A lot of the same stuff we do when the sun shines, but indoors
It’s probably too late to save my sanity tbh, but the children are still recoverable. So in the colder weather we play more games. Do more jigsaws. Read even more books. And yes, probably watch more television.
I like games that can be played with the whole family. But sometimes I have to focus on one child or another. Colour and shape snap from Brainbox arrived this week, and is great for the younger children. Bizarrely, Smallest can see shape snaps but not colour ones. Or is it the other way around? She’s determined there’s only one kind anyway, so I guess we’ll be playing that a fair bit. I like that it’s in a small case too.
Another small game that’s good on the go and works well for mixed ages is Dobble. Each card has a number of pictures on, but only one picture in common with other cards. Smallest is good at this one, though her vocabulary lets her down from time to time. Bizarrely Tigerboy joins in occasionally, he points at the picture in common. Which shows that you don’t need speech to think (take that philosopher whose name I can’t remember who said animals can’t think because they don’t speak.)
Shared activities here include jigsaws. Another all age thing – although Tigerboy doesn’t tend to be much use at the really big ones. Stick a big jigsaw on the kitchen table and everyone joins in in passing. Great fun. And the bigger the jigsaw, the more time taken. Which works for me
Crafting, films, and books use up a lot of our winter time. I’ve got Smallest started on a french knitting nancy – it turned out that the sock loom I bought was a bit complicated just yet. She likes sewing – I get kits that have the holes already punched and we blanket stitch around the edges. Beading – she loves to make bracelets, and even Tigerboy can thread beads on pipecleaners. And of course, painting, colouring and sticking are favourites.
The older children amuse themselves. Small is enraptured by minecraft at the moment. I’m planning on getting him a raspberry pi and encouraging him to more programming. Reminds me of years and years ago when my parents bought me a ZX81. And look where I am now. Big plays guitar and is writing a book. Maybe they are two halves of me. Although I didn’t get my guitar til I was a few years older. We all read lots – sometimes the same thing and then discuss it, which is great fun, and extends a book hugely. Always looking for family book club suggestions, feel free to drop them in the usual place.
What do you do to use up the winter hours?