Mind and Body: Fun family activities for winter

Researchers have identified characteristics that make for a strong family.

One trait of a strong family is spending time together.

Time together allows family members to strengthen their attachment with one another and build strong bonds of love and connection.

The best time can be spent having fun.

As we approach winter, it may be more challenging to come up with fun activities for outdoors and indoors.

Some ideas to encourage your creativity with spending time together during the upcoming cold months, gathered from Today’s Parents, include:

Do good deeds for others

Volunteer with a local human service agency, such as an animal shelter, food pantry, etc. Shovel a neighbor’s sidewalk or driveway.

Doing service for others is a wonderful way to teach our children compassion while encouraging connection with each other.

Go on a scavenger hunt

Fill a few plastic containers in your yard — or a nearby park — with clues that lead kids to the next container and so on.

Fill the last one with treats like stickers, glows sticks, healthy snacks or cool pictures of birds that winter in your neck of the woods.

Have a fort night

Make tents and forts with blankets and pillows and sleep there overnight.

Make smores in the microwave with melted chocolate and marshmallows on graham crackers.

Stay away from screens

Play games instead of playing on your phones.

Declare a ‘No Screen Day’ with no electronics allowed.

Allow each family member to pick a different game to lead.

Offer prizes to winners, such as doing chores for one another.

Cook or bake together

Create a meal or bake a cake from recipes with all family members taking part in the creation, from the selection of the menu to adding ingredients and setting the table.

Make sure everyone has a job for clean-up.

Sort and donate

Winter days make for a great time to sort through toys that are no longer played with and clothes that don’t fit for donation to a thrift shop or to the local schools.

Movie night with a meal

How fun to watch a family classic and create a meal to go with it, such as having spaghetti and meatballs to go with “Lady and the Tramp.”

Introduce kids to great classics they may never have seen to share in our memories.

Create an obstacle course

Set up an obstacle course throughout the house with pillows, boxes, jump ropes, balls and other items.

It’s a great opportunity to put our energy to use while engaging in some friendly competition filled with laughter.

Play soccer in the snow

Kick around the ball while bundled up.

Also, a great time to practice catching snowflakes on your tongue or make snow angels.

Get crafty

Make paper snowflakes and hang them from the ceiling to create a winter wonderland.

Clark County Health Department provides programs for the entire family, including WIC, HANDS, family planning, well child care/immunizations, and home health care. For more information on all of our services, please call 859/744-4482 or visit our website at www.clarkhealthdept.org. You can also “like” us on Facebook.