Surviving snow days with a toddler

Thursday, February 9, 2017 – Snowmageddon in the New England area!Β 

Update: Things got in the way (namely my toddler and a terrible cold) so it’s now Sunday, February 12. Believe me or not, it’s still snowing outside and more to come tomorrow! Welcome to New England!Β 

Living in the New England area means having an unpredictable winter season. It’s only the beginning of February and we have had 8 snow days with today bringing the heaviest snow so far. Before having kids, snow days means a day of sleeping in and Netflix marathon. But since we are a minimum-screen-time family, I have to be extra creative to get through a (super windy and cold) snow day. Below are some of our favorite activities on a snowy day:Β 

Painting the snow:Β 

 

The set up is super easy: grab a bin, covered it with some snow, prepare a few cups of water + food coloring (or liquid watercolor for a more vibrant result) and brushes, and let your child make her/his design on the snow. I started doing this when Alia was 18 months old and it never gets old.Β 

Sensory bin:Β 

 

I wish I had taken more pictures of our snow sensory bins. But I basically fill up a bin with snow, add animal figurines that live in a cold environment and blocks for her to play with (left picture). You could also simple add some tools such as a spoon, measuring cups, molding tools for your child to create things using snow.Β 

Make a snowman inside:

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No more Cling On: Independent Play in a YES space

Note from yours truly: It’s a special post coz you get to watch clips of Alia play! πŸ™‚Β 

Do you also have (or had) a Cling On at home? Wait, what’s a Cling On? It’s a term my husband and I came up with to describe Alia when she’s super duper clingy! We went through a phase where she wanted to do nothing but attached herself onto me, literally! I couldn’t leave her side without her crying. Forget about leaving the room to cook or go to the bathroom, she’d cry if we’re a few feet apart.Β And there were days whenΒ she’d play with her toys WHILEΒ holding onto my shirt. I’m not kidding… On Cling On days, I was very exhausted byΒ 11 a.m.! Forget about naptime, I was definitely ready for bedtime hehehe!Β 

This happened quite often when Alia was around 11-13 months old. I asked around (aka Google “Why is my child very clingy?”), and people said that it’s a phase. Honestly, for awhile I thought thatΒ this Cling On thing would never ended…Β 

Not only it was physically and emotionally draining, but this Cling On phase got me worried that she wouldn’t develop the ability to play independently. Independent play means that a child is able to Β explore the objects and space in his environment without an adult assistance. In other words, the ability to entertain him/herself. Let’s be honest, we all need some downtime during the day, and it’s almost impossible to have one when you have a clingy child who decides to strap him/herself onto you all day. Sigh…Β 

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