Oct 23, 2012
5 Ways to Survive Winter with Small Children
This morning it snowed. And snowed. And snowed. Last I heard we'd received well over 10 cm of the white stuff. My commute to work took nearly 90 minutes. There is so much snow I don't believe that it will completely melt before it comes to "stay". Winter is here.
The problem is that it is only October 23. As in, I now have to figure out how to fit the Halloween costumes over the snowsuits. For real.
I don't mind snow or winter. God help me if I did, considering that it's here for the better part of the year. But as I was reminded this morning, being prepared to face the elements is much different when one has little people who also need to be properly attired when they go outside, lest I be judged as a horrible mother. Also, I think they will enjoy the outdoors more if they can move their fingers and toes.
If every morning is as challenging as today was, well then I am going to lose my mind before Christmas. As I was contemplating all of the ways to make my life easier over the next several months, I came up with a few tips I thought I could share. I realize that for most of you reading, snow is but a far-off dream. Or nightmare. I don't know. But even if you don't have snow now, it may come eventually and I just want you to be prepared.
5. Make Sure All the Children Have All the Proper Attire
They need proper coats and snow pants and toques and scarves and boots and mittens. If you can, buy a second pair of mittens so that when one of the children loses theirs you will avoid the mad scramble through the bins of winter accessories trying to find something - ANYTHING - to put on his hands. He ended up wearing a pair of my old fleece gloves. I did not make my naughty kitten who had lost his mittens cry....but it was close.
4. Have a Designated Spot for Everyone's Winter Gear.
We have a small plastic bin for each child's hats, scarves, mittens, etc. in our entrance. (Note: I cannot call them mitts while this Presidential election campaign is happening. I just can't.). When it comes off the head, neck, or hands it will go in the bin. Who am I kidding. This probably won't happen. Instead, it will end up on the floor, on the couch, or being used as a dog toy. But at least I will have somewhere to put everything once I've picked it up from its landing spot.
3. Go Outside aka Don't Be a Weather-Wuss
It will be a long, long, winter if you don't learn how to get outside and enjoy the outdoors. Last year, Murray built a pretty awesome snow fort in the back yard for the kids to play on and we took them for lots of rides in the sled. This year we need to find a better hill for toboganning and perhaps Gavin will get over his fear of falling on the ice and learn how to skate. Being active outside in the winter is not as intimidating as it might sound - cold! snow! ice! - at least, not once you get everyone dressed in their parkas and snow pants.
2. Give Yourself More Time
In the winter, it takes longer to get anywhere. The roads are crappy and people forget how to drive. It's dark and harder to wake up in the morning. Not to mention the time it takes to put on all of the winter outdoor attire. Most of my frustration comes when I'm running behind and not only can we not find mittens but no one other than me is even wearing pants. Set your alarm 1/2 hour earlier and promise yourself to not hit snooze. Believe me, your sanity will thank you.
1. Move to Hawaii
Seriously, if none of the above helps, then just get the heck out. I mean, why not? I would.
What are your tips for getting through winter?