Most of us probably grew up watching cartoons on TV while we were growing up. Saturday mornings always seemed to be the best morning of the week, when we’d sit down with a bowl of our favorite cereal and watch the silliness unfold on the screen. Even now, some of my friends let their little ones watch cartoons on Saturday mornings, and while their kids have a great time, unfortunately they end up wanting toys that are based on their favorite cartoons. Especially when it comes to birthday time and holiday time every year, the first thing they want is a toy mimicking their favorite cartoons. Are these cartoons telling kids their parents will always buy these things for them? Cartoon Toys Are Big Business According to the Toy Industry Association, in 2010, $21.78 billion was spent on toys, up 2% from 2009. While included in that number are toys that aren’t necessarily connected to cartoon characters or franchises, the majority of those toys are based on kids’ favorites. In the aisles of every toy store are a variety of action figures, plush dolls, and even games that have recognizable characters that kids gravitate towards and want their parents to buy. And it seems that parents have definitely given in. Switching Off Another thing to think about are the number of commercials that hock toys during the cartoons themselves. Every other commercial is for a toy based on a character or franchise, and the kids are in a vulnerable state to take it all in and get the urge to ask for a toy from their parents. Of course, the best way to curb that is to turn the TV off on Saturday morning and try an alternative activity with the little ones before peer pressure makes it much harder. Some of the best things to do are to go to a park, start an arts and crafts project, or simply remove the TV and have a simple sit-down breakfast where you talk about your creative plans for the day. Get the kids involved with how their Saturday is going to go and they’ll make an adventure out of it! What are your Saturday morning alternatives for kids? Like us on Facebook and tell us about them! Need more assistance in learning to let go of the consumer media’s impact on your life, take control of your finances and find the satisfaction of enough for today? The Get Satisfied Interactive Handbook is a 30-minute web course that walks you through a series of specific questions and then presents a personalized how-to plan for becoming a postconsumer. Launch your evaluation for free right now.