Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Cabin Fever Plan of Attack

Welcome to the November 2014 Carnival of Natural Parenting: Indoor Play This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama. This month our participants have shared ideas and inspiration to keep families happy and healthy while cooped up indoors.

On cold but sunny afternoons, I think some outdoor play is still awesome! We need some sunshine when / if we can snag it. Sometimes, though, you really are stuck inside. It doesn't take too long for that to get old real quick, especially in smaller shared spaces. I have a couple of plans of attack up my sleeve for days when we're getting sick of each other.

First, toy and game rotation. I keep some toys back. I generally rotate bins close to the first of each month, but sometimes I'll whip out something "new" when we're driving each other crazy. Sometimes I inspire the kids to play with an old toy in a new way. Or we check out the games closet. We don't get stuff out of there nearly often enough!

The second big thing we do is allow a bit of craziness indoors. This isn't limited to being stuck inside, but I think it helps during those times. I let my kids do somersaults on the couch or climb all the way up the back of it and drop back down. They run across our small living room and crash into the couch. They might even be allowed to jump on my bed! <gasp> Being able to use up some of their energy in a rambunctious way just seems like a logical fix.

Every once in a while, we also just sit and search for images of whatever Sasha wants to see. Its usually different types of animals. I'll search and then we'll scroll through several pages of images before moving on to a new one.

Carnival of Natural Parenting -- Hobo Mama and Code Name: MamaVisit Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama to find out how you can participate in the next Carnival of Natural Parenting!
Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:

(This list will be updated by afternoon August 12 with all the carnival links.)

  • Congestion Be Gone Shower Vapor Discs — Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama shares a fun way to beat the indoor blues while creating something useful at the same time! Come learn how Jennifer and her daughter created congestion relief discs so you too can get creative in the kitchen. It makes a fun science experiment too!
  • Indoor Fun: Dads and Moms Who Listen Prevent Cabin Fever — Laurie Hollman Ph.D. at Parental Intelligence reminds us that even with all the best planning for indoor fun, it's helpful to have creative tips that forestall daytime upsets and build parent-child bonds.
  • Outside? What's that?: 13 Boredom Busters for 13 Weeks of Winter — Joining us from rural Ontario, where she is no stranger to massive amounts of snow and frigid temperatures, Leslie at Eat Your Peas shares 13 Boredom Busters to get you through the 13 weeks of winter.
  • Where to get the wiggles out in bad weather — Lauren at Hobo Mama offers indoor places to escape to when kids need to run and shout away from the rain and snow.


  1. Crashing into the couch - yep, my kids do that on indoor days ;) What I need is an indoor trampoline to really get their energy out!

  2. I totally agree that when you've no choice but to stay in, the rules of 'indoors' have to change. My husband kindly took both our sets of keys to work today, so being stuck in house, what have we been doing? Making cardboard box-and-patchwork-quilt dens that fill the lounge and stuffing them with cushions off the sofa. It's gotta be done!

  3. Toy and game rotation. Yep, such a good idea that one - and bouncing around the place, yep, as PeelingClementines says, "it's gotta be done!" Thank you for sharing your ideas :-)

  4. I really need to get better at intentional toy rotation! We do put a lot of toys away at any given time, and whenever we get anything "new" out, the kids go wild for it. Works like a charm!

  5. I need a good toy rotation too! I always say I'll do it but then I just give them away so I can clear some space for the more rambunctious play. Hmmm? I gotta work on that.
    Love the idea of letting the indoor rules go to the wayside so fun can be had! Thanks for sharing.

  6. I have a "cozy coupe", a "hippity hop" and a trike that all come inside on days when we can't go out. The kids think it is great to get to ride inside! Alex's new balance bike has already had a couple of rides in the house...even though the weather wasn't bad...he just wanted to. And Nana said "sure"!

  7. Isn't Google Image Search great? I've been known to do that too. I also have to admit that I've taken to YouTube occasionally to keep my little guy entertained for a short while. He loves watching videos of cats (who doesn't?!?) and trains and the trolley system here in San Diego.


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