El Niño is coming my way. If it’s coming your way too, you know you’re in for back to back rainy days where going out to play is not really an option. Before long, your stash of family board games will become boring and you’ll relax your rules about screen time. Then, you’ll regret that decision as you’re prying the tablet out of your zombie child’s cold lifeless hands. Instead of giving in, try to have a few fun go-to activities that you only do when the bad weather hits.
These are my three favorite oh-my-gosh-it’s-been-raining-for-a-week-and-everyone-is-going-stir-crazy activities that I only pull out when the going gets tough.
Homemade Play Dough
Sure, you can buy it, but when you spend 10 minutes making it yourself, not only is it cheaper but your kids are AMAZED by your magical powers (This is a dye-free recipe but not meant to be eaten, even if it smells delicious, please monitor your children when in use). Even big kids will love this
Mix dry ingredients, place in pot, then add wet ingredients and stir. Cook over low heat until it is thick but soft. Remove from heat and let cool. Stays fresh in an airtight container for 2-4 weeks.
Secret Society Dinner Meeting
This is an easy one, but it takes a little planning on your part. First, think up a creative name for your secret society. It can be wacky, silly, serious, or related to a family favorite show or movie. Next, let each of your kids pick out a character to play. Have them make up the character’s name, some distinct attributes, and let them put together an outfit from their clothes, your clothes, dress up clothes, you can even make paper hats and beards. Type up a menu in the theme of your secret society dinner (super spy spaghetti, special guard garden salad, and gadget guru garlic bread) and then call the meeting to order! Stay in character for the entire meal, who knows, you may end up with long term fantasy fun on your hands!
Mom and Dad’s Cooking School
I know, cooking with the kids seems so tedious, but you’re stuck in the house anyway, why not spend an extra hour making dinner? Set up the kitchen with ingredients, have the kids wear aprons, and give them the hands on experience of making a meal. Even if it’s just teaching them how to make a sandwich and put some chips on the side of the plate, you’ll be teaching the kids an important life skill, building memories, and possibly lining things up so that you get a night off of cooking once in a while if you work the system right!