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MC: How to Have Fun With Indoor Activities

I am part of an AWESOME mommy panel with Cassie from Two In Diapers and Julie from Naptime Review.
Each Saturday, we will bring you fresh new ideas and advice about motherhood.
If you enjoyed what you read, we encourage you to tweet about it!
Coming on January 26th, we will discuss:
How do you handle picky eaters?
Now on to this week's topic!
What is your favorite indoor activity when it's too cold to play outside?
Here is what Mom Connection shared:
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Welcome! I'm Julie over at Naptime Review. I am a mom of two wild, crazy and beautiful girls. My oldest just turned 4 and my baby is 16 months old. These are some of our favorite activities when it's too cold to play outside:
Years ago, before Alice arrived into this world, we transformed our basement into an in-home preschool. I was responsible for teaching 6 kids including Averie. It was a lot of fun! I loved working with that age.
Now, my preschool is on hold so we now use that space as a special play area. I would like going down to the preschool to be a special treat. So when it is too cold to go outside and enjoy the day we enjoy playing downstairs in the preschool. It has everything you can imagine, such as library, computer, art table and easel, dress ups, music, pretend kitchen, and much more. As Alice is getting older she really enjoys our trips to the preschool.
Hi! I'm Cassie from Two In Diapers, and I'm a mommy to three sweet babies, ages 4, 3, and 20 months. These are some of our favorite indoor activities when it's too cold to play outside:
There was definitely a time when I would have drawn a blank on this one. However, like many aspects involving motherhood, I've grown in patience and creativity...
I'm learning to see life like children do, and find fun activities in the most ordinary things. There are occasional days in which the kiddos take off to play in each others' rooms or just play quietly by themselves, but not usually. On the cold days when we're stuck inside, we do anything from art projects to games, to puzzles, to reading books. We might play in a kitchen sink full of soapy water, plastic dishes, scrub brushes and other random objects. We definitely build forts around the house, and window crayons are always a favorite. We play dress up and have story time, we get out the play dough, cookie cutters, and plastic silverware to create "meals". We gather every small, disposable object we can find in this house and "decorate" {with glue} poster-board. We glue leftover birthday streamers to mason jars {Anyone else ever notice the jars come in 20 packs? What else would I do with them??} and paint popsicle sticks for no reason at all. We punch shapes out of colored paper with mommy's shaped punchers and glue them all over a white piece of paper to create masterpieces. You get the idea.
With three little ones who would absolutely LIVE outside if I let them, the key is creativity and viewing the world as a child.
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My name is Alexa from No Holding Back. I am the mom of Nayner Bug (male, 5), Jelly Bean, (female, 3) and Tiny (female, 1). These are our favorite activities when it's too cold to play outside:
I actually laughed when I read this week's topic because when I read it I was standing outside pushing my girls on the swings in 78 degree weather! We rarely get days that are too cold to play outside, however, in the summer time we do get many a day that it is too hot to play outside. So it's good to have some tricks up your sleeve.
My kids really enjoy playing games. Whether it be our own crazy made up version of "memory" (which really just consists of matching anything that makes sense - like Ariel and Flounder rather than Ariel and Ariel!) or doing large floor puzzles, the kids like games. Our favorite game is called "Hullabaloo." It's from the makers of Cranium, and there are floor pieces you stand on and then follow directions from the "brain" as it tells you what to move to. It's something I enjoy playing with them as well!
Arts and crafts are hit or miss. Unless it's a really unusual project, I can't hold their attention span for more than 10 minutes, and it usually takes a lot more than that to set up and clean up.
Finally, they have a new favorite game since Christmas. My five and three year old entertained themselves for over an hour the other day collecting up their books and toys and wrapping them in Christmas paper and having a gift exchange. It was too much fun for everyone! So I will be stocking up on wrapping paper and tape the next time I see it on mega sale! Awesomesauce!
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My name is Fotini! I blog over at Glamorous Affordable Life. I am the mom of (Isabella 20 months and Christian 6 years). These are our favorite activities when it's too cold to play outside:
Well, we've really had a cold winter here in Ohio. We had 4 snowstorms within a few-day time period. There's nothing worse than having cabin fever with two bored kiddos running around the house! I always have some easy-to-make crafts on hand when there's "nothing" to do. Both of my kids love drawing, so we draw often - pictures for friends, family, my son’s teacher, etc. Isabella simply scribbles, but it keeps her occupied for quite a while!
We also love to read! Christian is really mastering the skill of reading, so he's able to read books to Isabella and me. Isabella is mesmerized by him when he reads to her. It's precious! Isabella even takes her turn "reading" to us and jabbering! I think that reading is so important for a child's development and I'm thrilled my kids enjoy it as much as they do!
Another go-to activity we do during the winter months is puzzles! Christian went through a phase where all he wanted to do was puzzles, so we have a bunch! Isabella is still too young to understand it, but she sits with us and hands us the pieces. It's good coordination development for her at the same time! Love spending this time with them!!
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My name is Kristen from The Mrs. & The Momma. I'm the momma of three girls (ages 7, 5, & 3) and a little boy (18 months). This is one of our favorite activities when it's too cold to play outside:
Homemade playdough! This is a cheap, easy, and fun way to kill numerous hours when the little ones and me are cooped up inside. For my 19 month old, I don't care if he eats some since it's basically just flour and salt. I give them cookie cutters, plastic knives, and a place mat.... and they're good to go for a solid thirty minutes if not more.
Here's the recipe for Perfect Playdough:
2 c. flour
1/2 c. salt
1-2 pkg. unsweetened Kool-Aid (or food coloring)
2 Tbsp. cream of tartar
2 Tbsp. veg. oil
2 c. water
In a large pot, combine all the dry ingredients. Mix well and add oil, water (and food coloring if you did not choose to use Kool-Aid). Stir over medium heat until mixture is almost too hard to stir (it will still look a little wet). Dump out onto counter top (be careful- it's HOT!) and allow to cool for a few minutes. Knead until smooth and pliable. Store in an airtight container. Enjoy!!!!
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Your Turn:

What is your favorite indoor activity when it's too cold to play outside?
Leave us a comment; we love to read your tips and advice!
Need advice? Check out these previous Mom Connection topics:

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