12/01/2012 07:29 GMT | Updated 12/03/2012 05:12 GMT

The Telly and the Cardboard Box

You might not quite believe this story, but it is based on real life.

The protagonists are three 21st century kids, ages ranging from eight to 14, a movie to be watched on television and a shabby cardboard box. The time: Christmas.

So, I am one of those parents who keep constantly nagging at kids who watch telly and play computer games, Nintendo or their PlayStation. I just hate kids staring at screens. I don't think it's healthy at all!

I am also one of those who shake their head because all hope's gone; kids just lack imagination and don't know how to play anymore. All kids! When I was a kid, we used to play outside all day long, climbing trees and being pirates, and Robinson Crusoes and explorers, and whatnot! We were so much healthier, weren't we?

Well, this Christmas, Father Christmas had a lovely surprise for me, which filled my heart with warmth and joy. (Doesn't it sound just so tender?)

Darkness covered the land. Candles burnt making our home cozy and Christmassy. Our stomachs were full with delicious Christmas food and chocolate and we were content. So, we, the parents, asked our kids if they would now like to watch a movie with us all together, a children's movie.

The kids looked at each other and thought for a while. "Well... hmmm... I don't know", the youngest said and stared at the other two. "How about the cardboard box then?" The older ones looked doubtful and replied: "Yeah, how about the cardboard box?"

Let me open a little parenthesis here: the mysterious cardboard box they were talking about meant the huge battered box that had housed the new electric Yamaha drums that Father Christmas had just brought the kids (they have a band, you know).

"So, if we watch the movie, will we have time for the cardboard box?" The youngest asked. "What time is it anyway?", the eldest added. We told them we had time to watch the movie and then it was time to go to sleep. "Forget it then!"' the middle one said. "We want to play with the cardboard box", they all exclaimed. "Yeah, let's not watch the movie, let's play!" We were in awe. These 21st century kids rather played with a rotten old cardboard box than watched a cool movie. Well, that was just fine with us! And off they went to the girls' room, closed the door and played a noisy game with their dear old cardboard box.

So, I was wrong! All kids do not stare at the screen, and some kids still know how to play turning simple poor things into magical playing devices. All hope is not gone! And we, parents, should definitely encourage this type of behavior as much as possible. Magic can happen when least expected.

By the way, we never found out what the game was about, but we certainly heard lots of laughter from behind that closed door!