Thursday, July 21, 2011


"Do I get to watch this for free, or does this cost me time Mom?"  is something that I hear alot around our house these days.

Having a newborn causes life to kinda come to a standstill.  They need alot of attention, and when you are seems like that is all that you do.  When Grayson was 2 weeks old, Shawn had the opportunity to go to Salt Lake with EVMCO to perform in the Tabernacle.  We were planning on going with him, but ended up staying home instead.  The only problem was that he was also scheduled to leave the following week for business to France.  So that meant that I had no 'Daddy' to help out for 2 weeks, and having a newborn with 3 other children was a recipe for disaster.

Needless to say, we did survive...barely.  My children ended up watching ALOT of movies/television, and played on the computer most of the day.  I was definitely in pure survival mode.  With little sleep, me basically being treated like a cow 24/7 and no reprieve...I did what I had to do to get through the day.

Once Shawn got home from his travels, and things started to normalize.  I knew that I had to do something to curb the time spent in front of the TV, computer, & Wii.  So I implemented a plan.

  1. In order to play or watch...they had to 'earn' time minute for minute. 
  2. They can earn time by doing chores, reading books (Caden), working on 'sight' words (Sydney), or practicing the piano.  
  3. They can only 'cash in' up to 2 hours per day
    • A TV show is 'worth' 30 mins 
    • A Movie is 'worth' 1 hour
    • Computer time is minute for minute
    • If Mom or Dad are watching something (ie. we are choosing the program) then it is 'free'
Let me tell has worked wonders!  

I no longer have to fight with them to turn off the TV or get off the computer.  

They don't argue when I ask them to pick things up or clean their room.  In fact all I have to do is tell them that they will 'LOSE' time if they don't do something...and then they will do it.  

Caden & Sydney are in constant competition.  They never want the other to have more than them. (Which means alot of things get done around the house so they can 'earn' more time to catch up with the other)  

I smiled the other day when Caden came down, and saw that Sydney has chose to watch one of her beloved 'horse' movies (she is on a major horse kick, and requested all movies that have a horse on/in it be added to our Netflix queue).  He could not believe she was 'wasting' an HOUR to watch a movie!

It is great to hear/watch them play together, instead of veg in front of the TV. 

I find that I am getting more things done because the TV is off more than it is on. 

I love how it makes my kids really weigh their options on how they want to utilize their time.  

I don't think they have cleaned their rooms by themselves in a long time.  It is nice to be able to come up, and it is all done with out my help.  

I think our 'time' system will be around awhile.  
Just for fun...because a post is just better when there is a picture, right??  Can you believe how BLUE this little guys eyes are??  I hope they stay that way, and check out those eyelashes!  Why do boys always seem to be blessed with such long gorgeous ones!?

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1 people know I LOVE comments!:

tammy said...

That's a great system. I love that they each try to outdo each other with the chores.

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