Tag Archives: parenting

10 Inexpensive Family Friendly Ways to Relieve Cabin Fever

25 Feb

Today, on facebook, a friend posted a picture. Of her two boys. Crying that cry that makes your skin crawl and all you want to do is escape into the sunshine. That welcome-to-Monday-I-went-away-for-the-weekend-and-you-are-going-to-make-me-pay-for-it cry. If you have kids- you know the one.

And if you live in a place where winter is really winter-perhaps out your office window it looks like mine and you wonder if the snow will ever disappear. Knowing of course that in Minnesota it could still be here for another month or so.

snow, cabin fever

Outside my office window

If you are in THAT place of skin crawling, mind numbing, fingernail scratching cabin fever, maybe one of these ideas will help:

  1. Crank up some LOUD music and have a dance party. C’mon- you know you want to show your kids your moves.
  2. Make the granddaddy of all forts. Each family member creates a fort in one part of the house. Make tunnels to connect everyone’s forts. Use boxes, blankets, couch cushions and furniture.
  3. Turn up the heat in the house and have a luau. Put on shorts or swimsuits. Spread out beach towels. Make smoothies and eat fresh fruit. Have a hula contest.
  4. Eat supper on the floor of the living room. Spread a blanket and have a picnic. For added fun, make pretend bugs-flies, ants, bees, and mosquitos -and spread them around the room.
  5. Go on a scavenger hunt at a mall. Everyone writes down 10 items to find. Work together to find as many as possible within a time limit. Take goofy pictures with your phone.
  6. Have a tailgate party in your driveway. Pull out the grill. Put on the mittens and hats. Invite the neighbors. If nothing else, it will give the neighborhood something to talk about.
  7. Hold a boot camp for a day. Make obstacle courses, do exercises, go on adventures in the snow, build a snow fort, paint camouflage on faces, wear tans/greens and sleep in a tent (inside).
  8. Roll all the socks in the house into balls. Have an all out- no holds barred-sock war. (For added fun place socks on top of ceiling fans and turn them on full force.)
  9. Teach the kids economics. Each one does extra jobs around the home for money. Go to the dollar store and buy something with it. But first, teach them to give 10% to church/charity and to save 10%. Make a bank with 3 jars: spend, give, save.

10. When all else fails. . . find the nearest Sonic, put the kids in the car and drive to it no matter how far away it is. Preferably at Happy Hour. Order a Cherry Limeade. Or whatever. Sip it and dream about summer. Eventually the snow has to melt. Right?

Five Ways to Help Preschoolers Deal with Fear At Night

15 Oct

1. Learn the Bible verse “When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.” Psalm 56:3   Repeat it each day. Pray at night having your child repeat after you: Jesus, When I am afraid, I will trust you. Amen.
2. Read Llama, llama Red Pajama by Anna Dewdney. The llama in this book epitomizes the fear a child feels at night. The book will help preschoolers put into words what they feel.

I wish this book was around when my kids were preschoolers. The emotions the llama feel are so spot on. I love the sequence of events that take place as the little llama’s fear increases.

3. Make a “I’m not alone” pillowcase together. Start off with an inexpensive plain white or tan pillowcase. Decorate it using permanent markers or fabric paint. Draw pictures of the family on the pillowcase or anything that helps the preschooler feel calm. Write the verse Psalm 56:3 on the pillowcase and point to the verse each night to remind the child.

4. Read from a Bible Story book about Jesus calming the storm at night (Mark 4:35-40.)  Act out the story with your child. Draw a picture of the storm and Jesus in the boat with the disciples. Put the picture in the child’s room as a reminder that Jesus protected the disciples during the storm and calmed the wind and the waves.

5. During the day, role play going to bed. Act out different situations and how to handle them when the child is scared.
Above all, be patient. This won’t last forever. It might seem like it will, but it won’t. Hugs, verbal reassurances and listening to the child’s concerns will go a long way in helping them deal with fear.
And truthfully. . . most of my kids went through a period of time where we had a sleeping bag in our room on the floor. They would crawl in when they needed reassurance. This period never lasted long and kept us from some sleepless nights.