While peering out the window and watching the melting snow, my mind is wandering back to those wonderful days when my two daughters were younger and living at home. As a self-employed Mom, I was usually able to carve out a couple hours of fun with my girls after a good wintry blizzard. We loved snow days!
But after an hour or two of making snow people, sledding, and throwing snowballs, the girls would head inside, usually with a couple of neighborhood friends. And that’s when they’d say, “Mom, it’s too cold outside, what can we do now?” The first couple of years I was often caught off guard; I was scrambling for activities for the girls and their friends. But then, I got wise! Prior to the first snow, I’d ask the girls to list 5-10 things they’d like to do if given a bonus day at home or a snow day. We’d post those lists on the refrigerator mid-fall and wait…
Living in southern Indiana, we didn’t have a lot of snow days. But, I remember one particular year when they missed a week of school. And, the temps were so low it kept the girls inside most of the day. So, how did we survive? I’d like to share a few ideas that kept the girls occupied and Mom happy!
- Since it’s snowing outside, why don’t you bring the snow indoors and create paper snowflakes? All you need is scissors and paper. You want to begin with a square sheet of paper, so you may have to trim the common 8 ½” x 11” piece of paper. You can fold the paper in half and in half again to make a smaller square. Or, fold the paper to make a triangle and fold again to make a smaller triangle. You can fold either shape as many times as you want. Next, you begin cutting out shapes and pieces. It’s always fun to snip off the corners, too! It doesn’t matter exactly how you cut them- each snowflake will be a one of a kind masterpiece! When you unfold the cut square or triangle, you will have a beautiful snowflake to display in your home!
- The following activity was a favorite at our house! As soon as snowflakes began to fall, the girls started planning their fort. I gave them every blanket, quilt, and sheet I could find and then we moved the furniture around so chairs were in the middle of the family room. Sometimes we brought in extra kitchen or dining room chairs. They would spend hours draping blankets over chairs to make “rooms”. Then they brought in books, dolls, snacks, etc. They usually asked if they could sleep in the fort- so in went the pillows, too! There were a couple of times they spent all day organizing and playing in this makeshift home/office/school or whatever place their imaginations wanted it to be! The clean up was easy- washing blankets and sheets, but no big mess!
- One of my girlfriends was a stay-at-home Mom with two little ones. On the first snow day of the year, they would have a “jammies day”. They stayed in their pajamas, had a special breakfast, and read books and watched movies all day. Even Mom stayed in her pajamas- kids love for grown-ups to be silly with them!
So, for all the Moms, Grandmas, and babysitters that are looking for winter activities, remember, your kids are eager to be creative and have fun! Ask other Moms what activities they do with their kids on indoor days.
What about you? I’d love you to share the activities you do with your kids on those snowy, indoor days- feel free to post a picture!