Switch it Up- Ideas for Winter Days

I am really summer dreaming. We are at a stage where we do A LOT everyday because we have to. Attention spans are short, energy is high and learning is at a max. We try to keep it interesting. It is sometimes messy and hopefully it is free- or at the least very cheap.

At our stage with a 2 year old and a baby, here are some things we've done to switch it up so far this winter.

1.Make Lunch/Snack a picnic!

This is hard with our dogs but they were happily distracted outside for the 20 minutes this happened.

2. Build a fort or tent.

3. Color inside a big box, or open up to make the box flat and color/paint on it.

We all have those huge diaper boxes anyways, right?

4. Bring outside toys, inside.

5. Sensory trays-and-plays! All different ways!

Shaving cream
Fill a bin with variety of things (clearly make sure your child knows not to ingest these things for fear of choking). Picture depicts dried corn but some ideas are oats, paper scraps, uncooked rice or pasta, sand, coffee beans, cheerios, cotton balls, gravel or pebbles, and the list goes on!
(This bin is filled with oats).
When it snowed, we brought snow inside and got some extra play time out of it! 

6. Just add water!

Just have an empty sink, pull up a chair, and let them explore! Sometimes you can use this as a time to give dirty toys a "bath" and they'll get cleaned while little hands are playing! This has occupied my little guy for nearly 40 minutes sometimes!

7. Go somewhere! Even if only for 20 minutes... it is worth it. Change of scenery, new exploration, and sometimes exercise or fresh air!

We live near 2 malls that have playgrounds inside for smaller kids. It's perfect for the winter!
Go to the store. We went on a very cold PJ day at home, but we had been coped up and needed a few things anyways like milk and bananas. I swore I wouldn't be that Mom in Target in sweats with my kids in their PJs at 4pm, but I did and I'm only sorry for ever judging another Mama.
Bundled up, threw in blankets, and walked around the block. The fresh air resets everyone and the warm feeling when you walk back in the house helps set up for some cozy play.

8. Find books that have been forgotten and read them somewhere different than usual (like in a fort with a flashlight!). Or pop some popcorn for a daytime viewing of a favorite movie.

Those are some ideas we have been exploring this season aside from the usual things like: cooking/baking, coloring/painting, building blocks, dancing, musical instruments, playing with toys, video chatting with someone, and more.

I have complete confidence any Mommy out there does these things, or has the ability to think up their own. But I also know the feeling of foggy thinking through tiredness and searching the internet for ideas- so I hope some of the ones I've shared help switch up your day and inspire you to think of more!