Winter brings rain, cold, snow and darkness… Wow! This turned out quite depressing. I do love winter. Or at least, I used to love it when it meant curling up on the sofa drinking tea. Now, it means: What the heck I do with a two-year-old and so few hours of sunlight?
For me, the biggest issue is the sunlight. Rain or snow, you can always go out and play for a while (with appropriate clothing and shoes). But when the sun doesn’t come up until 9 and it goes away at 4 or 5 PM, what can you do?
Here are some ideas for physical activities you can do with your toddler:
- Playing with a cloth ball
We have a couple of cloth or plush balls. We play with them a lot. I like them because they are soft so it’s harder to break something.
- Hide and seek
I think we all have played this game. If you are in a big group, you can do a variation where one person hides with some sweets and the rest of the party must search for him. The kick is that once you find him, you stay with him on the hideout eating sweets until the last person on the party finds the hideout. As time goes by, more and more people are crumbled on the same spot. It’s quite amusing to see four children hidden under the same table eating sweets. If they are having a good time, you can act as you didn’t see them and continue searching for them (by searching I mean drinking a cup of coffee or going to the toilet or enjoying 5 mins for your self).
- Scavenger’s hunt
For this one, I draw some objects on a piece of paper and we search for them together. Sometimes I just say, “Let’s gather all the red toys we have” or “Let’s search for two cars“. I love this game because you can gradually increase difficulty as your children grow. It is also a good way to tidy up the room.
- Simon says
I think this one doesn’t require much explanation. I try to incorporate a lot of jumps and silly moves to make it funnier. It’s important to let the children be Simon too.
- Crazy dancing
Talking about silly, who doesn’t like silly dancing? It’s a great activity to release stress for both parent and children. 90s-euro disco is always a hit.
- Obstacle course
This one might require a little prep. You need to move furniture and toys to create an obstacle course for your little one. With time he/she will take part on the design of the course.
The most important thing with these activities is to be present and fully committed. Leave behind all the boring adult stuff and loosen up. The goofier you act, the funnier will be. You will relieve some stress while bonding with your little one.