The winter months can feel endless, especially when you’re wrangling kids through them — but they don’t have to. With the season well into it’s when-will-it-end phase, I’ve got five go-to hacks for making the winter days more meaningful at home with your little ones.
As a mom of five living in New York City, the cold days are long…and inevitable. In my experience, all you have to do is be prepared for when a storm or cold front hits, and you’ll be able to use it as an opportunity to create meaningful and special moments for you and your kids in the comfort of your home.
1. Start your morning routine the night before.
During the dark winter months, I’ve found it’s helpful to complete as many morning to-do tasks as I can once the kids go down to sleep. Prepping breakfast items, any of my own personal tasks and household chores before my little ones wake the following morning gives me more extra minutes to tend to them with my undivided attention, and means we get to spend some uninterrupted quality time together before the day begins.
2. Make a game of mundane everyday tasks together.
Especially when the weather keeps you stuck indoors, simple things we do multiple times a day like brushing teeth, washing hands, tying shoes, can begin to feel like a chore with our kiddos when they are spending too much time inside. Having a go-to silly song we sing every time we’re at the bathroom sink together and tying our shoelaces or playing “Simon says” while cleaning up can make the moment feel more meaningful and connect both you and your little one.
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If you missed it, Beatrice and Madalena’s bedroom reveal went live on my blog yesterday ? Their tiny room might be my favorite of all the tiny rooms in our apartment. If you’re curious about why toddler beds vs. cribs and how they’re sleeping or any other details, go read the blog post because I posted in depth about all of it (and links to everything, too.) Thank you to @chasingpaper for gifting us the prettiest removable wallpaper in all the land. A million more photos in my blog post (link in my stories right now…) #homedecor #kidsroom #twins #cityliving #apartmentliving #ontheblogtoday
3. Make sick days short and fun.
As the weather gets colder, the potential for sick days goes up. Helping your little ones feel better fast means getting back to spending more quality time together sooner — and is a chance to actually make some special wintertime memories together. Instead of having to negotiate with them to take medicine that makes a mess and tastes yucky, try Children’s TYLENOL® Dissolve Packs — a new pain-relieving option for kids age 6-11 that comes in a powder form and dissolves on your kids tongue in seconds without water. After giving them medicine that actually tastes like wild berry, having a bundle of fun and comforting items to pass the time indoors together will transform a boring sick day into a fun stay-at-home-vacation day! For fun, try bath bombs, a new book, a favorite game or playing cards. For comfort, try lollipops for a sore throat, tissues, lip balm, cooling pads for their forehead or a cooling eye mask for when they are feeling warm, and of course a water bottle.
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Hello from us??? Just two parents who’ve finally nursed the last of our 5 children back to health and are feeeeeling it today. When it rains it pours! We’ve just seen the flu, an ear infection, a lingering cough from a crazy long virus AND pink eye make it’s way through our home. I hope your January is off to a better start than our January???? This means we’re in the clear until NEXT January, right?!???
4. Eliminate your own tech if possible!
It’s incredible how we’re able to stay connected with technology in the palm of our hands. However, where you’re spending close and quality time indoors it’s important to remove the distractions to show our children that they are our top priority. Even just cuddling up together on the sofa and having a moment of quiet together goes a long way. And who knows, it might open the doors to a meaningful conversation, question or chat!
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Happy New Year! I like taking time in the beginning of January to reflect on all my blessings, and find a focus for the coming year. Even though truth be told, I’d still probably categorize January as my least favorite month of them all (it’s cold, Christmas decorations come down and it gets dark early…) but finalizing my intentions and direction for the new year helps it feel more purposeful. . . . The last decade has taught me more than I could have imagined upon entering it. In many ways, it was painfully hard at times, with more stretching and growing and soul searching than I bargained for. But it’s undoubtedly the one I’ll always look back on with so many fond memories because it’s the decade where the births of our five babies took place. With so many firsts – first pregnancies with baby kicks and expanding baby bumps to first physical holdings and first feedings together. So many firsts for a girl taking on the role of mother for the very first time, too. A lot of navigating and fumbling and trying again and again. And then figuring out how to do it with two, then three, then two at once plus the three. It’s the decade where a fun little blog turned into something more, and @tiesandfries resigned from his job to work on Love Taza along side me. The decade where our own marriage deepened and thrived as we grew in love and laughter and friendship. Where we learned to co-work, co-parent, and build the life we want to live together, as unconventional as it might be at times. I blogged more about this in my latest blog post, but we learned what works for us and what doesn’t, and while we’ve intentionally put our focus on our family the last few years (as opposed to a lot of big projects and opportunities that came our way), we are so excited for the many things coming next, with family still coming first, always. always. always. . . . With all this looking back at the last decade, my mind started wandering towards what this new decade might look like the other night. (Continued in comments…)
5. Inject music into your day together.
Winter days don’t have to be sad times, whether you’re taking medicine, finishing prepping for the day at home or walking to school, having a fun theme song you like to bust out and sing together is something we love. If they are little, having hand motions or actions you do together during the tune will make it a lot of fun! And stopping your day to have a small dance party in your living room can’t be beat (pun intended)!
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