To DVD or not to DVD?

      To quote Justin Bieber, Never say never. OK, he TMs not the only one to spout that particular clich, but I have 12-year-old twin girls, so he TMs the first to come to mind.

      When DVD players first started showing up in vehicles, I swore I would never have one. Driving time is family time. That TMs when you catch up on the day, share what TMs going on and keep in the loop. We TMve traditionally spent long drives playing games, swapping stories, laughing and yes, squabbling too.

      This January, we found ourselves in the market for a new minivan, to replace our clunker. I initially refused the DVD player, but these days, it TMs practically standard equipment in a van. The dealer was going to have to search for a vehicle without one.

      Since then, we TMve used our DVD player as a novelty just a handful of times, like on trips to St. Louis. As our family packed for a recent 15-hour trip to Florida, I decided to bring along some DVDs just in case.

      It was about an hour into our drive when our two-year-old Audrey started in.

      Audrey: Dad, I want to drive.

      Dad: Sorry honey, you can TMt drive.

      Audrey: Because why?

      Dad: Because you TMre not old enough.

      Audrey: But I WANT to drive.

      Dad: Nope.

      Audrey: BUT I WANT TO DRIVE!

      Mom: If you drive, the police will pull you over and send you to juvie.

      Audrey: What TMs juvie? I want to go to juvie.

      Mom: Juvie is for really naughty kids.



      Yep, the DVD came in handy. It was made even easier by the availability of Red Box. You can find one on every corner practically. For a buck, the kids were entertained with a new video for 90 minutes.

      The DVD got about six hours of play on our way to Florida. We still had plenty of family time. We also had the threat of no further videos if the kids continued to bicker. That was pretty handy too. I don TMt think I TMll ever allow the kids to pop in a show when I pick them up from school or on other short trips. I still believe that is valuable conversation time. But again, the day might come when the kids put me over the top and I TMll be searching for the Elmo video. Never say never!

      Take care ~Sarah D.