As part of the Netflix #StreamTeam, I’ll be doing a monthly post highlighting certain themes and movies from their service. In exchange for these posts, I received a year’s membership to Netflix and a streaming device, but the opinions expressed are entirely my own! So be warned. : )
My family’s got a big weekend coming up—back-to-back birthdays for Cate and Felicity, who turn 14 and 12 respectively. Yes, I know I’m supposed to be out shopping for turkey…and I’ll get to that…maybe…though right now I’m trying to wrap my mind ’round the fact that my baby girls are growing up.
Can’t I just, like, spray them with some sort of anti-aging lacquer?
“Please will you just stay ELEVEN?!”
“And YOU THERE! Would you just stay THIRTEEN?!!”
Time, like the seasons, keeps marching along, and I hang on for the ride because WHAT CHOICE DO I HAVE? I’ll tell you what I have been doing—I’ve been watching movies with my sweet, sweet girls and know for a FACT this is a good way to bond.
The way to a teenaged son’s heart is through baked goods.
The way to a teenaged daughter’s? Back-to-back episodes of Psych.
That said, when it comes to watching movies with your teens and pre-teens, the key word is preview. Preview! Preview! Preview! And if you can’t pre-view—i.e. view the program before they do—then watch it with them, ’cause there’s lots of junk out there.
For example, I’ve recently discovered The Gilmore Girls and am smitten (already!) with the characters. Is it appropriate, though, for my almost-14-year-old? I’m not sure yet.
We also watched The Boy in Striped Pajamas as a family, but when I saw where the movie was going, and sensed that the ending would be really sad, we turned it off and just had a discussion.
(I do like a good dose of reality now & then. It’s a good remedy against being too superficial and spoiled, both for myself and for the kids.)
Here’s a good website with plenty of common-sense advice. It’s called Common Sense Media, coincidentally, and here are three great articles to get you started:
- Watch Out!: Loveable Movies with Surprisingly Scary Scenes
- Watch Out!: Cursing in “Family” Movies
- When Movies Don’t Match the Ratings
It’s hard to be vigilant, especially with the holiday season approaching. We were at another family’s house for dinner once and Forrest Gump was on the TV. I walked through the living room and it was just...playing to an empty room! Now I happen to really like that movie but it’s definitely not for kids.
That Jenny girl had some issues.
We’re talking a lot about school and friendship these days, and what it means to be a real friend. My 8th grader has commented on some of the cliques at her school and that some girls can be “extremely negative.” I feel anxious when I hear this and want to give these gals a stern talking-to, yet what can you do? You can be there for your girls and you can keep your home a cozy, safe place.
Bake them some peppermint chocolate chip cookies (’cause who doesn’t love pairing peppermint and chocolate?) and cuddle up with some super-cute shows. I find that even my “big” girls like to watch the old favorites, and hey! Veggie Tales has a new movie on Netflix! It’s called Veggie Tales: In the House and previews on November 26th.
We’ll be making these cucumber rolls alongside those cookies.
The movie’s called VEGGIE Tales, after all. ; )