Our 24-hour flight to Malaysia is in two weeks. Bright side—tropical vacation and family reunion. Flip side—did I mention a 24-hour plane ride? Each way? With an active toddler?! If that doesn't fill you with dread, you're a better person than I am.
Our plan to turn her into a TV robot, where she sits hypnotized for many hours in front of the screen, serves no other purpose than to give us some kind of peace on the flight. Sadly, we are about a month into her...uhm..."training" and Little Miss is still not hooked. What’s wrong with her? She knows how to sign “TV” and even asks for it but when we turn it on, she sits still for maybe five minutes until some furniture lint catches her eye and off she goes.
We’ve tried a few different kids' DVDs so far, and I don't know about Little Miss but our favorite is They Might Be Giants’ kids album, "Here Come the 123's" (infectious and fun, such as the one below). My Guy and I occasionally find ourselves humming a tune at different parts of the house only to come together and realize we’re singing the same song from the DVD in our heads. Little Miss also sings along with it (one of the songs starts with papapapapapa, and she joins in with her own “pa pa pa pa”) so this DVD has great potential. We also have a Barney DVD still in its plastic wrap as a last, last, last, last, last, last resort. I just can’t bring myself to unleash the purple monstrosity on my child—so sweet, so innocent. How will she ever recover from that? Or rather, how will we?
For someone who didn’t grow up watching Saturday morning cartoons and educational programs here in the States, the quest for decent kids’ programs is not easy. When I was a kid, we only had two TV channels in Malaysia until I turned 10, when they introduced the God-sent TV3 that brought me the Smurfs, Tiny Toons and Robotech. Before that, I was watching Chinese soaps with my aunt, educational in a “this is nothing like the real world” kind of way.
In our attempt to make a TV addict out of our child, we’ve been bringing our portable DVD player with us even on short trips in the car just to get her used to it. Now, every time she gets in, she signs “TV" – progress! We are proud parents.
You’re probably thinking: what kind of parents are they?! We’re thinking: Twenty. Four. Hours. Each. Way.