the tellyless/lesstelly experiment

Although we don’t watch a huge amount of television I do think Boo watches far too much. Generally we watch a handful of programmes. Me – CSI mainly with occasional Home & Away and Neighbours stints. Tom – Heroes and Spooks, the girls – Friends. But Boo, Boo is another matter, she can name characters from Balamory, The Little Red Fox, The Night Garden, The Tweenies, Lunar Jim and just about every other that is on CBeebies. Now this didn’t used to be the case.

Before I’d put it on for a little bit and sit and watch it with her and then switch off, but then…… in August she started being off colour, she’d been exposed to Chicken Pox so we assumed she was coming down with it. Then she got a nasty tummy bug, and then finally the Chicken Pox arrived, it took a while for her to get over it and then her cough and ear infection…. The easiest way to calm her was to sit her down with a video, or with CBeebies and it just became a habit. One I have to say I indulged in partly because as this pregnancy progresses I feel more and more tired. But then last week I started thinking this wasn’t good enough.

Her speech is fantastic, she’s incredibly sociable, her physical development is fine too but I just wasn’t really engaging with her. Then Tom brought the book home. I’ve read it cover to cover and I’m determined.

I will do all the things I did with the girls with her. It’s not like we don’t have things to do or like I don’t know what to do, I just need to get off my bottom and do them! 

So today was day 1. I’ve decided that if we find it’s too hard with the telly there as temptation then we’ll move it upstairs until it stops being a focus. In the immediate I’m going to remove all the videos from the lounge, hopefully out of sight out of mind.  

We’ve glued & stuck penguins & pizzas,


built block towers, threaded block necklaces, threaded buttons and played matching pairs games. we’ve mixed and baked fairy cakes and then decorated them and it’s only lunchtime.


This afternoon the plan is to go meet Tom for coffee and take him a Boo cake. The Boo cakes were made from scratch, I’ve added a photo of some hideous packet mix cakes Noise made with Boo a couple of weeks ago.


 They were overly sweet, totally artificial tasting and shocking pink….. today she chose to decorate in green (nice pale hint of green), yellow (again nice pale hint of yellow) and white with (inevitably) hundreds & thousands. I don’t mind the hundreds & thousands, even with these these cakes are a million miles from the shop bought packet mix the girls made last time. Boo also wanted some of them turned into Butterfly cakes so we did that too.

It’s been a fun morning; maybe she’ll reinstate her afternoon nap if she’s more stimulated in the morning. I can’t believe I let the telly situation get as bad as it did but it was easy, it stopped her whining and I have to be honest she did an awful lot of that while she was getting sick, being sick and getting over it!! And it’s been a long few months even with the telly!   


2 thoughts on “the tellyless/lesstelly experiment

  1. Quick suggestion on how to reduce TV time.

    In a 30 minute show there are almost 10 minutes of commericals. So why not watch just the show and not the commericals. Here’s what I do.

    Most of the networks including the ones with your favorite shows load the episode up on their website the next day. If you go to you’ll see most of the back episodes of Heros.

    I like to play them back on my 60″ TV screen so I run an S-Cable from my laptop into the TV. It’s digital quality. Just need broadband.

  2. Hi Steve

    Thanks for that.

    It’s not so much our telly consumption that worries me, we do literally only watch a few shows each week. It’s the childrens. we don’t watch any commercial stations so luckily they’re not bombarded by advertisements but I am so aware of them. The other day one of the older girls did swtich to a commercial channel and for 10 minutes all there was was adverts.

    My biggest thing has been using the telly as a babysitter for the last few months. I’m hopefully over that now. I’m not sayng I won’t resort to it on occassion but I’m hoping I won’t and if I do it’ll be a rarity.

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