My baby sister was raised by Mary Poppins. Seriously. She watched the movie 24 hours a day for at least three years straight. She would get up in the morning and put it in the VCR and watch it. She would wander in and out of the room doing various things all day but don’t think for a moment she wasn’t watching it. We tried turning it off when she wasn’t looking but, that was a mistake. She would instantly materialize as our hand left the button on the television (yes, we actually touched the tv…no remote…) and demand to know why we were turning it off. “Turn it back on!” And that we would do. Nobody wanted to upset the princess….she was way cuter when she was happy. (and safer….just saying….)
There were worse things she could have chosen to be addicted to at that young age. I look at the movies and tv shows my kids have access to today and sometimes think I should make them sit and watch Mary Poppins for days….it could only help. When I was a kid, television was pretty tame. We only had cartoons on Saturday mornings and even then it was only stuff like Scooby Doo, Looney Tunes, and Tom and Jerry. Okay, so lots of violence in those last two, but have you seen the current cartoons? Not only are cartoons on 24 hours a day, but they have moved way beyond the chase scenes between the cat and mouse and coyote and roadrunner and have moved onto issues such as single parenthood, money issues, business planning and hooking up. I watched a looney tune cartoon the other day with good old Bugs Bunny and Daffy duck and came away from it hoping they would work out their income issues and be able to keep their house. Seriously? This is fun for kids? I can’t imagine half of them even understand what they are watching and why they are so stressed out at the end of the day.
I miss the days of carefree, really fun cartoons and tv shows. Things back in the day were just stupid and fun. Of course, it could be that I was just completely naive about the whole thing. I think about what shows my parents watched….MASH, Love Boat….hmmm…those could be pretty mature. Of course, they were pretty strict about what we could watch. We were not allowed to watch Three’s company (obvious), Dallas (thank you mom), and of course….The Electric Company. That show was just toooo wild! It could make us turn into juvenile delinquents. And don’t even get me started on Walace and Ladmo….Do you remember that show? I never really understood the point of it…especially why that little guy dressed like a girl….but looking back now it seems really really weird. Maybe Mom had something there.
Today we had a really nice time watching general conference at home. It was just wonderful. There were not commercials, no inappropriate sex scenes, no gratuitous violence, no clever product placement, no cleavage, and no music that made my skin crawl or made me feel like something dreadful was coming. It was just wonderfully inspired messages from the leaders of the church. It was great to have Brian and the kids and I all together listening, taking notes, singing the songs, and talking about each talk after it ended. I think that if television was like that all the time, the world would be a different place. If we really could use the tv as a place to get good, inspired information all day instead of it being a crap projector that fills our heads and homes with the murky world….that would be awesome.
I almost cried today at the end of president Monsons talk. I didn’t want it to end! I felt like I was at the end of a big family reunion (without the weird cousins) and I wanted to just stay there, basking in the love and fellowship of the whole thing. I comforted myself by thinking about the Ensign that would be here in a few weeks, full of the words I had just heard, ready for me to read. I also started thinking about the next conference that would be here in October. I look forward to it. I will miss hearing the prophet and apostles speaking until then. Thank goodness we have the ensign and other books and media that can bring us their words between conferences.
I feel very blessed today to have the gospel and the guidance it brings into my life. I’m pretty sure I would really be the worst mom on the planet if I didn’t have that help in raising my kids. I know I’m not mom of the year with it, but….it would be grizzly without it….cause I said so.