Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Cabin Fever

I love to get outside! So summer is hands down my favorite time of year. I also love fall and can tolerate even walks in the cold (until it dips below 30 degrees). Spring can be hit or miss with weather but days outside are not unknown. However... winter... it seems the days that we play outside are few and far between. We only play outside the day right after it snows and then usually not again until another good storm hits. The air quality is too yucky, and the temperature is frigid. So we just HOLE up in side.

I go crazy if I don't do SOMETHING though. So here are some fun winter things I've done to keep myself and my kids occupied:

Instead of taking walks outside we usually go for a walk at the mall in the morning. Where I live they open the mall doors around 6:00 AM for people to come walking and the mall doesn't actually open until 10:00 so it is pretty much a track during those hours. Plus, they have a kids land play place that I let my children climb around on for 5-10 minutes while I stretch out. I also like to run to stay in shape and I don't have a treadmill, so in the winter I use workout videos to keep my body healthy instead.

When it snows I've learned to not waste it! It may be gone in less than two days. So I just grit my teeth, throw the snow pants on the kids, and head on out for a few hours. We also try to go snowshoeing as a family or skiing - though that can be tricky with little ones.

Field Trips:
Some of the places we go during the winter are - Story time at the library (this is only for 3 and up in my area, but still a good thing to check with your local library), indoor soft play areas or jungle gyms (this could be somewhere like McDonald's or a Family Fun Center) or, museums (we usually have to drive to one of these, but it is worth it to get out of the house).

We usually do a ton of crafts in the winter. My little girl loves to show her dad what she made that day!!

Play dates:
Sometimes these are a lifesaver - just to get out and go to someone else's house and have new toys to play with is refreshing. It also serves to give me some sanity as I chat with another mom.

Those are just some of my ideas. But please leave a comment and let us know what YOU do during the winter to stave off the Cabin Fever.


Jared and Delia said...

I have to admit. I have been literally dreaming about summer this winter...sooner than normal too.

During winter I like an excuse to turn on the oven so I bake. I am sure it doesn't do my waistline favors but my kids like helping a lot or coming in every few minutes from playing to get a taste, stir something, etc. That helps the time pass nicely and it is convenient for many baking recipes that require rising time or refrigeration time...since I don't plan on going anywhere any way.

For some fun craft ideas I found this awesome blog. She seems to have good ideas for toddlers and not just preschoolers. I can't wait to try her colored ice bricks next week. One benefit to having below freezing temps day and night. I have a giant built in outdoor freezer. :)


Another winter favorite is to go to our church building to ride bikes.

Megan said...

There are lots of things we try to do. One thing I just learned about is our local university's Anthropology museum offers free events every Saturday from 10 to 4 and they usually have kids activities that go with the event. They did a Mesoamerican Marketplace yesterday and are doing the Khmer Empire next Saturday. We also have a garage, so I sometimes let my little guy go in there to ride his ride-around toys.

Tannie Datwyler said...

That is such a smart idea with the garage! I totally wouldn't have thought of that... I don't have a garage yet, but I'll keep it in mind. Thanks Megan.

Does anyone else know of other free museums and/or indoor places for kids to play other than ones listed??