Snow days are a blessing and a curse, depending on who you ask. Kids unanimously agree that the cancellation of school is something to be celebrated, but parents have other variables to consider, like needing to go to work or the volume and energy levels of the children staying home from school (or the status of the liquor cabinet).
I personally work in the school system, so my general feelings about snow days are more closely aligned with the kids'. I like wearing my jammies all day, and I appreciate being trapped at home. Too many snow days though, and I'm itching to get back into the world and long for the opportunity to miss my kids while they're at school.
Here are some fun things we do to make the most of Mother Nature slowing down our everyday routine.
Craft Hodge Podge
This activity has the word "craft" in it, so yes, it's messy but also worth it. Every family with kids has a supply of random craft supplies that are being saved for who knows what. Snow days are the perfect opportunity to use up all those scraps. Dump all of the paper scraps, stray pipe cleaners, bits of ribbon that were too cute to throw away, smashed bows, glitter pens, tissue paper, buttons and stickers on a table with some scissors and glue sticks and let the kids at it. When they're done, which could honestly be in 10 minutes or two hours, marvel at the creations they managed to make. The remaining scraggly crafting supplies can be put away for the next snow day.
Each person gets one inflated balloon with the goal of keeping it in motion and off the ground. At our house, this game always evolves into some other game, and I'm absolutely here for that kind of creativity and cooperation.
Indoor Snowball Fight
My husband and kids ball up socks and hurl them at each other all year long. Just make sure to secure any spill-able beverages before the games begin.
I always dread baking with the kids, but they love it so much and are always beyond proud of themselves afterwards. Baking with little ones is a great way to talk about fractions, volume and chemistry, and it's a solid investment in the future because someday those same kids spilling flour all over the floor and dipping their yucky fingers in the sugar will be making you delicious baked goods.
Indoor Ice Skating
Find a smooth floor surface that needs to be cleaned. Apply kid-friendly cleaner, like a vinegar and water mixture, Windex or your favorite green cleaner to the floor. Using old socks or cleaning rags, let the kids "skate" around the floor, cleaning with their feet as they go. I particularly like this game after everyone's done playing outside and tracking in snow and mud.
Just thinking about the above activities has me worn out. Let's take it down a notch, shall we? Dining room chairs and a fitted sheet make an easy and sturdy fort. While the kids furnish it, get them a snack to enjoy in their new space. A book or the electronics everyone has been dreaming of all day are perfect for settling into the fort with.
YouTube has an incredible selection of karaoke choices and my kids love taking turns finding songs on our smart tv to sing along with. If you have a karaoke machine, great, but it's just as fun to belt out tunes without a microphone.
A dance party is a great way get out some energy that doesn't require anything other than music. When my kids were younger, this was a great early evening stress reliver for my family when everyone was cranky.
Puzzles and Board Games
It seems basic, but some of our best family conversations have taken place while playing a board game or working on a jigsaw puzzle.
Next time the flakes fly and the cancellation call comes in, bust out a few of these fun snow day activities and you just might appreciate the weather hitting pause on your family's busy schedule.
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