A quick tip on a busy day:

On occasion view You Tube videos with your kids.  It can be a great way to bond with them.  My daughters recently found a You Tube video that was a compilation of old 80’s music videos.  They called me into the room to watch it because they thought I “might like to take a walk down memory lane.”  It was fun to watch, but the fun really began when I started naming songs and artists that weren’t a part of the compilation and they typed the names in to view whatever videos might be available.

There was laughter when they saw Boy George and shrieks when they saw Twisted Sister.  We took a look at Devo, Tears For Fears, Depeche Mode, Journey, Foreigner, Styx, Duran Duran, Oingo Boingo, Queen, ZZ Top, Kiss and many more.  We laughed so hard at some of the videos we had tears coming out of our eyes.

“O M G Mom, the 80’s were hilarious!”

And it isn’t just music videos we’ve viewed together.  We have been struck by the talent of a six year old guitar player.  We’ve wondered how another little boy can know so much about vacuum cleaners.  We have been touched by stories of people overcoming great odds.  And we’ve laughed at a sneezing panda. 

One video of a guy driving down a highway on a motorcycle while texting prompted a conversation about what NOT to do while driving.  So much of what the kids find to view on You Tube can be a conversation starter. 

I don’t advocate spending hours and hours on the computer.  I prefer my kids and step kids to choose other activities, but I have learned that if I hear, “Hey Mom, come look at this,” it is something they really do want to share with me and I should take the time to go see.  It has been a safe way to bond with my stepkids.  Sharing a laugh about something builds good memories.  And I don’t always wait for the kids to find things to show me.  Sometimes I find things that I think are worth sharing and then I call everyone in to see.  We based an entire Family Home Evening lesson on a You Tube video that I found once.  Another time I pulled up Blue Man Group so the kids could see parts of a show that Hub and I had attended but the kids hadn’t.  It piqued their interest and if Blue Man Group ever comes back into town they may want to earn some money for tickets.

Embracing what kids today are interested in can help in forging a bond and in building a relationship.  I once wrote a post about texting teens as a way to bond.  Joining them on You Tube occasionally will do the same thing.  Laughing at those old 80’s videos with my daughters is now one of my favorite memories.  I hope they can say the same.

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