Wednesday, January 28, 2009

thoughts on pizza and a movie

Thanks everyone, for all your well wishes for Rainer. He did awesome on his first day of DI. He went for his usual "outpatient surgery" routine and was extremely brave. I stayed until he woke up and I nursed him then went to work. Ken finished up.

Two things: I like an easy pizza. Here's what we've been having lately. Homemade pizza dough made in the food processor (so fast and easy!), then jarred pesto followed by shredded mozzarella. So easy and really yummy.

About movies: we usually watch movies with the children twice a week. It's more than what I think is ideal, and I was reading in Beyond the Rainbow Bridge that children who watch more than 1.5 hours of TV/movies a week tend to be less imaginative in their play and just want to act out a script basically from the movie. And I do see that a little bit with Dieter. He is Land Before Time obsessed! We don't have/watch TV, so these movies are their only video time, and for better or worse we've fallen into this twice a week routine.

So I was thinking, on the second night (usually a Friday), why not watch something creative. Not a story, like Land Before Time or Jungle Book, but something much more open ended. So we broke out Kristen's Fairy House, a favorite from Faith's childhood. It's a very mellow video about a girl and her aunt who visit an island near Maine where people make fairy houses. Dieter loved it and I think we should always try to make something like this our second video of the week. We also have the Bali DVD from Little Travelers (which Angelina and her girls so kindly sent to Rainer when he was hospitalized last November). Good stuff, people. (I can't wait for the Iran edition to come out). I'm just thinking this will be better for the little ones and for us too. I can only watch Land Before Time or Spot or Thomas so many times!

If you have suggestions for "creative" type DVDs I'd love to hear them.

17 comments:

Kelli said...

Please share you pizza dough recipe. We like musicals in our house but maybe thats too old yet. I love 7 brides for 7 brothers.

Anna said...

We love David Attenborough's BBC series' - there are loads and they are all natural history of some sort. All my kids have loved them from the age of about 18 months onwards and they are all very knowledgable about all things to do with the natural world now. They are happy to watch them many times.

Carrie said...

Anna and her new boyfriend (who I like!) watched The Brave Little Toaster for their date last night. I loved that movie and think it might make a good training tool for work on problem solving and teamwork.

Suzanne said...

"Alone in the Wilderness" is a great story of a man self-sustaining himself in Alaska in his 50's. Boys like it especially because of all the woodworking, fishing and hunting but the girls here like it too. It was a PBS movie. So happy your son did so well:-)

Angie said...

Lately at our house, I have been bringing back movies that I watched as a child. The two that I recently purchased were, "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" and "The New Adventures of Pippi Longstocking". My kids (ages 7, 6, and 2) love them. And if you have seen either, imagination and creativity just runs rampant throughout both.

So glad Rainer is doing well. I applaud the fact that you are still nursing.... I wish I was. With my last two children, my milk supply dried up at two months post partum with no explanation, my doctor was baffled, but said that it occasionally happens. I was heartbroken. Anyway, I'm sure that the extra nutrients in breast milk are benefitting Rainer. :)

Have a great day!

Hannah said...

My son adores the movie version of Swallows and Amazons and it always makes him want to get outdoors and explore. I'm not sure if it will be too old for your boys but certainly one to think about in the future.

Kristy said...

It's funny isn't how we worry so much about movies affecting childrens imagination.Books were considered to have a similar effects years ago.People tried to ban fiction in particular saying it would taint peoples minds! Obviously now how we know they help.
My girls are well known for there very advanced imaginations yet we really don't limit movie watching to any great degree.We vet every movie but not really access to them.Unlike TV which is much harder to vet. Children who are stimulated in a well rounded way make their own choices, I feel, about what makes a story good or bad.
I must admit that The Land Before Time series is one of our favourites.I think we must have about 12 of them!

Nina said...

If you haven't already checked it out, Barry Kane has a new Fairy House book. The photographs are wonderful and it has really inspired my 4 year old to create fairy houses.

I'm marking Kristen's Fariy House for the future. Thanks for sharing.

eight feet said...

Our boys (2.5 & 6.5) enjoy watching "Planet Earth" and "Blue Planet" series on DVD. The subject opens up all sorts of wonderful discussions about animals and their habitats.

Andrea said...

We got Microcosmos from Netflix last year and my kids (then 6 and 2) loved it--there is no narration, just super close-ups of insects doing their insecty things. We saw it again at a bug day at the museum and again they were rapt (everyone especially liked the dung beetle trying to push a ball of dung uphill).

Jonah Lisa said...

I'm dealing with this exact same dilemma right now and am planning a post on REAL educational movies. I have some new suggestions to check out now!

We are loving the Blue Planet and Planet Earth series. You have to be willing to discuss the food chain though but they are amazing.

W also have Nat'l Geo's Really Wild Animals series (DINOS!) in our queue. Looks good but geared to younger kids, not the whole family.

I've just received the Little Travelers in Japan and British Isles but haven't watched yet. Sesame Street also has a series of travel shows--Big Bird in Japan for example. Haven't seen them but I plan to take a look.

Not really open ended but I've always loved Shelly Duvall's Fearie Tale Theatre series as well. At least they aren't cartoons and are entertaining for everyone in the family.

MoziEsmé said...

That pizza looks so yummy! And you are doing great on the TV thing with 2 movies a week. We, I ashamedly admit, are doing the DVD babysitter thing way too much at the moment. At the very least I'd like to be able to watch the DVD with Esme and recap with her afterwards, and I'm not even doing that.

taimarie said...

We try to limit videos here too, I am amazed how quickly their play becomes movie focused! Little bear is the favorite ...alright, it is the only one we have-so it is the only possible favorite! I am keen to read all the comments and get ideas for some new creative shows around here.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much! I just don't know what I'd do w/out these fine blogs to get ideas for how I want to parent my galie! You guys are amazing!

Tara

Deirdre said...

Today's winter post led me to read these comments. Love all the suggestions.

We limit "screen time" to just Monday afternoons and Friday nights. But after years of wrestling with it, I've come to that conclusion too---that our family LOVES stories and therefore books and movies are among our favorite things. Yes, my sons pretend to Mowgli and want to wear nothing but their red chonies, but I'm okay with that---because they always take the inspiration farther.

The oldest, soon to be 7, is all about making his own movies now, based on his stories and drawings. I agree, there are positives in this medium as long as it is kept, like everything else, in balance.

Title suggestion--the old "Wee Sing Train" video if you can find it. Very low production but a boy and girl set up a train with lots of detail and then imagine that they are aboard their creation.

Tori said...

I, too, love pizza and a movie night which we do about twice a month. Here is a great guide - The Best Old Movies for Families: A Guide to Watching Together by Ty Burr. He has some great suggestions for movies that you'd normally not think of. For example, my 7 yr old son recently watched the original King Kong with my mom and loved it! I also agree with Kristy's comment, a child can recreate a story from a book as well as a movie all we can do is guide them.

amy turn sharp of doobleh-vay said...

so glad to hear things are well- we also don't have tv/cable and use videos...I love Planet Earth and BBC type history shows thrown in the mix...I also use my non fiction video section at the library as much as kids section. xoxoxo