The secret to sanity on yet another snow day

     (Courtesy of Jen Bradley)

    (Courtesy of Jen Bradley)

    I’m sure you’re not surprised to know that we’ve had exactly 4,322 snow days this school year. Or maybe you’re correcting my math, arguing that it’s really 4,323. I guess it depends on which school your kids go to.

    I’ll freely admit that I really do like having everyone home. Snow days make me fantasize about homeschooling — how we’d have blissfully relaxing mornings and how we’d accomplish so much more.

    But somewhere around 11 a.m., my utopia gets interrupted by intermittent screams. These screams are not eureka moments my children have because they’ve finally figured out how to whittle their own toys out of backyard sticks. They’re more like screams of, let’s call it… togetherness.

    This winter, we’ve had a LOT of togetherness. And as I said above, I really enjoy it. But the off-again, on-again relationship we now have with school is wearing us all down.

    I love change. I even thrive on it. But right now, I’m yearning for consistency. Imagine a world in where the kids go to school Monday through Friday, week after week. It could happen.

    But until then, how do we stay relatively sane?

    Lots of electronics.

    You thought I was going to share whittling secrets, didn’t you? Maybe you’re laughing because you remember our family meeting about limiting screen time (ahem, MINECRAFT). 

    Before we reached 100 consecutive snow days, we really were trying to stay true to our electronics agreement. Even now, we bake cookies, create rainbow slime, play with play-doh, draw, have board game marathons, take play baths, have dance parties, build forts, have snowball fights, go sledding, make hot cocoa, cook casseroles, and more.

    But after all of those things are finished, there are still 23 more hours left in the day. We’re stuck inside, and somewhere around the ice storm (or maybe it was the snowstorm before the ice storm?), we relaxed. A lot.

    And you know what? It’s OK. There’s a lot of great technology out there. And it’s fun. The kids enjoy doing it together, and we enjoy the scream-free breaks. There’s plenty of learning to be had… or not. Because that’s not the point.

    The point is, we’ve learned that it’s just as important to let go of the rules as it is to create them.

    So what’s your secret to surviving snow days? Does it include TV? An Xbox? Wii? iPad? YouTube? Maybe just a little bit? It’s OK. I won’t tell if you don’t.

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