Jumping off of my last post, today I'm talking about more winter fun. I don't know about anyone else, but I struggle with the word "fun" in the winter because it's always cold, wet, and dreary. It's so hard to find the fun in that, besides Christmas, and sometimes we have to get really creative when it comes to entertaining ourselves when you're snowed in or when it's too crummy out to do anything. Add a bunch of kids to the mix and you've got a recipe for disaster, so my older kids and I sat down and put our heads together and made a list of fun, free, or really cheap things we could do to fight winter boredom.
Hit up your local library. My kids and I love going to the library, and not just for books. They get to browse magazines, check out DVDs, and play educational computer games. We also like to take a peek at the library's schedule for free community events. We've gone to magic shows, carnival nights, and a mini reptile exhibit at our local library and it was all free for any kids and parents who wanted to attend. If you have preschoolers or toddlers you should see if your location does a weekly or bi-weekly storytime. I took my two oldest to storytime almost every week when they were little and they loved it! They'd also sing songs and play little games and get the kids to participate and interact with each other. The library has so many great free services so be sure to look at their schedule (you can usually find it on their website too).
Visit a children's museum. Another favorite of ours. Years ago, we invested in a pass to our local children's museum and it was money well spent when you considered how often we went. You can also purchase day passes for fairly cheap, and if you've never been, you should ask about a free day pass for first-time guests to check it out. Some places offer that!
Go to a matinee. Or see what's playing at a nearby discount theater. Sometimes they play some really cool older movies, and the snacks are generally cheaper too.
Visit your local YMCA. Check out their schedule for free or really cheap events, family movies nights, open swim, game nights, etc that are open to the community, not just Y members. You can also get free day passes if you take a tour and inquire about a membership. We did that and swam in the pool and did the rock climbing wall before deciding to become members (they offer discounts for military families and there is a sliding scale option for memberships based on your family size and income, so ask!)
Get outside. Build a snowman, grab some Tupperware and make an igloo, go sledding, or play on the playground with your snow pants on! A lot of kids get super bored and really antsy being cooped up inside and not being able to burn off the energy their little bodies need to expel. Bundle up and get outside. Make sure to bring a snack and a drink to stay hydrated!
My kids love Fruit Shoot, which has teamed up with Pizza Hut for a great cause- children's literacy. Right now, every Fruit Shoot purchase at Pizza Hut will support the First Book literacy program and help get more books into the hands of children. So make one of your winter adventures a trip to Pizza Hut and help support this great program! You can also find out which of your local grocers carries Fruit Shoot by going here.
What are your favorite fun winter adventures? We need some more ideas because this snow is just not letting up anytime soon!