No TV Update


I remember you mentioning a while back that you had gotten rid of your TV? (or at least cable?) I was wondering if that's something you are still doing, and if so, how has it changed your daily life? Do you miss it at all or do you feel the better for it? Share more about how that counter culture decision has impacted your family.

This is a great question, and I definitely owe you guys an update!

We still don’t have satellite TV.  We have been without satellite TV for about five months now.

I have to be honest and say that I still watch more TV than I probably should.  When I feel tired or just want to “veg out”, I end up putting a movie on.  I feel like I still need to work on this, because I think my time would be better spent reading than watching a movie.

That said, I watch way less TV than I used to now that we no longer have satellite TV.  I used to turn on the TV in the morning to watch something while I ate breakfast, and it would just end up staying on all day in the background while I did other things.  When I did this, Wyatt ended up watching the TV more than I wanted him to, and I feel like I was less productive than I could have been.  It also ended up being a huge time-waster for me, because sometimes I would get wrapped up in a show and spend more time than I meant to being completely lazy.

Now, if I do watch TV during the day it’s just a movie in the afternoon (not every day), or a movie or TV show episode on DVD with Derek at night (we still have a Netflix DVD-in-the-mail plan, but not instant streaming).

I feel like not having the satellite TV service available has given me the opportunity to let my creative juices flow.  I like that I’m doing more DIY projects or writing more, instead of watching TV, or even just having the distraction of having the TV on.  Derek and I definitely spend more time playing games together than we used to, because even though we could watch a movie, we don’t have new OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA         movies or shows to watch on-demand.  I love that we spend more time playing games together – we have a lot of fun.

I still feel like I need to be more intentional about not watching movies in the evenings though.  We watch less TV in the evenings than we used to, but there is still room for improvement.  Derek would probably watch less TV than we do right now, but sometimes I just feel like I want a break and we end up watching a movie.  The room for improvement is mostly with me, because TV is my time to just sit down, rest, and not have to think for a while, but I could find healthier ways of accomplishing those things. 

If we wanted to go all the way with this, we would get rid of Netflix and that would force us to cut down even more, but I don’t think we’re quite ready to do that yet.  We may consider it in the future.

I do think that not getting satellite TV has made both Derek and me more sensitive to inappropriate references or situations on TV.  Commercials these days are getting ridiculous.  There is still some of that in some movies, but we have a lot more control over the movies we watch than the commercials that come on. 

If we decide to stick with this long-term (we’re still trying to make that decision), this would be a major benefit, because I love that Wyatt wouldn’t grow up seeing that stuff on TV.  If we do get satellite again in the future, I think I’m going to implement a strict no-tv-while-the-kids-are-awake rule when they are little, and just let them watch pre-approved (by me) movies.  But then, what’s the point of that?  Derek and I mostly like watching movies anyway, and Netflix takes care of that, so we don’t really need satellite TV service.

I can’t say we never miss having satellite TV, because sometimes we do miss watching certain things, like football games, or the news.  I’ll probably end up spending election day at my parent’s house next year so I can watch the coverage. My one show that I miss watching is “19 Kids And Counting” – I like keeping up with what the Duggars are doing.  But aside from those things, I don’t think we’d go back to it, at least not right now.  We have our moments, but in the end we are kind of enjoying this time of not having satellite TV.

Please let me know if you have any other questions for me about this!

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Unknown said...

We had family friends in 2010 give up TV fr a year completely. They spent their evenings reading, going out, doing projects etc. I found it mad but they say their relationship is much better because of it!

HIS daughter said...

I LOVE the duggars! We don't have tv but youtube has almost ALL the episodes which is pretty neat :)

Rachel and John said...

Awesome post Callie. We've been thinking about getting rid of cable and getting netflix but we just haven't followed through yet. We need to get the ball rolling!

Lauren said...

very interesting! glad to see that you're finding it work fairly well for you guys!

we're definitely going to have to monitor the amount of time the tv is on very soon! Elyse definitely doesn't need to be subjected to all that junk!

Stephanie said...

We had a situation a couple of years back come up that made my husband I both really sensitive to the trash on TV. We still watch TV, it is something we just simply enjoy, but like you it really is just background noise for me. However, I do notice we are much more careful about what is on... I think until you take the time to really pay attention to some of the trashy content, jokes, commments, you just don't realize what you are letting seep into your everyday life! Good post :)


Venessa said...

we got rid of our cable about 2 years ago and have not looked back. Although, i feel like we also watch more than we should with movies and netflix. We miss some things about it like sports channels but not enough to ever go back. And the money that is saved is an added bonus!

Katie said...

We've been one year without cable and I love it! We do have Netflix streaming on the wii, but I find that now that I have to make a conscious effort to get it on, up and running, and pick something, we watch it WAY less. I love it!

Jessica said...

Wow, I so respect you guys for doing this! I want to decrease our TV-watching time, too. Especially when we have kids.

Anne said...

We just cut our cable and I'm so glad. We still have basic cable (the network channels and a few public access channels) but I'm really hoping this helps us to be more creative and intentional with how we spend our time together.

Tatiana said...

We considered getting rid of satellite for expense reasons. I know I would miss it a lot. And I'm actually kind of sad that I care enough about it to miss it.
Funny thing is, most shows I watch don't require satellite.
I'm glad you feel like your time is spent a lot wiser now :-)

Nicole said...

We haven't had cable since before getting married. But we do get the basics, like pbs, nbc, abc, etc... and we have Netflix instant. For us, it's the perfect balance. And you shouldn't feel bad for watching SOME tv... t's the way I relax too. I need that down time, no thinking time... and nothing else gives me that. If I'm reading or on the computer, I can't really relax, ya know?!

Rachel said...

All the five years we've been married we've never had television service, which has suited us just fine. We do have a tv, and we do watch a movie EVERY now and then. I don't like all the garbage on tv anyways, and like you I definetly don't want my boys watching it!

Melanie said...

Its amazing how much time and energy goes into watching tv! We have satellite here and everything but when we go on vacation we usually dont have tv and you know what..its not missed one single bit!! I'm with you though..I love me some Duggars!!!

LeAnna said...

Way to go, guys! I don't think we'll ever get a tv service. We have Netflix instant streaming, and honestly we mostly use it for kids shows (they have almost all the Veggie Tales, and the old cartoons and classics, which I like for the kids...) I know I also feel like we watch way too much tv. I've really been working on limiting and setting boundaries for how much the kids watch.
I think more young families should be conscientious about what they (and their children) watch. We've had friends over to our house, and requested that we stop watching certain movies simply because of the language content. It may be "mild" to some, but we just won't have it in our home. That being said, keep up the good work, girl!

Oh! Have you checked out Hulu? I've been watching it to see if The Pioneer Womans foodnetwork show will air on it.

Melissa said...

I used to be the biggest TV addict. When i married a man that didn't have a TV at all (& my roomie got our old TV), I was like, "NO!!!" Haha. But you get used to it. I insisted we buy a TV with Walmart gift cards we got for the wedding, b/c even though we didn't want a cable bill, I knew I'd want to watch movies. So we did get the TV, but we hardly ever turn it on. Not even for movies! We tend to find a TV series we want to watch. We watched LOST & later, Big Bang Theory. But one show is better than 10! I used to just watch everything.

Now, I am watching Grey's on Netflix (streaming) & that's all i watch. I started this a few weeks ago & prior to that hadn't watched anything at all since May.

From a former TV addict: you really do get used to not having it on. I don't mind that i watch one show. But i am so glad it's typically quiet here.

Rachel said...

We decided not to bother with a TV when we got married and we've now gone four years without one. I don't miss it at all.

We use the internet a lot for watching movies and TV catch-up, but because it's on the laptop I mostly just catch up with my favourite shows while I'm cooking or ironing or something. I watch a lot less trash than if I was just channel hopping with a TV.

Do the TV channels in America have iplayers on the net so you can watch things after they've shown on TV? Most channels do here in the UK.

Ashlee J said...

Switching to no TV is hard when you've been used to it for so long. When we moved to this house 6 months ago we needed to save money so we chose not to get cable and we haven't had it since. It's definitely an adjustment. We just have the basic news channels that come in via antenna and it can be frustrating, particularly on the weekends. We do have netflix instant streaming, but it definitely forces you to do other things which is good :)

Andee Flynn said...

Me too! We got rid of our cable tv several months ago- only do Netflix(though we do have streaming) but the only show I miss is 19 kids and counting! Im with ya though- I don't miss it at all!

engineer's wife said...

What an interesting set if comments! I also We stopped watching tv about three yeara ago. My husband watches major news when he is away from home but i dont watch anything. As a stay at home mommy of a 17 and 2 year old i just dont find anything that would glorify the Lord on tv. My little one does get to watch 30 minutes of Thomas the train on video each day. We spend our time reading, doing crafts, playing and riding our bikes to the park. I sense the peace that only the Lord can provide throughout our home as we have time to draw near to Him as a family and not around a tv. This is what works for us. I know that the Lord has different plans and goals for

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