January 23, 2013

What to Watch With Your Kids: Olive Us

I always struggle with the proper balance of screen time for my preschooler. My husband and I generally lean toward keeping her exposure fairly limited. Like most things with kids, we think (hope) that if it comes in measured amounts it will be constructive in all the right ways. For example, she is obsessed with the iPad. So, when we let her play with it we make sure she gets engaged with an age-appropriate learning game. We were pretty psyched when she got interested in maps based on Stack the States and she ended up asking for a globe for her birthday.  As for movies, she likes all the normal ones for her age. I can never deny her the classic Mary Poppins late on a snowy Saturday afternoon. I remember loving that movie as much as she does. It is especially poignant for me when she dances around the room to the soundtrack and sings the songs from memory.

Lemonade Stand from Olive Us on Vimeo.

To that end I’ve become totally enamored with the Olive Us web series by Design Mom. I have to admit, we started watching Season 1 long before I even knew the Mom, aka Gabrielle Blair, was a blogger. A fellow Babble blogger, no less. Ooops! Now I’ve become addicted to reading the Design Mom website as well. Anyway, my daughter and I have watched every single episode multiple times and I frequently post them on my Facebook page to encourage you all to do the same. These cute five minute vignettes chronicle the six Blair children and their adventures in France and Colorado. I love that they focus on interesting children-centric activities in a way that motivates the watcher to get up and go try it herself. For example, my daughter has already made hand cookies with her own Mere-Mere and she is begging me to find a farm where we can collect our own eggs. Once we are done with that she would like to try her hand at pottery. Whew – I am tired just thinking about it! But I am psyched to see her interested in all of these cool topics.

Above you’ll find our favorite episode about the lemonade stand. I already have a string of real burgees and my brother’s old railroad lanterns set aside for next summer when I’m sure you’ll find us on our corner setting up something similar!