Tuesday, July 28, 2009

20 Things Besides TV

Once baseball is over, we've survived summer school, and vacation is a fond memory--then what?

One kid in particular seems to believe that his lot in life is to sit in front of the TV watching Frasier DVDs, movies, and non-cable re-runs.

"C. Peevie," we said to him. "Get up and do something besides watching TV!"

"But there's nothing to deeewwwww!" he whined. Aha! I said to myself. A teachable moment.

"Turn off the TV, C. Peevie," I said. "I have an assignment for you." He looked at me from under glowering eyebrows. "Off," I reiterated. He complied, grumpily.

"Here's the deal," I told him. "I want you to write me a list of 20 things you can do instead of watching TV and playing video games."

"Awwwww, Mom!" he arghed, "That's completely lame."

"It's going to be 25 things instead of 20 if you argue with me," I said cheerfully.

It was 24 hours and no TV later that the boy handed me my list. Here's what he came up with, in its complete and unedited beauty:

  1. reading
  2. bike
  3. scooter
  4. drawing
  5. park
  6. hang out with pals
  7. stroll
  8. write a book
  9. knit woollen scarves for the homeless
  10. found a charity
  11. clean windows
  12. making Stouffer's family size mac & cheez
  13. making money
  14. cleaning
  15. shopping
  16. goin 2 the bathroom
  17. checkin email
  18. talk w/ friends
  19. cook
  20. pray
I like this list. Next time he tells me he's bored, I will whip out this little list and remind him that there are at least 20 different ways he can spend his time that does not involve sitting in front of a screen.

M. Peevie found the list on the couch, and read it. She was intrigued, and decided to write her own list of "20 things you can do other than watch TV:"

  1. read
  2. play outside
  3. climb a tree
  4. go shopping
  5. try on everything in my wardrobe
  6. plant a flower
  7. cook dinner
  8. hang with pals
  9. make a new club
  10. re-decorate my room
  11. have a garage sale
  12. save money for something I really want
  13. go to collage [where, presumably, she'll learn how to spell "college." She is, after all, only 8.]
  14. get my own house
  15. make a tree house
  16. visit all the places I want to see
  17. go to swim class (I really want to!)
  18. learn how to golf
  19. go to the park
  20. get old stuff from the dump

Get old stuff from the dump? Seriously. Because our house does not have enough crap in it that belongs in the dump, so we need to bring more stuff home. I think I saw a square millimeter of uncluttered space in the dining room earlier today, so we can definitely fit some dump treasures there.

I have more items to add to their list of things they can do instead of watching TV:

  1. Start a blog
  2. Visit an elderly neighbor
  3. Swim
  4. Toss the baseball with your little brother
  5. Write thank you notes to anyone who has ever done something kind for you
  6. Make a gratitude list
  7. Listen to music
  8. Learn to play an instrument
  9. Learn a language
  10. Learn to juggle
  11. Clean something. Anything.
  12. Make a list of birthdays you want to remember
  13. Make cards for people on the list
  14. Write in a journal
  15. Burn a CD for a friend
  16. Go for a jog
  17. Offer to take a neighbor's dog for a walk
  18. Wash the car
  19. Bake cookies
  20. Make a scrapbook
There. Sixty things (more or less) that you can do when you're bored and your mom or your conscience tells you to turn off the TV.

What's on your list?


Anonymous said...

JRO: I want to see C. Peevie knit some woollen scarves

E. Peevie said...

JRo: Do you know anyone who could teach him how to knit?

Anonymous said...

I almost peed my pants laughing about the bit from the dump. That child is destined (and I am not being toungue-in-cheek here) for something great. I can't wait to see what it is!

Anonymous said...

JRO: I'm certain I could find someone to sit down & knit with Mr. C. BTW, M.Peevie's list resembles something my little J would write