Monday, September 26, 2011

Unplugging the family

For a while now I've let my children have far too much screen time when it comes to computers and TV. In a effort to cut down on this I disconnected our Foxtel, success number 1. The kids now watch far less TV then they used to, maybe a few hours a week now (more on the holidays).

But in doing this the children (especially my older 2) turned towards playing their laptops, for hours and hours on end. It is really amazing how self absorbed they have become! I would often hear yelling at their younger siblings to 'Get Away from Me', or 'Get out of My Room' when they were absorbed in their games. Getting chores done has been a nightmare! Constant reminding and nagging to get their chores started has been the bane of my existence! 'Oh just a minute, I need to finish this game' and 'Oh, I didn't hear you' have been rolling off the tongue far to frequently.

I have noticed that none of the older kids have any patience with each other, quick to snap rather then ask politely when getting their message across.

I have to admit, I have let it go on way too long, perhaps because it was easier then dealing with the moaning about being 'bored' and it created a sense of 'peace' with the older ones not squabbling as often. And with Braith taking up so much of my attention being a difficult baby, I often turned a blind eye to the amount of time they spent on the computers.

Well now I'm fed up with my children acting as enemies and I'm bringing the family harmony back! I'm also setting an example by being on the computer a lot less. The children are not allowed on their computers for a week and if there is more family harmony then they will be allowed limited, 1/2hr per day times on their computers.

This week so far has been really successful. I won't say that their behaviour has been 5 star, the 1st morning that it sunk in that there would be no computers, they moaned and whined and fought with each other for a good 5 hrs or so. I guess this is to be expected when 6 kids suddenly realise they all live together and have to get along! lol!

After the initial shock they kids decided to take up some of my suggestions on creating some artwork. Callum and Silas worked together on making a pirate ship, all of the ideas from Callum himself. I was rather pleased and delighted with both his creativity and patience when it came to creating a project with his 4 yr old brother!(The girls kept themselves busy creating shops and doll houses)

They then came up with the idea of heading down the street to pick Mulberries from a tree the big boys has spied a few days earlier while delivering pamphlets. They came back with heaps and heaps, and after a quick call to Nana it was decided we would make Mulberry Pie :)

And the pie crust is a little bit crazy,but hey, it was 1st time ever making pie crust :)

We then finished off the day by watching a family movie and indulging in chocolate and hot cuppas :) I totally wish for more days like these, its going to take practice, and I'll have to lead by example, but in the end it will be more then worth it. I know that, deep down, everyone loves one another, but being a family means more then that for me. I want everyone to treasure each other and the time we have together. And yes I know they're children, and not every moment will be or should be rose tinted, I just want my family to feel like a family. The big family I didn't know I wanted but am blessed to be able to call mine :)


  1. I love this post!!! I may have to follow your lead. Don't worry you definitely aren't the only family to be living like that, with too much screen time and kids at one another, meet another one right here!!

    I am so sick of the kids jumping down each other's throats for tiny little things, drives me nuts! School holidays start next week here and I may just do as you have done and see if I can create some more family harmony!!

    Thank you for the inspiration.