Despite not having a child in my household younger that 14 years old, I love to watch the adorable Australian animated show called ‘Bluey’. It is a series focussing on a blue heeler family with Bluey (6), her sister Bingo (4), along with parents Bandit (dad) and Chilli (mum) as well as a cast of other family and friends of various canine breeds. Each episode is 7 minutes long, contains a life lesson on a variety of subjects and I just love it.
Bluey and Bingo play amazing games with their parents and teach the importance of giving kids some of your precious time. The lessons they learn along the way about sharing and patience and tolerance and empathy are some of the best I have seen, and wish that many adults I interact with would take the time to learn as well!
There are many, many parenting lessons as well and I sometimes wish Bluey had been around 24 years ago as I began my motherhood journey. On the negative side, Bandit and Chilli do set up some pretty high ideals that I could well imagine my kids pressuring me with, “Bluey’s mum would do it”!!
I love the fact that there are plenty of ‘normal’ moments in Bluey. Any shots of the girls in their car seats reflects the disaster area most family cars have with food, stickers, pencils being everywhere. There are plenty of examples, too, of the parents being busy or frustrated or reticent to engage with their kids although they usually negotiate a compromise where everyone wins.
Bluey is now in it’s 3rd season and there are a number of high profile names lining up to be a voice for one of the animated characters. It’s a strange experience to be watching an episode and recognising a voice that is only on for sometimes less than a minute!
My favourite episode so far is one called ‘Pass the Parcel’ where Lucky’s dad is horrified to learn that the party game he grew up with has morphed into an ‘everyone wins’ alternative. (I can wholeheartedly relate). Episodes such as ‘Bike’, ‘Bumpy and the wise old wolfhound’, ‘Calypso’, ‘Takeaway’ and ‘Baby Race’ consistently rate highly on popularity polls. My 14 year old son’s favourite is one called ‘Ice Cream’. There is something to be learned from each episode and they are well worth taking a moment to check out.
What is the appeal of this little Australian show that has become an international phenomenon? I believe it lies in it’s simplicity and capacity to take ordinary life moments and depict real emotions and situations while also offering opportunities for the rest of us to feel ‘normal’. There are many moments in Bluey that I breathe a sigh of relief, grateful that others have obviously experienced similar interactions as we have.
Thinking about these ordinary moments reminds me of a lovely translation of Romans chapter 12 verse 1 which reads: “So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life— your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life— and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him.”
There are amazing life lessons we can learn and teach when we offer them for God to use to those who are watching. If there is one theme that runs through all episodes of Bluey it is that the little people in our lives are always watching and learning from us, whether we intend them to or not. What lessons are you teaching?
All the Bluey episodes can be viewed at http://www.iview.abc.net.au and I would warmly encourage you to take a moment out of your day today and learn a lesson from an ordinary moment, ‘for real life’.