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Teenagers, TV, and Comfort Food

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The care and feeding of teenagers is a tricky proposition. Yes, they want more food, but not *that* food. Yes, they want to talk, but not really about *that.* Yes, they want you to be there for them, but not *that* much. How do you get close enough and involved enough with your teen without pushing them away?

A new study by Netflix of more than 1,200 parents and teenagers in seven countries has found that watching the same TV shows as your teen can be a great way to connect with them.

Netflix Parenting Cheat Sheet
The study found that while 62% of parents think it’s tough to talk to teens, nearly all US parents (96%) feel that watching TV shows their kids are obsessing over will give them more to talk about – and 81% of teens agree. And when it comes to tough conversations (think sex, bullying and stress), parents (92%) and teenagers (63%) agree that watching the same shows could help start a dialogue. Plus, most teens (67%) even admit that having their parents watch their favorite shows could help them better understand what’s going on in their lives.
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

The graphic above has some ideas for you to watch with your teens, but we would definitely add to that list Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, which returns to Netflix on May 19. My teenager and I love Kimmy for her resilience, kindness, and unfailing optimism. We feel her pain through every cringe-worthy moment, and we love cheering her on for the little victories that keep her going.
And now for the really important question – What are you going to eat while you watch? I’ve got an idea – namely food that’s crave-able and comforting without being crazy-bad-for-you. This chocolate smoothie is my son’s favorite – and I’ve found that if I have one in hand when he gets home from his long day, it’s the perfect incentive to get him to sit down, maybe watch a show together, and have a decent conversation.
chocolate smoothie

Chocolate Smoothie
Author: 
Recipe type: Snack
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2 smoothies
 
A wholesome chocolate smoothie that fills your teenager with comfort and nutrients.
Ingredients
  • 1½ cups unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 T. peanut butter
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3 bananas, frozen and chopped
  • 1 T. caramel sauce (optional)
  • Whipped cream for topping
Instructions
  1. Pour the almond milk, peanut butter, and cocoa powder into a blender. Blend until smooth. Add the frozen bananas (and caramel sauce, if desired) and continue blending until smooth and frothy. To make the smoothie thicker, add more peanut butter or banana. Divide into two small cups. Top with whipped cream, if desired. Serve with a straw.

You don’t *need* to add caramel sauce, but we do sometimes to make it a little sweeter. Similarly, you don’t *need* whipped cream, but it adds a little festive touch, especially when your kid is coming home after a rough day.

Clink! Mom/teen “chat snack” is officially a success! Now bring on Kimmy!

Blogger disclosure: I am part of Netflix’ blogger Stream Team. Netflix has provided me with an annual subscription in exchange for monthly posts. I did not receive direct compensation for this post. All opinions expressed are my own.

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