Here's a fun TV-free anecdote from the other day:
My friend came over to use my internet conection to send out some job applications, and brought her 4 year old daughter, S, with her. S was feeling shy at first, didn't want to talk to me at all, and seemed kind of freaked out by my 9 month old DS (she has an older half brother and sister, and hasn't had a lot of exposure to babies). A few minutes after they came over, S whispered something to her mother. "They don't have a television." my friend told S. S again repeated the request, and I assured her that we really didn't have one, explaining that we don't like to watch television.
S hung around her mother for a few minutes. I joked with her a little bit. She started saying nonsense words to me with a real word at the end, I responded in kind, and this became a game for a few minutes. She started asking about DS's toys. After a half hour or so, she was gleefully building towers out of DS's blocks, and laughing when he knocked them down. I read books to both of them, and she pretended to read books to DS. She followed me into the other room while I changed DS, asking questions about the whole process. At one point, when I handed DS to my friend so that I could put some laundry in the dryer and DS got upset, S sang "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" to him. All the while, my friend and I were able to converse here and there, S asked us both lots of questions, and DS beamed at everyone, loving the company and attention. There was a lot of laughter all around. When they got ready to go home, S didn't want to leave!
If I had had a television, or been the kind of person that just keeps the television on, this visit would have gone really differently. S would likely have just been glued to the television for 2 hours, if my friend had allowed it. She probably wouldn't have gotten over her shyness with me. She wouldn't have ended up playing so well with DS, or learning about him, or "reading" to him, or trying to comfort him. She would have missed out on all of this. DS would have missed out on this rich interaction. My friend and I probably wouldn't have gotten to converse as much, as DS would have needed more of my attention. It would have been a far less rich experience for everyone.
That is what I love about having a TV-free home!
Edited by SaguaroMoon - 2/14/13 at 2:58pm