Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Snow Day Fun!

Today was a milestone day...the first snow day that I experienced as a mom, not a teacher.

Let me rephrase.  It has snowed in CT since Madison was born (obviously). It has snowed since REAGAN was born (again, obviously).  But when I was teaching, I yearned for snow days in the winter months.  When you are dragging yourself out the door every day in a pitch black, freezing cold morning, trying to navigate a baby into daycare with the right combination of bundling and car seat safety, you long for a day at home.

As a stay at home mom, I don't yearn for snow days in the same way, because we usually have the option of staying home and being lazy on any given day.  We usually don't, but we could.  So it's fun, but it doesn't really impact our day.

But today, we did NOT attend our scheduled activity, due to the snow.  Madison was a little sad that she wasn't going to "school" today.  But instead, we had snow fun at home. 

When we woke up to snow, I started coming up with our plan.  Adam is working, so if we were playing in the snow, it would be one mom and two little girls.  PLUS, we were supposed to get some sleet and freezing rain, so we'd have to time our outdoor time just right. That probably meant:
  • a lot of tears and stress getting both girls bundled into snowsuits
  • carrying a 10 month old walker, who is still too tiny to wear snowsuits made for walking
  • helping a 2 1/2 year old do what she wanted to do, but can't, because she really can't do much with her mittens
  • putting mittens back ON 50 or 60 times when the toddler inevitably takes them off
  • bringing the girls back in after 10 minutes or so and going through the tears and stress involved with unbundling them again
  • changing my own clothes, since I don't own snow pants for myself and would end up soaked
Will I do it? Sure. Is it easier with Adam to help me?  Yes. So do I really want to do it alone? No, not really.

So this morning, as I had my morning chat with my best friend, I decided that we would bring the snow inside.

After Reagan had taken her morning nap, and Madison had her snack, I pulled the water table into the kitchen and emptied it of the dried beans we've been using for play this winter.  I placed two towels under the table, creating two places to stand that would remain fairly "slip free". I went out on the patio with a bucket and brought in about 6 buckets of snow. I set out one bowl of warmish water that I kept refreshed for when hands got chilly. Then, I invited the girls into the kitchen to play.

The girls were blown away by having the snow inside!  They dug right in with shovels, rakes, bowls, and their hands.  Madison promptly started making me a dish of ice cream.

After they'd played for a bit, I pulled out the liquid watercolors and we decorated the snow.

They played for about a half hour, took a break, and drifted back into the kitchen.  We ended our snow play by making a mini snowman.

It was a perfect snow day morning for my two little girls. No bundling, no tears, no lost mittens, and a chance for both girls to really play with the snow, unencumbered by mitten paws and baby snowsuits not meant for walkers.

Once they were done, clean up was easy.  Snow is light enough where I could easily carry the table to the back door and dump out our colorful mess.  I used the towels to wipe up the drips, and to wipe out the tables.

Obviously this won't replace outside play in the snow, and of course we'll do that too!  But I think we've found a great snow day activity that leaves everyone happy, warm, and dry!

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