Just Heather

Earlier this week, I did an interview on my reasons for not letting my tween daughter see New Moon this weekend. As it turns out, the article was for CNN. I had no idea. I also had no idea people would view my decision as something bad. In the comments, I have been called a cruel, controlling cougar. Okay, one comment, but it has several Likes so there are obviously people who agree with Krista.

I am, quite honestly, shocked that anyone would disagree with me. The movie is rated PG-13 and based on a “young adult” novel. My daughter is only 11. It seems only logical that I would have to make a parental decision on the matter and assert some authority as her mother. In fact, I have trouble understanding the parents who let their children read the books or watch the movies without any personal knowledge of the content.

I have read the entire series—10 times. I, obviously, love it but that doesn’t make it automatically appropriate for a child. I love Cosmos too but you don’t see me passing them out at family dinner. Twilight is quite tame, as is New Moon, really. The Volturi are creepy & scary, sure, but she has enjoyed Aliens and Poltergeist so that is not an issue. She’s also read the entire Harry Potter series and seen the movies (in fact, she’s watching one now on a sick day) so the fantasy thing is clearly not an issue.

Where I take issue is with Eclipse, as the content turns more adult. Bella faces decisions about premarital sex and teen marriage. In Breaking Dawn, her struggles expand to include the topic of abortion. Yes, I’ve discussed all of these with her but that doesn’t mean she’s ready to see them played out in her imagination or on screen. I did finally relent and let her read Twilight & New Moon, but I put my foot down on finishing the series. At least for a few years.

However, I was not willing to let her see this movie yet. Mostly, because there is always the chance with a book-based movie for content from later books to insert itself into earlier movies. I wasn’t sure how much of the above subjects would be a part of New Moon. As it turns out, the movie is actually quite accurate to the book. I was pleasantly surprised. We’ll probably let her see it when it comes out on DVD.

That’s called parenting. I see nothing cruel about letting children know some things were not meant for them. When did it become okay to let children make their own decisions. I either stand idly by while my daughter does whatever she wants or risk being called a mean mom and a helicopter parent. I tend to be fairly liberal about a lot of things. I think their dad and I do a pretty good job of finding middle ground—giving our children freedom as appropriate and reining them in when they need guidance.

Why is everything black or white with Mommy Wars? You either breastfeed or you don’t. You can work or stay at home. We draw so many lines about what is and isn’t a good mom. There doesn’t seem to be any recognition that every parent has different children and, therefore, will need to tailor their own decisions. I can’t even use the same parenting twice because I have 3 very unique girls! Is it really so hard to understand each child, situation and parent may need to make decisions unique to their circumstances?

The free summer film festival starts at our local theater in less than 2 weeks.  I’ve already gone over the list with the girls, allowing them to choose which of the 2 movies we’ll see each week.  Sure, we could see both but Wednesday is Water Day so a 2nd movie is only our rainy day backup.  Sometimes, they pick the same movie; sometimes, they pick separately.  That’s fine now that Stacia is older.  At eleven, she’s nearly babysitting age (which she reminds me constantly) so she’s perfectly capable of watching a movie in the theater next to mine.n506119855_1100465_5097

It appears they’ve picked several books turned movies this year. That means I have a lot of reading to do. I’m kind of obsessive about reading the book first, even when it’s ordinarily an author I wouldn’t choose. It doesn’t make a lot of sense, really, because it tends to make me hate the movie. Since I could never really hate anything that features Will Smith, I have learned to view them as separate entities. That helps a lot, as does lowering your expectations. If you go in expecting to see a beloved book come to life, you are bound to be disappointed. However, if you go in expecting to find a director has ruined your favorite story you may just be pleasantly surprised.

Still, a trip to the library is in order, and soon. I’m worried I’ve left it too late to snag copies, if they have any popularity at all. I have only 2 weeks to read Inkheart before the free showing, but over a month to finish Nim’s Island in time to watch with the girls. I may insist on a family reading of Charlotte’s Web before the kids see the movie again, but I have read it more than once. I guess I better get busy, even as I hope to talk them into a few selectionsthat don’t require homework.

When I was growing up, my father owned a small, regional chain of video rental stores. This means that my siblings and I grew up on movies. We have watched and rewatched movies most people have never heard of. Family classics include Clue, Harry and the Hendersons and The NeverEnding Story. We watched all the usual 80s favorites too—Dirty Dancing, The Breakfast Club, Ghostbusters—but there is nothing like the B movie classics.

Every now and then I’ll find an old family favorite on DVD in the dirt cheap (because who else wants it?) section. This weekend—on an emergency holiday liquor run—I picked up Three Amigos, Murder at 1600 and Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead. I’m excited to add them to our ever-growing DVD collection, though finding someone to watch them with me is quite a challenge. We recently counted no less than 30 DVDs on our shelves that we haven’t actually watched since their purchase.

We just finished catching up on the Harry Potter movies and today we are starting Back to the Future. That makes 5 movies down, but we still have a long way to go in watching all the movies we own. I’d say we need a buying hiatus for a bit, but we’ve bought 10 new DVDs in the last week so I don’t see that happening any time soon. You gotta love the $5 bin not to mention Best Buy Reward Zone.

You can usually find hubby and I camped out on the couch on Sunday afternoon, watching our beloved Colts. This year, we have 3 Monday games—including one late game the night before our daughter is scheduled to arrive. So with all that football on the brain, it should be no surprise that I noticed the Manning-Harrison tribute in The Longest Yard.

Sure, it could be a coincidence that Adam Sandler sported a number 18 jersey in his role as the quarterback. The fact that his practice jersey was blue and white could have been unintentional. I guess it could be yet another coincidence that his wide receiver sported the number 88, but on a blue and white jersey in the hodgepodge of colors? Somebody’s a Colts fan!

So in honor of my Colts and their Monday Night Football win—making us the only 6-0 team, I might add—I bring you this fun blonde joke. It’s okay; I used to be a blonde!

A guy took his girlfriend (a blonde) to her first football game. They had great seats right behind their team’s bench. After the game, he asked her if she had enjoyed the game.

Oh, I really liked it,” she replied, “especially the tight pants and all the big muscles, but I just couldn’t understand why they were killing each other over 25 cents.”

Dumbfounded, her date asked, “What do you mean?”

“Well, they flipped a coin, one team got it and then for the rest of the game, they all kept screaming: ‘Get the quarterback! Get the quarterback!’ I’m like…Helloooooo? It’s only 25 cents!”

I will admit to being part-geek, though I don’t come close to my Super!Geek husband. I’m pretty sure the Countdown to Serenity in my head coupled with my intense love of Star Wars—and the fact that I own a $200 lightsaber—qualifies me as half-geek. Our poor kids didn’t have a chance. Need proof, as all good geeks do?

We watched this really funny movie. It was rated E for Everyone!” ~Stacia