The Science of Nagging

Just three minutes long — how marketers get your kids to nag you to buy their products.

A related video is below¬† — five minutes long — about how marketing isn’t what it used to be and how it’s creating a generation of super-consumers.¬† Very scary.

TVs in Children’s Bedrooms

It’s true. Not only is it true, up to 70% of children have televisions in their bedrooms. Honestly, I had no idea. But, studies have found if the TV viewing is reduced, the kids get thinner (not because they exercise more, but because they eat less).

Do you think they used the decal below to get kids to not watch tv?

Actually, they used a device called TV Allowance.

Limiting TV, Screen Time Curbs Childhood Obesity, Study Finds

By Michelle Fay Cortez

March 3 (Bloomberg) — Limiting the time that young children spend with television and computers shaves calories from their diets and reduces their risk of becoming obese, researchers said.

Investigators attached a $100 electronic device called the TV Allowance to televisions and computers in the homes of 70 volunteer families. The device controls the amount of screen time users have and was programmed to cut the allotment by 10 percent monthly, for several months, for children aged 4 to 7.

Children whose viewing was eventually cut in half ate less, spent less time on sedentary activities and developed a healthier body mass index, a ratio of height to weight. The reduction in screen time didn’t translate into additional physical activity, providing insight into how sitting in front of a television or computer contributes to obesity in children, the researchers said.

“It looks like screen time is influencing eating more than physical activity,” said Leonard Epstein, a professor of pediatrics at the State University of New York at Buffalo. “It’s possible that when there is a regular pairing of eating and watching TV, just watching television becomes a cue for eating,” he said. “And television can also be a distraction from how much you are eating.”

More on the study here:

A One-Eyed Invader in the Bedroom (from the New York Times)

Device helps fat kids cut TV time

“Finny, let’s watch TV!”

Yes, that’s what Leo said when he saw the TV at the Wenham Museum exhibit on old toys. They didn’t sit there long, but they enjoyed it while it lasted.

While Finn ironed (this will make Uncle Stevie in London proud!!), Leo dressed up went in the playhouse. Then Finn and Leo set up shop, but eventually they had a fight over who got to run the cash register.

Steph found a great article about why imaginative play, like they are doing here (in 3 out of 4 photos), is so important and why kids are doing less and less of it (blame the other photo).

Here’s the story (you can listen or read):


Reading “The Polar Express”

Auntie Steph, Cousin Finn, Leo and Sophie enjoy “The Polar Express”, which got hauled out with all the other Christmas books on Saturday. Finn had never heard the story.




These kids have never seen the movie and we hope to keep it that way! There aren’t that many resources/role-models for tv-free parenting, but I just found a couple that look interesting