Getting Real with Kira Hazledine

Hallie loves the outdoors. Even when she’s inside, she’s obsessed with everything outside. Is it snowing? Is the moon out? Hallie loves to play with the sun beams, and she’s a huge fan of watching outside the window. Whether Hallie sees birds, dogs, cars, or whatever, she will point it out. So, what am I supposed to do with this child that insists on going “bye-bye” or “outside!” every second, even though it’s freezing outside?

Now, I know there are colder places where children and adults alike have learned to function with below freezing temperatures regularly. If you didn’t go out to play in such weather, you would never see the light of day. Unfortunately for Hallie, I HATE winter. I hate the cold. I begrudgingly take her out if its 32 degrees and over and let her run free like the wild child she is. Thank god we don’t live in one of those places where it’s always cold.

But it just happens to be too cold for all that where we do live.

It’s winter, and Hallie and I find ourselves trapped inside. Sometimes it isn’t always the wintry weather, but one or both of us is sick. It’s just a miserable season, but this is how I keep my rambunctious child busy. This is how we survive.

  1. Dance parties – Hallie is a sucker for dance parties. She is obsessed with music, and if she really is driving me nuts, I only have to ask if she wants to listen to songs. When that gets boring, we will get out the Beat Bell toy that clearly wants me to suffer, as Hallie and I are asked to jump and stomp and glide and clap.
  2. Snacks – So many snacks. Because, who ever needs to stop eating? Not us. Here, have a Cheeto. You’re driving me nuts, and I need peace and quiet for at least the ten seconds it will take you to eat that.
  3. Painting – Oh yes, I went there. Hallie is not usually allowed to paint, because holy crap. It’s a mess! She paints her hands, my hands, and occasionally the paper. Hallie has a blast though, so it’s a perfect winter day activity. If you’re prepared for the mess, I would recommend an oversized t-shirt as a smock.
  4. Exercise – This might be worse than painting for some moms, but Hallie really enjoys her exercise. It also helps get those wiggles out and gives her an excuse to run and jump. Usually I reserve our workout for after nap, but some mornings, we do an extra one for my sanity.
  5. Story time – Hallie really enjoys sitting down with her books, and we make it fun by piling them on her bed and reading to her stuffed animals too. I let Hallie read to me, by pointing out pictures and colors, and this is a good one especially if I’ve got work to do.
  6. Find an indoor play space – Unfortunately not everyone has access to a play center, but even the library is a perfect opportunity to get out of the house. This is also limited to whether you have the car, which we don’t always have. Womp. So, it made the list last.

These are my go-to strategies for a restless child. How do you handle it when your kids are cooped up?