Being at home with my children all day long gives me plenty of time to learn with them, play with them and run errands with them. However, in the midst of every day chores and activities, value of our interactions and connections gets a bit diminished, unfortunately. Sometimes you simply get overwhelmed with the days tasks and goals and as a result your kids and spouse end up on the back bleachers. I believe it’s so important to switch up your schedule, try a different routine for the day and include some family days in your agenda. Family time, where you can focus on each other and have fun being with each other is so crucial for our children’s development. They should be able to see that family time is a priority and being all together is important to both mom and dad. During the winter months, however, it may seem like getting out might be a bit more difficult, because of the cold weather. But these dates aren’t outside, so check them out!
But don’t be discouraged! I’ve come up with 8 awesome WINTER dates that the whole family can enjoy! Make a tradition in your family to go out (as a family) at least once in every two weeks. This will help your family stay connected!
1. Go to the local library
Most libraries have a smaller “children’s library” with books, computers and other activities. Our local library in Bedford, NH has plenty of fun things to do. My kids love the Thomas the Train railroad, loads of Duplo, puppets, books, iPads and computers (which we didn’t use yet). It even has a train exhibit, where you can push a button and the train starts to ride.That’s their favorite!
2. Visit a children’s museum
Kids love children’s museums because they are fun! With all the gadgets, exhibits, visuals and experiments they get to do, the fun is never ending. And let me tell you, the adults will be just as involved pushing and playing with all the buttons!
3. Go to an indoor trampoline place
The first time we went to a place like this, my kids DID NOT WANT TO LEAVE! This was so much fun for them, a whole gym full of all sorts of trampolines.The best part was the pit of foam balls! My husband and I felt like kids all over again, jumping and bouncing with our kids. This is a must-try.
4. Go to the mall
This idea may not be the best if you’re actually looking for something to buy, but make it more of a family hangout. Go in and check out the sales, but don’t make that the priority. Go get some food at the food court and spend the time being together. Most malls have some sort of children’s indoor play areas, where kids can run around and you can enjoy watching your kids while sipping some DD coffee.
5. Indoor playgrounds
There are a lot of indoor inflatable playgrounds around, which are a great way for kids to get their exercise in the winter time. You can bring in a snack, or buy one there, but make sure to bring some water as kids get very hot running around. Bouncy houses, slides and more will keep your kids busy for quite some time and you’ll have fun chasing them around too!
6. Go to the movies
Check out the movies and showtimes at your local cinema. Find a Disney movie or a movie appropriate for your kid’s age and enjoy it with some popcorn and a soda. If this is your child’s first experience to the movies, they will have a blast and seeing their excitement is priceless.
7. Hit the ice skating rink
Even though you may not be a pro at ice-skating, this fun activity is worth it! If your kids don’t know how to ice-skate and keep themselves up, most ice skating rink provide an ice skating aid (which in some places come as animals like penguins and such).
8. Go to a restaurant
Don’t expect this to be some sort of romantic date night. Going to the restaurant isn’t always easy, however, a lot of places give out crayons and a coloring page for your kids to be occupied while waiting. But it’s a good idea to bring your own in case they don’t provide you of any. It also helps to know what you’re ordering prior to coming in, so check out the menu online and order when you’re asked what drinks you’d like. This will save you some waiting time. Enjoy a quick bite and box it if you need to go home spontaneously. But this outing will help you achieve some sort of variety in your day to day activities.
Now go ahead and enjoy your wonderful family!