How to survive a snow day with kids

My phone rang at 4:35 a.m. this morning. I didn’t answer it because I just knew it was the school robot calling to tell me the news that schools have been closed for the day due to treacherous weather conditions.

While many parents bemoan a snow day as some form of torture, a big part of me got excited. I still remember those mornings as a kid when my mom would make me hot chocolate, tell me it was a school day, let me get super excited, and then threaten Kingdom Come if I interrupted her work from home day.

That’s when the reality of my day hit me. I have to juggle two kids, the great possibility losing power because I live in a rural place, and try my best not to go stir crazy. Here is my plan, jot this down, folks, it might help you too!

Get the house ready

  1. Pull out the generator and get it ready for use.
  2. Gather all the flashlights, candles, extra batteries, and matches and keep them in an easy to get space that is away from small hands.
  3. Fill water bottles with fresh water and store in the fridge. Fill empty water jugs or milk jugs (clean them first) with water and put in the freezer. This will help keep it cold if the power goes out, plus you’ll have extra drinking water.
  4. Make a quick mental note of what kinds of meals you can make with no power. If you have nothing and you can still get to a store then opt for simple things like sandwiches, veggies and cheese sticks, granola and protein bars, and juice.
  5. Make sure the pets all have full bowls of fresh water and enough food for a day or two.

Get the kids ready

Grab a pen and a sheet of paper and make a quick list of what you HAVE to do and what your kids WANT to do. You’ll pretty much spend the day negotiating between lists. Here are some activities that my kids love to do:

  1. Make sugar cookies (so long as we have power)
  2. Play in the snow, of course
  3. Blanket forts in the living room
  4. Watch PBS, holiday movies, or play on their tablets
  5. Reading – we try to amp up the fun with goofy voices and sometimes dress up in costumes
  6. Art projects – cut up brown paper grocery bags and tape them to the wall then hand your kids some markers and let them create murals.
  7. Board games are a GREAT way to pass the time
  8. Bubble baths with toys (so long as we have power)
  9. Have the kids help make lunch (so long as you have the patience of a Saint)
  10. Grab a pile of stuff like paper towel tubes, tin foil, cardboard, markers, glue, etc., and try to build something fun like a robot or invent a time machine.

Snow days are fun, they really are, especially for kids. While I stress out and watch gray hairs pop up on my head while trying figure out how to get work done, prep for the loss of power, and keep my kids from destroying my house I”ll be trying my best to remember how excited I used to get as a kid too.

Stay warm and dry, folks!