Many cities have banned tobogganing on public property—a once favourite family pastime, especially in Canada—and I still cannot get my head around it. I’m sure there are plenty of parents out there who agree, and find it just as unfathomable. No one wants their kids to get hurt, but it happens; it’s a part of being a child. You can’t helicopter parent your kid just because they scraped their knee.
Kids fall off their bikes, skin their elbows, trip and fall and so forth. I have an abundance of bodily scars to show this, and I look at them fondly: “Remember when…?”
And yes, I’m aware of the dangers of activities like tobogganing, but, there are many dangers that come with MANY, if not ALL, activities kids (and adults) do. It doesn’t necessarily make sense to ban them altogether because of one very unfortunate freak accident. Do we cut down all the trees because one kid fell while climbing? Do we ban bikes? (Apparently even street hockey has been banned in some areas because drivers are incapable of being careful). Do we take down all playgrounds? Theme parks? Skating rinks? The list could go on and on.
Anyways, since tobboganning is out this winter in many areas, and some parents might be scratching their heads trying to come up with sh*t to keep their kids occupied and out of the house for a couple hours, I’ve put together a list of activities you can do with (or without) your kids.
1. Build a snowman! Grab the classic carrot, stones, sticks and scarf to make your very own Frosty.
2. Go skating. Lace up and hit the rink!
3. Tour the decorated houses in your neighborhood. Scout the houses for the craziest Christmas lights!
4. Go snowshoeing or hiking. It’s actually quite the workout in the snow! Definitely will tire the kiddies (and you) out.
5. Ice fishing! Pack some hot cocoa, maybe add a little Baileys for the moms and dads, and get ready to camp out!
6. Adventure out on the ski & snowboard hills. Show the little ones a good time by hitting the slopes.
7. Have a backyard bonfire. It’s not just for summertime! Roast some marshmellows, sip some warm apple cider and cozy up under a blanket while you admire the stars in the winter sky.
P.S. After the kiddies go to bed, parents can enjoy this now romantic setting together.
8. Visit a maple syrup farm. Enjoy making your own taffy in the snow!
9. Make snow angels. After a fresh snowfall, there’s nothing more tempting than jumping into that new pile of snow.
10. Play some ice hockey. At least this isn’t banned. Especially here in Canada.
11. Head on out to a local winter festival. They are sure to be jam-packed with activities. If you’re in Canada, check these ones out.
12. Do a good deed. Teach the youngins the importance of helping others by doing things such as volunteering to walk dogs at an animal shelter or shovelling a neighbor’s driveway.
13. Take a ride on a horse-drawn sleigh. While it is a common activity at festivals, many farms also offer it.
14. Play a game of outdoor bowling! Freeze coloured water inside balloons and once frozen, remove balloons and voila! Coloured ice-bowling balls!
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