Friday, January 8, 2010

Ten places to amuse kids during bad weather

I want to point you to a guest post I wrote that went up today at a very cool online magazine some friends of mine run: Catapult Magazine. It's an article giving you ten ways to amuse your children indoors but away from home, perfect for the rain I hear hitting the skylights even now.


Read it here at Catapult Magazine. A foretaste:
... But then winter — and reality — struck. We live in Seattle. It rains a lot here. ...  I mean, sure, we still spend time outdoors — going on walks and bike rides — but there’s only so much time you can spend in 40-degree drizzle before you start feeling waterlogged.
girl watching penguin at aquariumSam and I, therefore, have had to get creative in finding locations to bring a rowdy toddler that are shielded from some of the worst of the winter weather but are away from home and affordable to us.

It's an extension of my previous article, Rainy-day movement ideas for toddlers, which gave options for moving within the four walls of a house. This winter, Sam and I find ourselves needing to move Mikko outside the house so that the other of us can get work done in our home business, but the weather has been less than considerate. In that vein, we've had to get creative, and these are ten of our best ideas so far, including memberships to the zoo, running errands (hey, whatever works!), and public swims (my choice for today, in fact!).

This article is part of the Ten Things issue, which is an annual event at Catapult. This is why there are ten items in my list, though to be honest — well, it's me. So I kind of cheated and shoved some more in there. And now that I look around at the other articles, I'm realizing I'm super wordy. Oops.

And yet, and yet...it's not even enough.

Please, if you have more ideas for things to do, please tell me. Please. Sam was reading this article over for me before I sent it in, and he was saying, "Gee, with so many things we have to do, you'd think we wouldn't always be running out of ideas to fill the time."

If you can, leave the comments on the Catapult site to make me look popular. Wouldn't that be nice of you!

Catapult Magazine is part of the insightful and innovative nonprofit organization Culture Is Not Optional, run by Rob & Kirstin Vander Giessen-Reitsma. Check 'em out. My thanks to them and *cino for letting me post.

Photo courtesy marsy from stock.xchng

6 comments:

cypress sun said...

Good article. I really struggle with this. We don't have most of these options where I live. And then there is the $ issue for the ones we do have. And then there is the energetic boy syndrome for the free ones.... :) The best activity for us right now is "playnastics" at a gymnasium for kids. Lots of running, jumping, creativity, and other children having fun.

Jamie said...

Hi- I didn't comment over at the other site b.c you have to have an account. I thought that it was a great article and I didn't think that it was wordy at all- didn't compare to any of the others though.

We have a place here called Planet Jump. It's a bunch of HUGE inflatable bounce house slide dealie things blown up inside. You pay $8 or so for open play and the kids can climb, bounce and slide to their heart's content. They have a snack bar too, which is nice. It's great for new walkers because they can climb around the bounce houses and fall all they want without really getting hurt. Once school is out though, I think that it would be a nightmare with the bigger kids running around.

Oooh- just thought of another one- the airport! We stumbled on this one by accident- we met my mom there just before she left on a flight to show her that her grandson was, in fact, walking. It was not a bad place to hang out for a bit and parking was free for the first hour.

Your list was great though- going to bookmark it and come back to it for those days when we just need to get OUT! Thanks!

mamamilkers said...

great article! I really struggle with this, too. Thanks!

Melodie said...

We actually took our kids for a hike in the rain today. It's not something we normally do but all bundled up everyone had a great time. Made me realize that we're really not going to "melt" if we get a little wet. And being out in nature is always better than being inside, even if it's not usually what we do ;)

makinglifefromscratch said...

Thanks for this! Since we are moving to the PNW soon, rainy day ideas are going to be very helpful :)

Hobo Mama said...

Playnastics & Planet Jump sound perfect for getting the antsies out! I didn't even think of the airport, but you're right — that would be fascinating. I had an idea of riding the commuter rail train just anywhere, back and forth, because Mikko loves trains. Amtrak & tourist trains are too expensive, but the commuter ones are only a few bucks a ride. The only problem will be disturbing our fellow commuters. :)

We've been taking some wet walks too recently, because I can't just stay inside all winter. Last night Mikko fell asleep in the stroller, in the rain. I ducked into a Tully's & draped my scarf over the canopy to block out the light, and he actually napped for once — bizarre!

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