ways to beat cabin fever, sometimes you just have to bundle up and head outside. After the jump you'll find a list of 10 ways to have a little fun (without sticking your tongue to a flag pole) outdoors in during the long winter months. All of these ideas are bound to keep your little ones tied up for a solid half hour... make that an hour if you include the time it takes to get everyone bundled up. Make sure to finish things off with a warm cup of cocoa!
- Create A Snow Palace: Even though it's cold outside, it's tolerable if you're building a structure as super COOL as these. Just add 20 drops of food coloring to any pail of water, freeze overnight and then tap gently to remove (you can grease the vessel if you wish, or drop into warm water for a second). Stack them up and make the ULTIMATE snowball fort (if you can't tell we're really quite smitten with the idea!
- Build An Obstacle Course: Even though it's cold, there aren't many kids who won't jump at the chance to have a race, or live up to a challenge—especially if there's remedial prizes involved! Head outdoors and use what you have or mound up snow to make ramps, tilts and turns around your street, park or even backyard. Use patio furniture and play equipment or tote along a spray bottle with food coloring and water inside. It's perfect to mark a starting/finish line on the go!
- Create A Bird Watching Station: Even if it's just too cold to head outside (no matter how well you're bundled) try setting up a nature station near a window so kids can chill out and watch the squirrels and birds alike have a winter snack. Maybe encourage them to draw birds they see, or make a bird coloring page for smaller ones to color in while they observe.
- Make Suet Feeders: Making suet feeders isn't as difficult as you might think. Simply melt lard and pour over birdseed and other nuts and berries, just make sure the birds don't eat better than you do!
- Make A Winter Sun Catcher: The one thing you can count on is the cold during the winter months. Fill a bread pan with fruit slices, berries and foliage for a winter wonderland sun catcher!