Ideas For a Rainy Day
Winter in Seattle can be a challenging time for parents. It’s cold, it rains and it gets dark at 4 pm. Cabin fever starts to set in pretty quickly around here. Late afternoons are usually the toughest time at our house because Finley doesn’t wake up from her nap until it’s already dark outside, and most of the kids’ favorite places to go (science center, zoo, etc.) are closing up for the day. Jackson and Finley are pretty good about keeping themselves entertained for a bit, but being stuck inside for a long period of time is almost never a good idea for our family. The house will inevitably become destroyed, the kids will start fighting out of boredom, and I start to go a little crazy. In order to prevent this from becoming the norm, I usually have a daily afternoon activity planned for us. Here are a few ideas for those of you who are also constantly looking for fun activities that will keep your kids busy and not killing each other.
1. Go Fishing
What You’ll Need: Origami paper, heavy duty magnets, super glue, twine (or some type of string) and a stick
This is a fun little fishing game that I created for the kids last year. It’s pretty simple. First, I found instructions on how to fold origami fish online and then glued magnets in between the top and bottom folds.
Next, I wrapped string around another magnet, glued it in place, and wrapped the other end of the string around a small stick. This is a great indoor activity for younger toddlers who are working on perfecting those motor skills. It can also be transformed into a color or counting game for your older ones! Jackson and Finley like to “cook” their fish in their play kitchen after they’ve caught them.
2. Gem Trees
What You’ll Need: Paint and paintbrushes (other your drawing tools of choice), paper, glue and plastic gems
The leaves may be falling off our trees outside right now, but we’re helping our painted trees bloom inside! This project is probably geared towards older toddlers and preschoolers because of the small parts involved (you don’t want your babies eating those delicious-looking gems). It also takes some patience because it’s a three-part project if you use paint: 1) painting the tree, 2) waiting for the tree to dry, and 3) gluing the gems on. Drawing a tree with crayons or markers is another option. You can also purchase self-adhesive gems, but gluing is half the fun in our house!
Here’s a shot of Finley’s finished product!
3. Pasta Creations
This is an oldie but a goodie. It’s amazing how imaginative kids can be with just a package of dried spaghetti. Jackson “built” pasta pictures of our house, a dog house for Bruno and Stella and even a firehouse! Finley was just really into breaking the sticks apart into tiny pieces, but we helped her turn some of her sticks into a letter recognition game.
4. Nature Scavenger Hunt
Get bundled up and go outside for a Nature Scavenger Hunt! Sometimes you just need to get out of the house no matter how wet or cold it is, even if it’s just for a walk around the block. I decided to make our walks a little more interesting by creating these lists for our scavenger hunts.
Jackson and Finley love the idea of filling their scavenger bags up with random things they’ve collected from our lists. You can adjust the “clues” and their level of difficulty based on your child’s age, so this can be a great learning experience for kids of all ages. It’s a perfect way for your kids to practice identifying colors, work on their spelling and counting skills, and experiment with size comparison.
Here are a few treasures we found from our last walk, based off of the clues on the list pictured above.
This is an art project we created from our leaf-identifying scavenger hunt last month. We call it, “RayneBo of Autumn Leaves.”
These rainy day activities are some of our favorites. I hope we were able to provide some fun ideas for you too! Stay tuned for my kids holiday arts and craft posts throughout this next month! The holidays have arrived!
For more on kids’ craft ideas, check out our Customized Gift Wrap.
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