It’s raining out, and you can’t go to the playground and dissociate while your kids run around? Never fear, there are many rainy day indoor activities that can occupy your little treasures. Then you can get back to the hard work of going on Pinterest to look at pictures of how to make your kids a sensory table or a busy bag. If you pin enough pictures, it’s the same thing as actually making it.
The best part: these activities are all done with the stuff you keep around the house anyway. Craft supplies are for engaged-parent losers.
1. Make stuff out of aluminum foil. What, that doesn’t look like a duck to you? Use your imagination.
2. Play “Cleaning People.” Give each child a Magic Eraser, then put them to work cleaning the walls. This can go on for a long time (read: 10 minutes). I was astounded by the enthusiasm, as they certainly don’t see me modeling enthusiasm for house cleaning.
3. Play “Why Don’t You Look Like That Anymore, Mommy?”, also known as “sit them in front of your wedding video.” Note they will also ask why Daddy still looks the same.
4. Play “Virtual Playdate,” meaning they can watch you go on Facebook and point out all your friends’ kids. Wave hello as you scroll by.
5. Find some reality show that appeals to both you and your kids. A good one is Supernanny. My kids laugh with Schadenfreude when the kids on that show get a time out. Good times.
6. Play “Let’s Call Daddy At Work and Complain About Our Day.” Oh, sorry, that’s for during nap time.
7. Play “Where’s Baby?” In this fun game that I play every day, rain or not, you start doing something else while your preschooler, toddler, and baby are playing nicely together, then return to them a bit later and notice someone is missing. Everyone look frantically for baby. This game can double as your cardio for the day.
8. play “Stain Stick.” In this adventure, you whip out the Stain Stick and apply it to wherever your kids’ clothes are dirty. Then let them Stain Stick each other. This game just doesn’t seem to get old, proving yet again that the heaps of toys in my home were a huge waste of money.
9. Play “Toddlers and Tiaras.” They get to wear Mommy’s makeup while you act really crazy and obsessive and start a fight with one of the judges (played by a large stuffed animal). You can really get into this game.
10. Snack time. We all know that we often feed our kids to pacify them. Why not own it? I favor an immediately-post-breakfast snack, followed by mid-morning snack and pre-lunch snack. When I’ve timed these out correctly, I’ve succeeded in having my kids sitting at the kitchen table with their mouths too full to make noise for at least 80% of my morning. Challenge yourself to beat my percentage!
By following these tips, you too can turn your rainy day into a wonderful magical adventure for your children. And by day, I mean 1 hour, which is how long it will take to do all ten of these things consecutively. After that, feel free to turn on reality TV and let the children run wild. Who are you supposed to be here, June Cleaver?
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