Winter isn’t for everyone — the ice, the wind, the freezing temperatures are not easy to bear, but there’s a reason there are so many songs about snow. It’s fun and necessary for many creative, enticing outdoor activities. Here are five fun snow activities:
- Try snowshoeing or cross-country skiing. There is something intensely sacred about spending the day outside tromping or gliding through nature. Being in nature, versus near nature, like on a path or in the car on the road, brings immediacy to the experience. Animals might linger a second longer, the wind will whistle through the trees more clearly, and the air will hold a crispness that cannot be experienced any other way in the winter. Plus, both activities are excellent forms of exercise that don’t feel like exercise. Win-win!
- Build a snowman, woman, family or animal. Children love to build snowmen, and there’s a very easy explanation for this. It’s fun! Recall the days of childhood where the snow was the right mixture of density and wetness — perfect snowball weather. That’s the time to gather a few household items — a carrot for the nose; coal (who has coal? try charcoal), big buttons, small tin can lids — whatever you can find that will work for eyes. A scarf, a hat, a pair of mittens or gloves, and something for the mouth — red vines, more buttons, candies — and you have the fixings for the ideal snowperson. Get to work. That perfect snow doesn’t last long! Make a family or neighborhood competition out of it — the best figure wins a simple prize, or maybe even just bragging rights.
- Go sledding. The only difficult thing about sledding is making sure you are dressed warmly enough to stay dry until you want to quit because that could take a long time. There is almost no rush as exhilarating as whooshing down a hill on a plastic doughnut, an inner tube, or a wooden runner sled. Trying to go farther than your friends, making it beyond your last point, and simply staying on make sledding fun for all ages. Be sure to wear lots of layers for this activity because by the time you have climbed the hill a dozen times, you will be warm. After you slow your pace a bit, you will get chilled again, so layer up.
- Find a snow-plowed “mountain.” College campuses, church parking lots and park pathways tend to have massive snow piles where the snowplow has dumped all the snow from the area. It’s the perfect place to climb, create secret caverns, and spend an afternoon imagining that you are off on some exotic mountain range, climbing the heights and dropping to depths. Bring along some small garden hand shovels or collapsible car shovels for additional digging help — just be sure to keep track of them, as they can easily get lost in the piles!
- Have a good, old-fashioned snowball fight. Have you been frustrated with your mate, child, boss, mother or you name who lately? A snowball fight is the perfect way to get that aggression out without hurting anybody. In fact, everyone will think you are throwing simply for fun. They don’t need to know your true motivation! Again, wait for that perfect snow day, and then hit the back yard or some place where you can really put your pitching arm to use. Be sure that the snow is pure — no ice balls at this fight! You can gather in teams, make an arsenal, and have at it, or you can simply toss one ball at your intended victim and see what happens next. Usually, you’ll be so tired at the end that whatever irritation you were housing inside will simply disappear. For additional impact, get some snowball makers — the mold makes the perfect circle and the long arm gives you more throwing power.
Ultimately, at the end of each of these snow activities, make sure that you have good cocoa and maybe some popcorn ready to go. Rosy cheeks warm up much faster over a warm cup of hot chocolate — that’s practically a scientific fact!
Story written by Dayna Del Val, Manage my life