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8 Great Ways to Spend a Snow Day


snow days

Fun on snow days

Photo credit: Jochen Sand
8 Great Ways to Spend a Snow Day
Photo © 2009 Katherine Lewis
8 Great Ways to Spend a Snow Day
Photo © 2009 Katherine Lewis

When you wake up in the morning and see your child jumping for joy after peering out the window, that dreaded feeling suddenly overcomes you. The frost-covered streets have made getting to school - and possibly to work - impossible. You know there's a long day ahead because your children have a snow day.

Now you're faced with the task of occupying the kids or finding someone to care for them while you go to work. But fear not, there are plenty of great ways to spend a snow day.

For working moms, there are three scenarios for a snow day:

Ideal scenario:

Your boss gives you the day off from work. While this is the most preferable scenario, it's also unlikely in most workplaces, unless you're a school educator or employee as well. Or, unless there's such a huge snowstorm that the whole city shuts down.

Semi-ideal scenario: Due to the snow storm and your inability to get to work, your boss allows you to work for home. While this eliminates the need for child care, it forces you to have to juggle getting all your work done and occupying your kids.

Not so great scenario: You need to get to work despite inclement weather. Now, you need to find child care for your children. If that's an emergency babysitter or neighbor, you'll be more likely to have a return visit if you provide entertainment for the snow day as well.

So whether you're working from home, have the day off or need to send along some fun projects with your kids to a babysitter, here are some fun snow day activities.

Set up easy crafts for kids. One of the best snow day activities is to allow your kids to have a day off from their studies and create things the old-fashioned way. Draw photos of the scene outside your window, or create holiday cards with construction paper and colored markers or crayons.

Play board games. Break out the Monopoly set because it's going to be a long day. Play a game that you can come back to, and one in which multiple players can participate. If you're working from home, try to squeeze in a few rounds before conference calls, and have your kids play with each other if you get tied up with work for a period of time.

Make snowmen. Whether your kids are grade school or high school students, a snow day isn't complete without some fun in the snow. Make a snowman or have a snowball fight outside your home. Afterwards, you can get some work done while the kids relax for a bit in front of the television.

Go sledding. If you have several feet of snow outside your door and nearby terrain is favorable for sledding, grab a sled and use your lunch hour for this favorite winter time activity. Kids of all ages enjoy the thrill of a good slide down the hill -- and it's something you can only do on a snow day, so take advantage of it!

Toast marshmallows. While the weather outside may be frightful, the fire can be delightful. With your supervision, have the kids roast marshmallows by the fireplace, or, if you don't have one, you can cook then over the stove. Combine with hot cocoa for a traditional winter treat, especially welcome after that snow ball fight.

Bake. There's nothing like feeling all warm inside when it's cold outside. And baking cookies or a cake gives you a sense of warmth, home and family when you're looking for a fun snow day activity.

Watch a movie. Especially if you must work from home on a snow day, it's good to keep the kids occupied - and quiet. Therefore, renting a good snow day flick, such as Frosty The Snowman, will keep the kids in front of the television at least for an hour and a half so you can get your work done, and they can relax.

Start Spring cleaning early. Snow days are ideal times for you to get rid of unwanted items. Since you're cooped up indoors, use this time to make the whole family clean out their closets and drawers. You can even make a game of it by seeing who can get rid of the most stuff, or have a race to see who can finish cleaning first. Or make a goal to donate five boxes of gently used clothes and toys to families in need, and build your children's social interest at the same time.

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