Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Our Family Met a 2012 Resolution: We ditched Cable TV and our Phone Landline

We cut out a huge expense earlier in 2012 when we ditched our cable tv plan and phone landline.

We so rarely used our landline. In fact, the only people who ever called us on our landline were telemarketers. I kept the landline in case of emergency, thinking, what if there were an emergency and my cell phone was not charged up/I couldn't find it? But since my smartphone is my lifeline, it is always charged and always nearby. Likewise, my son, age 11, has a cell phone because coordinating his afterschool activities, pick-ups and drop-offs was becoming difficult, and he's even more responsible than me when it comes to keeping it well-charged. There is always a cellphone charged and ready to go in our home. So... I cancelled our landline plan, and we haven't missed it one bit.

Then I slowly began to realize that our family no longer watches tv. We do have one tv in our home, but no one was ever watching it. We prefer to catch our favorite shows online, and have a $7.99/month Netflix streaming plan for watching movies, but I'm even pondering canceling that, as most everything we watch nowadays is available online for free or can be downloaded on iTunes. 

My daughter, age 3, has pretty much grown up tv-free. She might watch one Scholastic Story short DVD, or catch a Donald Duck cartoon from youtube, but she is never glued to a tv or a computer. I try to have her watch her cartoons in her second language (Italian). But tv is not background noise in her life, and there is no tv in our main living or her main play areas to flip on in case of boredom. 

Though I am an extreme Downton Abbey, Mad Men, and Call the Midwife fan, other than the Grantham and Crawley families, Don Draper, and the midwives of Nonnatus House, I don't like watching other people live their lives on tv. I'd rather live my life (there's enough drama!) and enjoy watching my own family. This might sound smug - check out this hilarious take on giving up tv here - but it's true for me! And more importantly, I'd like my kids to enjoy their real lives more than the lives of other on screen. 

Has your family cut out cable? a landline? How has your experience been?

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