Ok, we can all honestly say, we have just about had it with winter.
I am usually not even a cold weather complainer, but this is different. When February has just begun, and you feel the winter blues you usually feel at the end of March, you know it has to be bad. The scary part is, there is a tiny part of me that wonders if winter will ever actually end. Be honest. You have had to have that thought too. I shiver at night (literally), wondering if I will ever again see the grass that is buried deep under piles of snow, and even more so…if it snows again, where in the world will I put more snow?? I think we are at our capacity as of now,and possibly forever.
As parents, we are pretty used to making lemonade out of lemons (in the summer), so in this case, we need to do the same. We have tons of snow and to anyone under the age of twelve, that usually means a lot of fun! Your kids might be so over sledding already, or a little too young to go out on the hills, so I have compiled a list for you of some fun snow activities THAT ARE NOT and DO NOT involve sledding. These are some fun activities you can go outside and do with your kids, or, if they are old enough, sit inside in the (kind of) warmth and watch them have a blast!
Cookie Cutters in the Snow
Bring out your cookie cutters! No, you are not baking this time (something I have done WAAYYYY too much of on these cold days!). You are letting the kids go outside and have fun making shapes in the snow. This works well on packed snow. If you try it on soft, fluffy snow, your cutters just sink in. And yes, I probably know that little fact from having to dig up a billion sunken cookie cutters the first time my kids did this activity but, live and learn, right?
Sand toys aren’t just for summer! Bring out the buckets, shovels, rollers and shakers and the kids will have a blast making “snow castles”! They will dig and play for awhile, just like they do in the sand at the beach. (Ahhh….beach.)
Colored Water Balloons–Gems
Fill up water balloons with water and a drop of food coloring. Tie off, set outside to freeze. Cut off balloon and decorate your yard with beautiful colored “gems”. My girls love this game. They take it a little farther by hiding them and playing a pretend game of searching for “treasures”.
Bring out the bottles of bubbles or the bubble machines. The novelty of blowing bubbles in the cold is sometimes enough to entertain the kids, but they also like that the bubbles sometimes last longer and freeze! We tried color bubbles once too and that was fun. Try not to spill the bubbles all over your gloves though. Not fun.
Do you have any old squeeze bottles lying around? We did from a craft we did around the holidays. Fill them up to the top with water and put in two drops of food coloring. Shake. Make a couple different bottles of different colors and let the kids go crazy in the yard. They can draw designs by squeezing the bottles onto the ground, or color up a batch of snowballs or snowmen. Even though the color is very watered down, I still told my kids to make sure they pointed it away from themselves and never at another person. These winter coats and gear they have need to last at least another four months the way this winter is going and I would prefer it not to be stained.
Tic Tac Toe
If the kids can find sticks, rocks and pine cones buried deep in the snow (good luck!) tic tac toe is always fun to play. Use sticks to make the board and then one player takes the rocks and another takes the pine cones. You can make other games using nature as well–just get creative!
Sick of hot chocolate when you come in? Been there, done that? How about some snow cream? Follow this recipe for a tasty treat. Make lots of batches, and diminishing the snow piles in your yard is a possibility.
Still craving that winter warm up? How about ditching the quick packets and taking the long way? Make some hot cocoa on the stove with your kids. It will be more of an activity and it tastes better too! Looking for something without sugar? Try this recipe I make often and be pleasantly surprised with how delicious it is!
1/2 tsp unsweetened cocoa
1 tsp pure maple syrup
1/2 cup of warm milk
Whisk ingredients together in a mug, enjoy.
Winter will be here for awhile, but in the meantime, enjoy these fun activities. Don’t forget to check out our Pinterest Board filled with some more awesome activities to keep you and your kids sane during this never ending winter! Keep dreaming about summer. Someone’s dreams will have to come true soon enough!
What sort of snow activities have you tried with your kids? Share your ideas in the comments below!