Editorially Yours


Michele

Michele Pesula Kuegler is the founder of PeKu Publications and chief foodie at Think Tasty. She runs this one-woman show focusing on creating new recipes to delight her family, friends, and herself.


TV Time Can Be Family Time

by Michele Pesula Kuegler on August 12th, 2013
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rsz_televisionWhen my kids were little, I carefully supervised their television viewing.  How much they watched, what they watched, when they watched. Television before breakfast was a treat for sleepovers at Grandma’s and Grandpa’s.  Post-dinner family time involved reading books or playing a game.  Of course, back then they probably had only an hour or so between dinner and sleepy time.

Now, my kids are teens, and things have changed.  Sure, I keep tabs on their viewing habits, but I give them more rein.  As a high school senior, if you’re able to eat breakfast and watch Mike and Mike while doing so and get yourself to school on time, that’s fine with me.  The gap between dinner and bedtime is greater, so if you’re homework’s done (and your grades are good), it’s fine to relax with some screen time.

However, what I find most interesting about this change from parenting young children to older teens is the way in which we spend time together.  We were on a mini-vacation this past weekend.  After spending all of Sunday attending different events, we returned to our hotel at 9:00. I mentioned that the season finale of Next Food Network Star had just started but that we were recording it at home.  My daughter suggested we watch it together.  So, the four of us got comfortable and watched the show together, making predictions, hoping for our favorite contestants, and cheering when the winner was announced.

I find that watching a tv show with our teens is one of the better ways to connect.  When a commercial airs (or someone pauses the DVR), we talk about the show and, quite often, real world implications.  No, this isn’t the only time that my family sits together, but having a media diversion seems to open dialogues that might not otherwise be broached.

If you had asked me fifteen years ago what I thought about bonding in front of a television, I am certain I would have dismissed it quite judgmentally.  Now, as a parent, with more experience under my belt, I know that connecting comes in different times and places, so I embrace it where I can.


Michele

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