Friday, February 22, 2013

Bringing the Outdoors In


I'm finishing out my first week as a full-time SAHM and loving it, despite the winter chill and the constant snow. I've had to put my thinking cap on several times this week to come up with entertaining indoor activities for my one and two year old. Many of you have way more experience than me with this, so I'd love to get your feedback on fun things you do with the wee ones all winter!

My first idea was sparked as I daydreamed about warmer days and sunny skies. I remembered my son just starting to enjoy the art of looking at the clouds and trying to find shapes when the weather turned frigid. Why not re-create that experience indoors?, I thought. A few simple snips later and some masking tape and we had ourselves a "sky" full of shapes. 


The kids {love} this activity and it literally took me ten minutes to execute. I still can't get over how marvelous they think it is that shapes are stuck to our ceiling!


I've made a list of other outdoor activities we've recreated indoors and thought I'd share it with you today. Would love your ideas, too!

1) Indoor Tent/fort - Gather all the blankets and sheets from around the house, use dining room chairs as your pillars and enjoy some reading time underneath. Kyler especially loves this activity and asks for it often.


2) "Nature Walk" - This is by far my two year old's favorite outdoor activity. Put a stick in one hand a rock in the other and he is literally content for hours! If you're up for it, scatter a few rocks and sticks around the house and enjoy a nature walk indoors. I'm guessing if you have boys, they'll be all smiles! 

3) Tag - Who said you can't run indoors? In our house, running indoors is a must or the kids' legs would implode! ;)  We clear as much space as possible and play chase at least once a day. Kyler often says, "Mama, run with me." And off we go! 

4) Animal/Car Watch - My kids are surprisingly content sitting by the window looking for birds and squirrels or cars and buses. If I just need to sit still for a minute, the sliding glass door is a sure hit!


5) Swimming - Both our kids seem to have their mama's love for water, which we fully encourage. Bath time in our house is as much about getting clean as it is about entertainment. At one and two, both kids have mastered the art of sticking their face in the water and blowing bubbles. The two year old loves to lay on his belly and pretend to swim. Needless to say, we take lots of baths and occasionally put our bathing suits on for it, too!

6) Car Wash - All those winter colds can put a toll on the kids' toys. Since my kids love being in the water, we recently had an indoor "car wash" where we gave all the non-electronic, non-soft toys a good scrubbing. I love it when productivity and entertainment collide! 

7) Picnic - We had our first indoor picnic the other day and my kids thought it was the coolest thing ever. We loaded up our picnic basket, laid out an old quilt and ate lunch on the living room floor. I think their favorite part was getting to pick anything out of the basket they wanted to eat!


What do your kids enjoy doing all winter?



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