When we downsized our already small house 2 years ago, most people thought we were crazy. We moved the last week of October 2012 but were so busy in the barns through the winter that the size of our house didn’t register. Then summer came and my kids lived outdoors. Last winter we had a new baby to occupy and distract us. This year I will have a toddler, preschooler and 6 year old running around our house. A house that basically consists of a living room, kitchen, and combined office/dining room (and a bathroom and bedrooms of course but we don’t typically play in those rooms). To keep the walls from closing in over the winter months, I have taken some time to prepare activities and ideas.
- Stock up on art supplies: paint, crayons, blank paper, paper plates, glue, scissors, fuzzy pom poms etc. I’m not a crafty mom so I just set them out and let the kids decide what they want to do with them.
- Have simple recipes on hand: A couple of my favorite kid friendly recipes are 5 ingredient chocolate chip cookies, peasant bread, or homemade mozzarella.
- Print coloring/activity pages: What interests your child? I’m sure that you can search the internet and find some coloring pages to go with that interest.
- Buy books at the thrift store and bring out a few new ones each week.
- Get a science in the kitchen experiment book.
- Get a new card deck: Play Go Fish, Solitaire, Crazy 8s etc.
- Movies and popcorn: Some oldies but goodies are Captain Ron, Little Women, Star Wars, Pride and Prejudice, Finding Nemo (I’m not the only one that chants “just keep swimming” on a bad day, am I?). Make kettle corn popcorn the old fashioned way, in a pot on the stove.
- Act out a play: Write your own or act out a favorite book. It could be as simple as each person can read a line while sitting around the table or you could make costumes and sets and record the whole thing. Or put on a puppet show if you don’t want to act.
- Bookmark funny or interesting or beautiful videos on YouTube. Watch them on a cranky day. Here’s one to get you started about how kids react to an old computer.
- Plan a camping trip: Build a fort and camp out in the living room. Be sure to include hot chocolate, story telling, and even roasting marshmallows over a candle.
So now I need to ask you, what is your favorite family indoor winter activity?