Our Screen Free Day (21st Jan 2014)

We don’t have a TV in the house, which was a decision that was made when we moved here almost three years ago. We had an old clunky telly and no where to put it, so gave it away on Freecycle. We had planned on buying a flat screen to put on the wall, but couldn’t justify the cost after all the moving expenses. We would make do with watching catch up and films on our laptop while we saved but after a couple of weeks of living this way, we realised we actually preferred it and decided to go without. I now view it as one of the best decisions we have made.

We aren’t anti-TV by any stretch of the imagination – I have spoke before about mine and hubby’s love of good Film and Telly, and when we get into a boxed set we are hooked – but we enjoy not being marketed to by endless adverts. We even stopped watching C4 on demand because the ads drive us both crazy. Most days the girls only watch around an hours’ TV at the end of the day when they’re eating their tea, and winding down. They need it by then, and rather than hype them up before getting into the bath and going to bed it helps chill them out.

2014-01-19 14.53.49

So, back to the screen free day, the bigger challenge was going to be for myself. Not checking into my various apps on my phone… did I achieve it? Not exactly but almost! Seeing as the sun came out for the first time in what seems like forever, we decided to go to our favourite farmers market, and head to the lovely park and playpark near it. Getting there requires using the train, and I needed to check that it was running because it wasn’t last week. While I had my phone out I also checked the Met Office to make sure there wasn’t any rain predicted. There wasn’t, and although it was freezing out, we all had a fab day.

We picked up some delicious food at the market for lunch – Rendang curry for me which was amazing. Slowly strolled through the park, with both girls napping in our Phil & Ted’s double buggy (needs must and all that). Then hubby had lots of fun in the playpark running around after the girls. At almost 37 weeks pregnant I took the opportunity to sit down and rest on a bench, and resisted the temptation to look at my phone which was rather liberating. On the way back through the station the girls had a play on a Street Piano, which they loved (apart from checking the time, the only other reason I used my phone was to take the photo above). By the time we got home it was prep-tea time, and little one’s turn to help me in the kitchen. Rather than getting the laptop out and letting 4yo watch TV, hubby sat with her and they made some things out of beads with one of her Xmas pressies.

I didn’t do a single blog-related thing at all for 24 hours which is quite something – Sunday evening is usually a main blogging session, as hubby works out. Instead I worked on my book in the old fashioned way, on paper with a pen. All in all a good day, not hugely different for the girls if I’m honest but as I said it was quite liberating at points for me. I remember feeling the same when I lost my iPhone a couple of years back and had to use an old cheapie phone, that was only capable of calls and text messages. I toyed with the idea of not getting another smartphone but caved after a week or so, because it does make life so much easier.

Did you think you could rise to the challenge of a screen free day?

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22 thoughts on “Our Screen Free Day (21st Jan 2014)

  1. Hmm perhaps when JJ starts school this September it will be the same story with overtiredness… I guess we’ll have to play it by ear! I just know that if I took away his portable DVD player (Christmas present to wean him off my Kindle!) we would need serious alternatives to distract! Having said that he only really watches it when he is at home and feeling a bit tired.

  2. At the moment we hardly have anything planned which is lovely, it’s probably going to be the way it is for the foreseeable future too with baby due imminently. 4yo desperately needs the down time as she’s exhausted after school. Overdoing it at the weekend just means her starting Monday tired and grumpy. Not all kids are like mine though, ones that sleep all night and have lots of energy to burn off probably need to be out all day long running around 😉

    It’s a shame you didn’t realise the piano was there for the playing, the girls loved it.

  3. I loved this post – its so nice to be reminded that the world still exists without all this technology we are so obsessively plugged into! Having said that I’m not sure I could do this with the kids unless we really had a full day of activities planned – probably hour by hour!! I completely agree with you about telly and adverts too – I hate them! I rarely watch the TV and love iPlayer and DVDs from LoveFilm on my laptop. C4oD really frustrates me because not only are there all the ads but my player seems to have lost all its buttons so you can pause, forward or rewind – so annoying. I only press on to see real faves like “Misfits”. There was a ‘street piano’ right next to the beach in Ventnor on the Isle of Wight where we went on holiday last August but I didn’t know there was such a thing – it was all decorated complete with spooky eye motif! No one really knew whether they were allowed to touch it!

  4. Well done! It does seem that we have all discovered something about ourselves rather than our children, during this challenge doesn’t it 🙂

  5. No TV?! I am most impressed. The only way I knew I was going to succeed at this, was to put all of our gadgets (including my phone) in a box with a lid on it. It had to be all or nothing for me! Do you think you will do it again?

  6. Well done! Like you screen-free wouldn’t be a big challenge for the boys, sometimes they don’t even turn the tv on! The biggest challenge would be for me and OH with our phones and computers! :S x

  7. Thank you! Good for you re: the telly and not checking phone too much. You’re so right, it can be a real distraction. Also my girls get really grumpy with me if I’m on the phone too much. Little divas 😉

  8. Well done! Thank you for joining in with #ScreenFreeDay. It sounds like a good day for everyone.
    Thanks for linking #LetKidsBeKids
    (Ps I’m adding another linkup tomorrow for all screen-free posts if you’d like to add it to that too?) x

  9. sounds like a fabulous challenge that you were really successful at. im not keen on tv tbh so we only tend to watch things on catch up, i cant stand the thought of it being on all day! ive recently stopped looking at my phone so much in the day because it can get distracting. id love to challenge myself to do a full day screen free. #letkidsbekids

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