Family Bonding Through Cartoons

If you’re an anime, YouTube, and cartoon junkie like my teens and I are, then there are probably some shows you deeply miss and even if they are retired, you still find yourself flipping through Netflix or YouTube for a re-run episode that you can enjoy. Whether its because of it’s art style or storyline,  cartoons grow on us adults and kids alike and they stay with us for a very long time.

Everyone loves a good cartoon, we grow up on them. We talk about them with our friends. We can relate to them in some significant part of our life. We laugh with them, we cry with them, and we eagerly await the next episode for them. Cartoons gave us entertainment with a lesson and no matter how old you or your kids are, cartoons can be the central start to a bonding and lasting relationship.

So today we’re going to talk about some of my favorite cartoons that our family misses but we now re-watch on Netflix or YouTube during our down time. These cartoons aren’t the current ones that are no longer playing, but rather cartoons over 10 years or so, as my kids are now teenagers and these were the ones we enjoyed watching together.

Fosters Home for Imaginary Friends

I can’t wrap my head around the disappearance of Fosters Home for Imaginary Friends by animator Craig McCracken. I miss this cartoon so much it hurts. Foster’s was an orphanage for the imaginary friends that kids dream up and come to life. The house was filled with diverse characters waiting to be reunited or adopted to new kids because their original kid outgrew them. The series focused on building friendships and the importance of friends, real or imaginary. I loved this cartoon because I was an orphan before I was adopted and I had very few good friends growing up as a military child. This cartoon was so funny, heartfelt, and good for all levels of emotional support.


Courage the Cowardly Dog

My second most favorite cartoon of all time was Courage the Cowardly Dog. I miss this cartoon just as much as Fosters, but for different reasons. Courage is a timid pink dog with paranoia problems. His owners are an old couple living on a farm full of bizarre adversaries. Courage must overcome his fear and help save his owners, Eustace and Muriel, from ghosts and paranormal spirits living on the farm. Although Muriel loves Courage, Eustace loves to tease him and scare him. This show taught me that no matter how they are treated or how scared they may be, dogs will go above and beyond for the owners they love. It was a funny and moving cartoon with unexpected twists and turns. Who could ever turn down such a wonderful pink dog!


The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy

Most of the cartoons I like are along the path of dark and distorted with a good lesson learned. I like when evil and villains come out on top and when evil can do good at times. That was why I liked The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy.  Billy and Mandy are a mismatched pair of youngsters who befriend the Grim Reaper after winning a limbo contest against him. Since the Grim Reaper lost, he has to be their friend, and the three go on adventures together. Between school, family and visitors from the spirit world, Billy and Mandy sometimes need help to clean up the messes they get themselves into, and that’s where Hos Delgado comes in. Hos and the Grim Reaper are not friends, and with Mandy’s bossy nature and Billy’s curious attitude funny escapades ensue. It is a light-hearted adventure about friendship among even the most unexpected beings.


Dexter’s Laboratory

Everyone loved Dexter’s Lab. He was one of the first nerdy cartoon icons that focused on the positives of STEM Education (Science Technology Engineering Math). He was brilliant and funny and a mastermind at solving all kinds of problems, except his irksome little sister. Even such a mastermind couldn’t stop the power of an annoying sister, but even as hard as he tried to get rid of her, he simply couldn’t because he deeply loved her. The cartoon focused on STEM education and family values. It was a delight to watch and saddening to say goodbye.


Ed, Edd, and Eddy

Ed, Edd, and Eddy focused on three of the most disgusting, rude, conniving, and totally dumb boys in the neighborhood. The kicker is that they could outsmart everyone else when they put their minds together, but they just simply could not outwit the girls. Each boy had their positives and negatives with Eddy being the ringleader, though not the smartest of the three. Ed, Edd, and Eddy was funny and entertaining to every one who could relate to growing up with plots and schemes that simply failed but left a path of learning ahead.


Making Fiends

Making Fiends started off as a Web series created by animator Amy Winfrey in 2003 and then moved on to Nicktoons as a tv series. I’m happy to say I was around during the original airtime of this unique cartoon. It focused on two totally different girls, one who is friendly, sweet, and caring while the other is evil, anti-social, and dark. They learned to connect and bond together while fighting their inner need for friendship.


And what about these classics? Do you remember them?

There are so many more cartoons that I miss, but too many to name. Today, like movies, most cartoons lack substance, style, and story. Only but a few have really captured by attention like Gravity Falls and Phineas & Ferb. These shows are the lessons we learn as we grow up and move on. They may now be a shadow of our past, but they will forever be in our hearts and make us nostalgic over the years.

Most importantly, cartoons are GREAT ways to bond and spend time with your kids, whether younger kids or teenagers, everyone loves a good cartoon.

What are some other cartoons you miss? What are your current favorites? Share your memories with us.

About Kat Mahoney

My name is Kat. I'm a Digital Educator, Tech Consultant, Author/Blogger, and Community Family Advisor. Most importantly, I'm a proud geekmom to three high schoolers and wife to an amazing retired military soldier. I love technology, video games, board games, Sci-Fi, cosplay, Star Wars, travel, coffee, crafting, and positive thinkers! Physically I'm here, but mentally I'm in a galaxy FAR FAR AWAY!

4 thoughts on “Family Bonding Through Cartoons

  1. We had so many favourites, including the time worn flinstones and jetsons! Other huge favourites were Rugrats, Wild Thornberries, Scooby and Maisy Mouse! 😃😃😃😃🦉

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