tell me if this is too much TV - Mothering Forums

View Poll Results: what is your household TV MO?
TV free, no TV ever 29 8.31%
TV limited, but we do the occassional movie or show 81 23.21%
we limit but watch something everyday 116 33.24%
we are aware, but don't really limit, we just like to do other things more 49 14.04%
we don't limit usage, but we do police the content 57 16.33%
no limits on it at all 17 4.87%
Voters: 349. You may not vote on this poll

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#1 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 05:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I put this in parenting because I am not TV free and it is more a parenting issue than about a particular show.

I let DD(20mos.) watch sesame street every morning. I watch one soap opera a few times a week if I am putting her down for her nap(I hold her and she has her bottle). A lot of times when she wakes up from her nap she is very lazy and likes to watch a movie.

I know this is a lot more TV than a lot of people here let there kids watch, but where I am I on the spectrum?
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#2 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 06:20 PM
 
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It's definitely not a lot compared to many parents who let Noggin run nonstop all day long, but I personally think it's too much. That's 3 hours a day. I'd do 30 mins or an hour, but not every day.
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#3 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 06:23 PM
 
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That would be too much for us. I would probably be ok with Sesame Street every morning and the soap opera as background noise while going down for the nap, but the movie would cross the line with me. YMMV.

We don't do TV, but a few times a week DH and I will watch Stargate or some other show on the computer while I nurse DS down for bed.

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#4 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 06:32 PM
 
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I let my DD when she was that age watch about the same amount. Sesame Street and sometimes I'd watch something in the afternoon, usually a cooking show or something. I'm not one who is completely convinced on the tv is gonna ruin your life though. I mean I *know* there are studies that say children who watch X amount of ANY tv have less vocab by certain ages, and for me I have to say I guess that is ok because my DD has a HUGE vocab and never stops talking. She knows large words and what they mean, and some she did learn from watching PBS shows-so it can't be that bad, IMO.

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#5 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 06:35 PM
 
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DS would watch all day if I let him. We are TV free in that we don't have access to TV channels, but we all love movies and have our favorite TV shows.

There have been days when my DS has watched alot, but I definitely limit it and if there is a day when he watches alot, then he has to have a TV free day. It's definitely our little issue (can I watch today? one more simpson's episode mom, please, please, please? why can't I watch anymore :meltdown).

I think for that age that's alot of watching, I think my DS was over 2 when I started to let him watch whole movies, but maybe I'm not remembering right.
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#6 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 06:38 PM
 
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To me, that's fine. We went a year without TV and that sort of put it into perspective for me. Before that, the kids watched quite a bit.

Now, though, since the change to digital TV or whatever, we don't watch much at all... b/c we don't have cable or the adaptor thing. Some channels come in at times, though. Kinda funny because hubby wanted this nice LCD TV, and it gets used for the Wii. We don't even have a DVD player hooked up to it. What we do is watch a lot of stuff on the computer, and can do so with the TV when DH is home to walk me through it.

any way, rambling, I know but I think what you mentioned is fine. If we got PBS to come in, I'd probably let my youngest two watch that for a while in the AM, to be honest. I watch one soap, too, but have resorted to watching it online, usually late at night.

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#7 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 06:39 PM
 
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I'd like to be down to once a week but currently we are at limited but everyday. It is mostly only movies because we are not hooked up. They do watch cartoons next door at their grandmothers though. Dh and I usually watch stuff on Hula or a dvd later at night when the kids are in bed.
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#8 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 06:46 PM
 
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We just stared tv yesterday (ds is 25months).

He gets to watch 'Your Baby can Read' for a total of 30min a day, broken up into 2-4 sessions. We chose the program because he is obsessed with reading and already knows some words! I watch it with him and he is doing actions and stuff the whole time

Before this, he has only watched a few min. at a time of golf/basketball/soccer when my dad watches - mostly he walks by and goes "OHHHH a BALL!", and then carries on with whatever else he was doing...kinda funny!

I actually tried to get him to watch a baby sign language thing when he was around 15months, but he wouldnt even look at the TV, so I didnt bother to try again until now. I'd rather him not watch tv until he turned 2 anyways, and only something that has a point to it.
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#9 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 06:54 PM
 
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how long at a stretch does she watch tv (just curious). what is her attention span?

dd watched tv from 3 months old. that's the only way her dad could calm her down.

however we are a family that does not limit at all. however we are a family that does not watch tv either. its there for movies.

at 20 months we barely had time for tv. it was a by the wya thing. not a regular thing at all. yet there could be times she watched for a long time. and then not at all for months.

but in dd's 7 years she has never watched tv or done computer on a regular basis. or everyday.

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#10 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 07:07 PM
 
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The movie would cross the line for me too - partly because they're so darned LONG. Essentially, she watches 2 hours of TV (I don't count the soap, really). That's a lot for a 20 month old. Technically, kids under 2 are supposed to have NO TV. We held out with ds until close to 2, but dd (being #2) was exposed earlier.

Our kids are 5 and 8 and 2 hours of screen time is their absolute maximum.

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#11 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 07:15 PM
 
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You didn't have my option, which is that we have no TV but I watch DVDs on the computer now and then and the kids have a weekly movie night.

They can also earn up to 40 minutes of screen time per week which they can spend on the weekends. (They watch old TV shows and cartoons on Hulu.)

But this only started when they were 5 and 8. Before that they had no screen time at our house, ever.
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#12 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 07:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I didn't actually know there set and firm rules, that is news to me, but I guess it's good to know.

When the sesame street is on she is only really tuned in during Elmo's world. We are doing breakfast cooking and are in and out of the room but when EW comes on she is into it.
The movie thing is rarely a whole movie because she is not going to be interested for the whole 1:20 or whatever. Sometimes I will stop it and then the next day start it where she left off. Sometimes she knows what she wants to watch and sometimes she doesn't want to watch at all anymore.

I used to feel really bad about the TV thing, it was during the winter here in CO. and I am not an outdoors in the cold type of gal. So I was entertaining a 1yo with movies and shows and she was getting hooked, but the summer has killed that and she really never demands to watch anything.

I still feel grateful for the time after her nap because I am usually wrapped up in something online(I work from the computer and am "working" right now, actually) and need that little time to finish whatever I am doing. But I could lose it, the computer ain't going nowhere!
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#13 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 07:18 PM
 
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At my DD age were kinda around these two choices we are aware, but don't
Quote:
really limit, we just like to do other things more
we don't limit usage, but we do police the content
My DD actually has her own TV it was the guest room now its hers and while orginally it was there just to show the occasional video we now have it hooked up to our satalite its set to only get a few stations Noggin which shes pretty much outgrown, PBS, boomarang (shes likes popeye and tom and jerry ) and Discovery kids which is her prefered station and there are parental locks on any thing below a G rating and PPV blocks (JIC) We are a TV family as in we enjoy some shows and find occasional TV watching relaxing and not overly stimulating.. However its not our center life DD for example is in school or playign with her friends a heck of a lot more than watching TV sure there are the occsional days when its 114 outside every friend seems busy.... but overall it works well for us.

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#14 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 07:19 PM
 
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My DS watches far, far, far more TV than I would like. I would prefer minimal-to-no TV, but at the moment he's probably sitting in front of the screen for 4-5 hours a day
Until recently, he wasn't interested in it at all. And he's not interested in toys - at all. He seems unable to engage in any activities/playing unless I'm very actively playing with him. And now that I have a newborn, I just can't play as much as I used to. So he's started watching TV instead And even if he's not watching it, if I turn it off, he starts tantruming. I'm at a loss. I guess I could just turn it off and endure the non-stop tantrums, but since we have 8 tantrums before breakfast anyway, I'm not really all that keen on deliberating inducing more.
I'm sad about it, and worried .... worried about the excessive TV watching, but also worried about his lack of play skills (which, BTW, definitely preceeded the TV watching, so one did NOT cause the other). But I've gone completely OT ... sorry!

ETA to clarify: not that this makes it better in terms of total screen time, but it's DVD's my son is watching, not actual TV.

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#15 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 07:20 PM
 
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At home the kids only watch pre-recorded stuff (nothing broadcast). In the winter, it wasn't everyday, but during the week it was about an hour a day most days, and usually none on weekends (so four or five hours a week). In the last two months though, they've watched no television at all at our house. They haven't even asked.

At grandma's house, it's a different story. Both grandparents turn on the kiddie channel (PBS Kids, Treehouse, etc) and leave it on. This makes me insane.

I'm okay with TV consumed in moderation, but I want the kids to watch with a plan, not languish in front of the screen for hours. At our house, you decide that you want to watch two episodes of Word World. you a have plan for what you will do when Word World is over, and you follow through.

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#16 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 07:37 PM
 
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When DD was that age, TV was kind of a white noise/background thing. She might have focused on certain shows for a bit (Dora the Explorer-- I know she paid some attention, because she could say the Spanish words without prompting) but for the most part, she was off doing other things. I just made sure whatever was on (sometimes, just the music choice channels on Time-Warner-- more like radio than anything) was "kid friendly."

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#17 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 07:41 PM
 
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That sounds like a little too much, but my kids watch more than that these days. We don't television shows at all, but we do watch DVDs. I used to keep it to one a day, max (many days, we didn't watch any), and would frequently steer them to shorter movies, such as Dumbo.

When I got pregnant with Aaron, I found myself resorting to more movies, because I was so tired. After he died, we watched a lot of movies - some days, we watched as many as four. Then, we backed off again. While I was pregnant with dd2, I was totally exhausted, and we started watching more again. She's two months old today, and I'm still having trouble getting around, but I'm getting to where I'm trying to cut back again. DD1 is sick today, so we've already watched two. We may watch one more this evening. But, we're gradually becoming less dependent on the stupid thing again. I know they're watching too much.

We don't limit for content much. There are lines we won't cross, but they're farther out than where a lot of people draw them. Occasionally, we rent something that turns out to be more violent or something than we expected it to be. If the kids aren't bothered, we leave it on. If they are, we don't. But, they've all seen all the Star Wars, Indiana Jones and LOTR movies...so not exactly what most would call age appropriate, yk?

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#18 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 07:44 PM
 
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Ds watches about 30 mins of a cartoon in the early am (he has to wake up early for school and says it helps him - he sleeps through most of it!)

And then I don't really limit. I don't have to. When he comes home from school he likes to play legos, or with toys in his room. He does not usually turn on the tv for a few hours - by then his friends are home and he's goes out to play with them.

He will play a video game sometimes with dh before the bedtime routine. On weekends he watches/plays more because it allows us to sleep in. But I don't really worry - so much of the time he turns the tv on, but leaves the room and plays with his toys, etc.

If I had a kid that was glued to the tv, I'm sure I'd feel different. But he's pretty good a self regulation, so I we don't monitor much at all.

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#19 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 07:46 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mistymama View Post
If I had a kid that was glued to the tv, I'm sure I'd feel different. But he's pretty good a self regulation, so I we don't monitor much at all.
This is true. I never really thought much about tv with ds1, because he really wasn't that interested. He occasionally got really into something, but he didn't just sit and watch it. (That was his dad - we fought a lot about the tv being on all. the. freaking. time.)

DD1 was similar, but wasn't exposed to as much tv, in the first place. DS2 is my tv junkie...and unfortunately, he's also the one who has watched the most. I've resorted to it too much, because it works. The "electronic babysitter" never worked on ds1, because he'd wander off and start doing something else.

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#20 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 07:47 PM
 
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That's a lot of tv for a 20mo. Ds is almost 2 and has only ever seen one movie (Milo and Otis) in about 15 minute segments. And that is maybe once or twice a week. We have no commercial televison reception so that's it. He likes to lollygag when waking, too, and I'll put a couple favorite soft toys or books next to him and he'll play quietly until he's ready to join the rest of the house.
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#21 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 07:57 PM
 
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Are you asking in terms of putting on a show specifically for your kid? Or just having it on for you when DC happens to be in a room?

We have the tv on a lot, but not for DS and he really doesn't pay much attention to it. And honestly, if it were up to me, I probably would hardly ever turn it on at all. When I was home with DS I hardly ever had the tv on during the day.... maybe once every 2 weeks I would put on a talk show for an hour and say to myself, "Look at me! I'm a stereotypical SAHM watching a talk show! Cool!"

At night DH always has the tv on (and I am much more likely to watch, too.)

Every morning I do turn on the weather channel for a few minutes. DS likes the music they play in the background of the doppler radar.

We NEVER put on a show specifically for DS. Maybe twice he and I watched PBS cartoons for a few minutes, but that's all. SIL and BIL keep trying to get us into Baby Einstein, but I could care less about that stuff. DS is learning plenty by trying to eat my measuring cups all the time.

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#22 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 07:57 PM
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Whoa, ANY television is too much for a 20month old. And yours gets up to 5 hours a day?!

Here's the AAP explaining why they say NO tv for kids under 2yo. http://www.aap.org/sections/media/toddlerstv.htm
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#23 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 08:02 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by New View Post
Whoa, ANY television is too much for a 20month old. And yours gets up to 5 hours a day?!

Here's the AAP explaining why they say NO tv for kids under 2yo. http://www.aap.org/sections/media/toddlerstv.htm
I presume this was directed at me, not the OP, but if you read my post correctly, you'll notice that I'm perfectly aware that he's watching far too much TV, and I'm concerned about it. But thank you for your constructive advice on how to improve the situation.

Incidentally, since I don't live in America, I couldn't care less what the AAP thinks, and my son is 2.5, not under 2.

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#24 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 08:08 PM
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I presume this was directed at me, not the OP, but if you read my post correctly, you'll notice that I'm perfectly aware that he's watching far too much TV, and I'm concerned about it. But thank you for your constructive advice on how to improve the situation.

Incidentally, since I don't live in America, I couldn't care less what the AAP thinks, and my son is 2.5, not under 2.
I was talking to the OP (who has a 20month old child watching Sesame Street every day, a soap opera most days, and a movie every day - 4 to 5 hours total), but glad my post helped you, too. After all, just because an Academy of Pediatrics is based in the U.S. doesn't mean their advice isn't relevant to Canadian kids. Their info can help you understand WHY tv is concerning. I see you edited your post to say he's mostly watching DVDs instead of tv, but if you Google a bit you'll see why that's just as alarming/dangerous for young brains - the content and ads aren't the only problem with screen time.

As for advice: turn it off.
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#25 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 08:11 PM
 
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Originally Posted by New View Post
I was talking to the OP (20month old child who watch Sesame Street every day, a soap opera most days, and a movie every day - 4 to 5 hours total), but glad my post helped you, too. After all, just because an Academy of Pediatricians is based in the U.S. doesn't mean their advice isn't relevant to Canadian kids. Their info can help you understand WHY tv is concerning.
The OP didn't say a soap opera "most" days. She also didn't say a movie every day. And, if you add up Sesame Street, a soap opera, and a movie, you get somewhere between 3-4 hours, not 4-5 hours. She also didn't specify what kind of movie, and there are movies that come in at not much over an hour, as opposed to 2 or 2+.

It is a lot of tv, but it's not 5 hours.

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#26 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 08:16 PM
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The OP didn't say a soap opera "most" days. She also didn't say a movie every day. And, if you add up Sesame Street, a soap opera, and a movie, you get somewhere between 3-4 hours, not 4-5 hours. She also didn't specify what kind of movie, and there are movies that come in at not much over an hour, as opposed to 2 or 2+.

It is a lot of tv, but it's not 5 hours.
Quote:
Originally Posted by OP
I let DD(20mos.) watch sesame street every morning. I watch one soap opera a few times a week if I am putting her down for her nap(I hold her and she has her bottle). A lot of times when she wakes up from her nap she is very lazy and likes to watch a movie.
That is WAY too much tv. The right amount for OP's child is "none."
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#27 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 08:18 PM
 
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Abby was tv free until 2, then when I got pregnant, she watched 30-60 minutes per day. This went on until about 3 months ago (she is 4.5 now) and we started a Church Day Movie thing. So, right now, she only watches a movie once a week. I just had to DO it. Turn the thing off, and entertain her during dd2's nap time instead of putting a movie on. It was hard at first, but lo and behold, she started playing on her own MUCH more often!! Most Sundays she forgets about the movie anyway, so it's about 2-3 times per month. I'm amazed at how much even that 30 minutes per day was affecting her, and the difference I see now. She will happily play alone for an hour (during dd2's nap) in her room setting up her little doll house or her stuffies.
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#28 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 08:20 PM
 
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I was talking to the OP (who has a 20month old child watching Sesame Street every day, a soap opera most days, and a movie every day - 4 to 5 hours total), but glad my post helped you, too. After all, just because an Academy of Pediatrics is based in the U.S. doesn't mean their advice isn't relevant to Canadian kids. Their info can help you understand WHY tv is concerning. I see you edited your post to say he's mostly watching DVDs instead of tv, but if you Google a bit you'll see why that's just as alarming/dangerous for young brains - the content and ads aren't the only problem with screen time.

As for advice: turn it off.
then I must have read the OP wrong. I thought it added up to more like one-two hrs, with the occasional movie. Also, I assumed the LO wasn't really watching the soap... at least mine would be in and out of the room, maybe glancing at it here and there.

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#29 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 09:03 PM
 
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That is WAY too much tv. The right amount for OP's child is "none."
I never said it wasn't too much, or even way too much. I said it's not 5 hours.

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then I must have read the OP wrong. I thought it added up to more like one-two hrs, with the occasional movie. Also, I assumed the LO wasn't really watching the soap... at least mine would be in and out of the room, maybe glancing at it here and there.
The OP later clarified that her dd often doesn't watch the whole "1:20 or whatever" of the movie. So, we're not talking 2 hour movies, and her dd often isn't watching the whole thing, either. The dd is also in and out of the room for much of Sesame Street.

I think this is too much tv (although, as I said, it's still less than what we frequently watch, but we're easing back), but it's nowhere near 5 hours a day. I know kids who watch 5 hours a day, or more, and their day is nothing like what's described in the OP.

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#30 of 144 Old 08-26-2009, 09:07 PM
 
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I voted no tv ever, because my dd is 14 months old and never watches tv. I don't know when we will be introducing it, but I think at 20 months we will still be TV free. My dh wants to watch TV with her sometimes, but I said she is still too little.

SAHM to Chloe«- 6/2008 (10 lbs, 5 oz), Hannah- 9/2010 (9 lbs, 12 oz), Liam- 2/2013 (9 lbs, 6 oz)

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