Editor’s note: Julie Cole is a busy mom of six young children and the co-founder of Mabel’s Labels Inc. She loves her business, babies and blogging. With warmth and humor, she writes about the juggling act that is her life – including raising a child with autism. Countless moms look to Julie for advice and survival tips. After all, Julie likes to think she has graduated from the Parenting School of Hard Knocks – and with high honors!
Around our house, we are firm believers in embracing what Mother Nature provides us with. In winter, that means a lot of skiing and ice hockey. Most winters, we even make an ice rink in our backyard.
Sometimes, dear sweet Mother Nature decides to dump a lot of snow on us at once, providing the children with the coveted “Snow Day.” In case you are not aware of pre-Snow Day rituals, children everywhere participate in strange activities prior to a storm in hopes of creating a storm bad enough that they will have to miss school. What are these rituals? Last night all six of my children went to bed wearing their pajamas inside out. They also each licked a spoon and put it under their pillow, and finally, they put an ice cube in the toilet before heading off to bed. Honestly, I couldn’t make this stuff up.
Well, they had success — which means I have six children getting under foot today when I have a to-do list a mile long. So how does this mama keep them busy? There is always the risk of too much screen time on a day like today. TVs and video games keep kids quiet and occupied while a busy mama tries to be somewhat productive. But what we mamas have to remember is that days like these are few and far between so it’s worth getting them off those screens and outside into the glorious winter wonderland that is at your front doorstep.
The list of things to do is endless:
Get them to shovel the driveway. This keeps my little people busy for hours.
Explore local hills with your toboggans.
Invite neighborhood kids over to build a snow fort or have a snowball fight. While they do that, the moms and babies can enjoy hot chocolate and a chat from the warmth of indoors.
If you are lucky enough to have a neighborhood ice rink, it’s a great place to gather for some local fun.
Be prepared for indoor time too. Always have a secret stash on hand of craft supplies and projects. When you pull those out, you will have some very happy little crafters!
Whatever you end up doing on this day, remember it really is a little gift from Mother Nature so make the most of it!
What are you doing to keep your kids busy? Let us know! Tweet @ KyraHLN with the # RaisingAmerica hashtag or leave your thoughts on Facebook.com. And be sure to watch Raising America every week day at 12 p.m. ET on HLN.