Ditching TV Among Other Things

In the last week of December Ron and I made a decision to discontinue our satellite service. This is something that I have been wanting to do for some time and I had suggested it more than once. But like most North Amercians, we are a teeny bit addicted to TV so Ron nixed the idea. I let it go. Then in the beginning of December it became his idea. Then of course it turned into a great idea. I was fully supportive of “his” idea but really didn’t think he would do it. First he started with the TVs. We had an embarrassing 6 flat screen TVs. One in nearly every room and even in the kids rooms (which we had always said we wouldn’t do). He started selling them off on Craigslist. I love Craigslist. Soon enough we had just one left. The he cancelled the satellite service. I was stunned and more than a little impressed. First he kicks gluten without even a flinch, then dairy, then aspartame, then TV and now he is working on soda in general. Since he has no other “real” vices he is on a fast track to becoming perfect. So you might be asking yourself, why would we do this? No, we’re not starving or having trouble paying the bills. This is really all just a part of a bigger picture. There is a lot to gain by ditching TV. First, the most obvious, is the cash you dish out every month for 7000 stations (and none of them are worth your time). Then there are the countless hours you can reclaim that can go to important things, like your family. We find we are spending more time as a family. We are playing games together, reading, making things, building things, going for walks, cooking, hanging out outside etc. Ron and I are talking more. Ron has started reading again. Him and I are both getting more sleep. Both of us had the habit of turning on the TV when we are tired to “just watch a couple of minutes.” Hours later we are still staring blankly at the TV. Then we wake up tired the next day and our patience is short with the kids and sometimes with each other. Then we’d miserable and lazy and only want to, guess what’s coming… watch TV. The TV was on in the background all the time whether or not anyone was watching. Since it has been off there is a beautiful calm in the house. I am enjoying the lack of the constant din. The girls are more often playing with each other. They are pretending, creating, learning and running. None of those things are done in front of the TV. We are spending more time outside and our attention is more fully on the present moment. How many times have I wished that the kids would just be quiet for a bit so I could hear or see something on the TV… TV is an escape, a drug, a diversion. I don’t want to be diverted from my life. I want to live it. At the end of our lives, will we look back and think “wow, I remeber that one TV show….”? We want our kids to have great memories of the time we spent together. Memories aren’t made waching TV. Life is so short and I want to be present for all of it. I don’t want to waste my precious time being told how I should look or what I should want (also why I don’t buy magazines anymore). I really don’t care what the Hollywood stars are doing, saying or wearing. I love the fact that my kids have no idea what a BRATZ doll is or who Hannah Montana is or what High School Musical is. I love that they adored the castle that Ron made for them at Christmas and that it wasn’t MADE IN CHINA or made from plastic. As I get older I find myself deploring the consumerism that defines American life. Everything is disposable, everything is about appearances and having the right car, handbag, hairstyle, jewelry, cell phone, clothing, body shape and bra size. I think that we have all lost sight of what really matters. Have have have get get get buy buy buy does not make us happier. Maybe it feels good for a minute but why? Because we have one upped the Jones’, or because we are one step closer to looking just so? In the last few months we have tried to reverse our years of that mindset of having and getting. We are constantly selling stuff we don’t use or need. Our entire focus is probably the exact opposite of most people here in Scottsdale. And you know what? It feels good. Really really good. We aren’t just selling stuff but we are giving stuff away too. I have discovered freecycle. This is an online group (probably one near you) that is all about the giving and receiving of free stuff in an effort to keep things out of the landfills a while longer. Right before Christmas we went through the kids toys and gave away everything that they didn’t use regularly. The whole lot of it went to a foster mom of 3 girls for their Christmas gifts. Even Sage felt good about that. So, to those of our friends and family who know about us ditching our TVs and selling all of our stuff: No, we are not starving or even having financial difficulties we are just trying to make the most of our lives.

Okay, I will step down from my soap box now.

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6 thoughts on “Ditching TV Among Other Things

  1. Kim
    I just found your blog today through Fire & Salt. I am a mom of 5 in Dublin OH and we have been dabbling in the gfree world for about 6 months. None of us have Celiac but my husband’s gluten levels were really high so we started to ditch gluten. I have always loved healthy food, more so then most people I know & am in the constant process of refining our food choices. I have been inspired by your blog this morning. I have a sister in Scottsdale & I was looking for your bio when I came across this entry above, love it, we all need that reminder of the temporary of everything around us, the stuff that is. We have much in common! I’m looking forward to following your blog & learning more b/c there are some differences in some of our choices but I love learning more from others.
    Keep it going strong!
    Tricia

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    • Glad you found my blog. I love to hear that there are other people out there like me. Honestly, in real life, I know no one that has the same food beliefs as me. Most of my friends think I am nuts. Too bad you didn’t live here! 😉
      What do you mean that your husbands gluten levels were high? Are you referring to his Ttg level, which are the anitbodies to gluten? Is your whole family gluten free?
      We are still without cable. I LOVE LOVE LOVE that my kids have no idea who Hannah Montana is or anyone else for that matter. I love that they are not inundated with commercials for junk food.

      So how do we differ in our choices? How are we the same. I love to see how other people eat. I think that I would actually like to work in a grocery store as a cashier for a while. I might have trouble holding my tounge though and I’d get fired. Hehehehe.

      I haven’t posted much lately. My oldest just started kindergarten so we are adjusting to the new routine. I am also doing a lot of reading, both of other blogs and of a couple great books: Good Calories Bad Calories and Nourishing Traditions. Read either of those? I’m having trouble finding the time to post. I’ll get to it though. I have so many posts all up in my head, just need to find time to “write” them down.

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  2. Here, here! I, like you, have been saying to my husband about ditching cable to live a simpler and more fulfilling life. Maybe one day he will get the idea too. We, as a family have been gluten free since January after finding out my son is on the spectrum and could benefit from gluten/casein free diet. One for all and all for one is our motto. I am so happy to have found your blog through Pinterest. you have saved my sanity with this transitiont. I actually have your simple bread recipe in my bread machine as I type (only because I didn’t have tapioca flour to make the long version…ugh). Thanks for all your tasty recipes!

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    • Sorry it’s taken me so long to respond. I’m glad you have found my blog helpful. I too remember that first year and all the changes we made. It was a very steep learning curve. I still firmly believe that the first of our families 3 celiac diagnoses saved our lives. We had been moving along like a typical american family. It never really occurred to me that what we put in our mouths would have such a huge impact on our health. January 2007 was when it started for us. Since then we not only eat differently but we live our lives differently. One change lead to the next and like you when one benefitted from a change we all made that same change. As time goes on there are more and more resources online to help make those changes. Can you imagine how hard things would be without the internet??!!

      How did the bread turn out? Kim

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