Tag: snow table

Snow Day at the Beach

Here in the Northeast we are covered in about 30+ inches of snow. It’s safe to say I am over the snow. Every day I look out my window to a sea of white. It hinders my view at every stop sign and I have to tether my kids to the back deck before letting them go play for fear I might loose them. It’s seriously a lot of snow.

Every morning I wake up and think warm thoughts and remember my days at the beach. Ah… my toes in the warm sand and cool drink in my hand. I must be thinking about those days pretty hard because my daughter said to me today, “mommy I want to go to the beach!” I thought you and me both sister!

It is rare that inspiration and money come to me at the same time.  But today was my lucky day. We made a trip to the dollar store to get glass gems I want for another project I am dreaming about (you’ll have to wait for that post). While there I saw some glass sea shapes and I thought, “why not? I’ll figure out some way to use them!” We finished up our shopping trip which included some great bargains on plastic storage boxes.

We arrived home pretty close to dinner time and of course the girls were asking to watch TV. I knew that late in the day I’d never get them to turn it off to come to the dinner table. So, I did some quick thinking and just gave them the box with the glass sea shapes to play with.

Sea glass shapes in a box.
Sea glass shapes in a box.

The gems alone were just enough to keep them occupied while I put dinner together. They were so fascinated by the shapes and the smooth side and the bumpy side. I was so fascinated by no interruptions that I used the time to hunt through their toys to find beach themed items. I let them play until dinner was served and brought the boxes back out after dinner. I asked if they want to help me build a beach in a box. Well, of course!

Here is the little cast of characters we included in the box:

People, animals and things you see at the beach.
People, animals and things you see at the beach.

I tried to include things we might see at the beach.

Then we filled it with “sand.” Since I often use whatever I already have on hand I had to wrack my brain a bit for some sand. Then I remembered I had a bunch of salt left over from our salt dough Christmas ornaments.

Our white sandy beach.
Our white sandy beach.

Ta-da! A white sandy beach!!

This is what it looks like all together:

All our beach items in the box.
All our beach items in the box.

The girls had so much fun with these boxes it was totally quiet for a FULL GLORIOUS HOUR! The only reason they stopped playing is it was time to take a bath and get ready for bed.

I will WARN you- this project wasn’t wet or sticky but will get messy when the salt spills outside the box. And it did. A lot. I’d advise against it if you are not in favor of messes entirely, or superstitious about spilling salt. (I had to fight the urge to throw a pinch over my shoulder while sweeping it all up).

I’m not going to lie and say my favorite part was seeing the joy on my kid’s faces (that was a bonus), or that it won me some rare quiet time. Honestly, my favorite part was that it only cost me $5.05 total ($2.52 each box). And, I felt pretty awesome coming up with this idea on the fly.

So, here’s looking forward to warm sunny days real soon!!

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Inside snow

In my previous post I confessed my deep feelings for snow. I really hate spending time in snow. It’s cold. It’s wet and it makes me a whiny mess. But, my kids do find the snow interesting and fun to play with.

Subscribing to my “whatever” philosophy means letting go of the drama and chaos to find a more peaceful existence. I don’t mean Zen like peace- although that would be nice and a bonus if it included wine, but more of an ease to our pace. If you’ve never had to dress two three year olds before, let me share that it can be a pretty dramatic process. One twin is ready to go before the other and starts to get antsy. That’s when the chaos sets in (and the whining). No one likes to sit and wait for help with their boots so they try to put them on without my help, which is a frustrating process when you have little hands. After 20 minutes of whining, kicking and crying (sometimes by me) I’m usually done with the whole process before we’ve even opened the door. Thankfully, Pintrest has a solution! Snow table!

A snow table means I don’t have to put on boots. I don’t have to rummage for hats and mittens and scarves. I don’t have to pretend to have fun when I’m really freezing! I LOVE YOU PINTREST! We usually stay in our jammies and play for as long as the interest holds. I try to throw in extra things to mix with, build with or change the color with to keep it interesting.

I pulled out the water table we had stored in the garage, recycled a left over plastic party table covering and rummaged through the house for some fun things to play in the snow with.

Reused our summer water table for a snow table.
Reused our summer water table for a snow table.

The plastic cover under the table catches all the over flow of snow. I can wrap it up and throw away, or if the mess is small enough wipe it up and I can use the cover again. I have this in the kitchen where the floor is tile so really if it goes passed the cover it’s no big deal.

Ice Legos in the snow.
Ice Legos in the snow.

Next: fill with snow! Now you can be done at the point and just hand the kids a few wooden spoons, or plastic cups. But, this time (since it was our 1 billionth snow day this year) I added in some rainbow colored ice cubes, penguin spoons and little toy polar bears. The girls loved it and I stayed toasty- win/win! My one daughter said, “It’s just like ice Legos!” Suuurre… yeah…that’s exactly what I was going for. *wink*

This busy fun lasted about 30 minutes before it was too cold to handle and both girls discovered their hands were now stained from the food coloring.

Food coloring does rub off on little hands.
Food coloring does rub off on little hands.

Whatever… it was 30 minutes of quiet with my cup of HOT coffee! Well worth the effort and mess!

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