I really liked the suggestion some of you made about getting a DVD player for the trip I'll be going on, the one where I will be trying to contain a toddler for hours and hours and hours and hours. I'd had it in my head that the only way to have a DVD player in the car was to buy a car with a DVD player already installed. Then, when you guys mentioned purchasing the DVD player sans vehicle, I looked into it and found that hey! you can BUY these things! Furthermore, my dad thinks he might be able to rig his portable DVD player somehow, and he has made it his mission to make something work. So--thanks! I don't mind telling you I'm a big fan of television, especially in its child-muzzling capacity.
Anyway, this got me thinking about children's DVDs, and what I could stand to be trapped in a car with. There are certain children's shows that would motivate me to fling myself out of the moving car, thanking the gods of momentum and gravity for the privilege. The first few notes of Barney, for example, make me run for the remote yelling "LA LA LA LA LA LA LA" to keep any sound from entering my brain. I don't care if he does have the best clean-up song ever, he's horrible, and so are those child actors. Someone must be holding those children's parents at knifepoint right in front of them to elicit such strained and vigorously cheerful performances.
And Caillou. I don't think I have ever heard such irritating whining. And Maya and Miguel, with their whole "He thinks with his brain! She thinks with her heart and with her sparkly twirling ponytail! Because she's a silly girl!" And the newly-formatted Sesame Street, with "Journey to Ernie" and "Elmo's World" taking over all the good stuff.
Well. I enjoy anything that gives me an excuse to buy things I've been wanting to buy anyway, and I was thinking this trip would be a good excuse to buy those "old school" Sesame Street episodes that have started coming out on DVD. I might also buy some Blue's Clues. Do I have to specify that they'd be the ones with Steve? Of course they'd be the ones with Steve. We have a bunch of Blue's Clues episodes on videotapes that are totally legal, legitimately purchased, not at all taped off the TV--but we have nothing on DVD. I wish there were more than just a couple of episodes per DVD, though. If someone were to tape onto their own videotapes, for example, they might get more like 15 episodes per tape. I'm just saying if.
Successful and non-irritating DVDs we already own are:
1) Baby Bach, Baby Mozart, and Baby Beethoven from the some-good-some-bad Baby Einstein series. These are good because the background sound is mostly just classical music, rather than hyper piping voices or "the FISH song! Fish-fish-fish! fish-fish-fish! fish-fish-fish-fish-fish!" And I can look away from the screen when Little Miss "I Think of Myself as a Hand Model" is on, or when they're doing the not-exactly-Jim-Henson-quality puppetry.
2) Schoolhouse Rock! I never saw these as a child, but Paul did, and I've really been enjoying the 30th Anniversary Edition he insisted we buy. It has all the songs, and you can watch them by category (grammar, government, etc.) or you can put it on shuffle mode so it plays them in random order. I've never been so close to understanding how our government, circulatory, and banking systems work. It's way too old for a 2-year-old, but our resident nearly-2-year-olds don't seem bothered by that--they like the animation and the music.
3) They Might Be Giants have a kid DVD called Here Come the ABCs, and it is great. We bought the DVD/CD combo pack so we can listen to the music in the car and watch the DVD at home. The kids like it, we like it, everyone's happy.
Okay, spill: tell me the children's shows you hate, and the ones you love. My credit card is itching for action, and I have such a good excuse for using it.
Life-improving products, part 4 - (Continued from part 1, part 2, and part 3.) Stearns Youth Life Vest (photo from Amazon.com). I’d been too scared to take the kids to any body of water oth...