Snowy BackyardIt’s a snow day here, and even though my 13-year-old son is old enough to pretty much amuse himself, I still think fondly of those times when I had to come up with entertainment ideas. I still sometimes try them out on him, because one never knows. Here are some faves.

Create an indoor mini golf course. Use soup cans on their sides for the holes. Ping pong balls and yardsticks or mops work well for balls and clubs, if you don’t have a plastic kiddie golf set. Tape together some paper towel rolls if you want something really light.
Hold a paper airplane contest. Longest distance? Most loops? Best decorated? Have at.
Decorate a box for your pet. Most cats in particular love to sit in boxes. Color and/or cut one to look like a fire truck, castle, boat, or other object, and your pet will be stylin’. (Works for stuffed pets, too.)
Throw a bedsheet over the table. A classic that never gets old. Try a colored sheet for an eerie effect, or stick with the traditional white. If you have a spare, let your kids draw on it with markers—stones for a castle, trees for a forest lair, etc.
Bake something. Pretty much anything will do here, but here’s my go-to chocolate cake recipe if you need ideas. It’s always good, too, to have a vegan cake recipe around, even if you’re not vegan, because sometimes snow days leave us stuck without enough eggs or butter.
If you don’t want to go the sweet route, dips and salsas are also fun and easy recipes to put together with the kids. I’m fond of homemade French Onion Dip:
Finely chop one large onion, and saute in a little olive oil until lightly brown, with some pieces just starting to darken further. Mix into two cups sour cream or Greek yogurt, along with two teaspoons sugar and one teaspoon salt. Adjust seasonings to taste. Refrigerate for at least an hour for best results, to let flavors blend.
Play in the snow. Because that’s the essence of a snow day, really. The wind is still whipping things off our roof at the moment, so we haven’t gone outside quite yet, but we’ll definitely do so later. Not sure if we’ll go find a sledding hill or just try to dig caves into the pile that the plow left at the end of our driveway. If nothing else, getting outside feels like an excuse for hot chocolate later.
Have your own ideas? Leave a comment!