I love the title of this show, but it’s the hosts of the show, Laura and Todd Mansfield, who really make it a success. They made me laugh, they made me sigh, and then they somehow talked me into singing the beginning of the “Brady Bunch” song. (Yes, I still know it.)
I am sitting on the deck of an old log cabin facing the San Francisco Peaks outside of Flagstaff, Arizona. My husband spent nearly every summer of his childhood here. He and his siblings didn’t have television. They had books and board games and horses and forts they built from fallen branches. They also had parents who gave them the chance to run free—to explore acres and acres of prairie land, to wander through Aspen groves and climb nearby mountains.