Like most kids, mine dream of waking up to a yard covered in a foot of snow, and like most moms, I dread having to bundle them up, only to welcome them and LOTS of melted snow back into my house a short while later.
A few years ago, we stumbled onto a parenting hack that has now become a holiday tradition for us. Behold — bringing the snow indoors!
Step 1: Convince your kids this will be SUPER fun!
Explain to them that if they go outdoors, they’ll not only have to put actual clothes on, but will be forced to wear layers, coats, hats, gloves AND if they go out, they’ll have to stay out for at least 30 minutes. Works like a charm.
Step 2: Pull out ALL.THE.STUFF
We keep a collection of old towels for cleaning up spills and they work perfectly for this. Cover any solid flooring in your house — tile and/or a laundry room work great. Pull out every kitchen utensil you can think of (measuring cups, spoons, spatulas, cookie sheets, cake pans, empty plastic containers, etc.), and let the kids help and…let them go crazy. It’s only going to get wet and you can wash it all easily.
Step 3: Get the snow!
Using buckets, plastic containers or even bowls, go outside and scoop up as much of the white stuff as you can handle.
Step 4: Let them go to town
Seriously, every time we’ve done this, our kids have been entertained for at least two hours. In addition to building, digging and tasting, we’ve used the snow to do experiments. Will the snow melt faster in a cup or a bowl? Will it melt faster closer to the heating vent or not? They can hide items in the snow, color the snow with markers — there really is no limit to what they can do. And the best part is everyone stays warm!
Step 5: Clean up
Toss everything in the dishwasher and use the towels to dry up the mess. Bonus: you get your floors mopped!