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  • Writer's picturejessica wright

Craft the (rainy) Day Away

Never would I have thought I would write a blog on things to do in the snow. So, I won’t. Ha! However, I will say that this past week in Mississippi has been one for the books. We’ve sledded (via kayak), made snow cream, blew up a snow volcano, built a snowman, shoveled snow, hiked through the snow. At this point, it feels like if you name it we’ve done it.


One good thing about the snow, you can still play outside and have a good time. However, I am totally fine with seeing it move on and giving us our green grass and impending spring weather. BUT... with spring also comes rain. And while April showers bring May flowers and all that, driving rain storms aren't quite as easy to get out in to play the day away.


So with this blog post, I hope to give you some ideas on ways to bring the outside in for a good rainy day. My kids collect ALL THE THINGS whenever go outside... rocks, acorns, pine cones, leaves, sticks. ALL. OF. IT! I feel like it’s only matter of time before I find worms and slugs in their pockets, too. Thankfully though, everything we gather so far does not hail from the animal kingdom.


So we decided to put all those collections to good use.

 

Rock Painting


I keep a stash of acrylic paints for these sorts of days so we pulled out the rocks and the paints and got artistic with our rock collection. You can also buy the rock painting kits at Walmart and or amazon if you don’t have any flat smooth rocks or paint to get you going.


 

Pinecone Bird Feeders


We have two big pine trees within 50ft of our back door which makes for lots of pinecones for my little explorers to collect (and my dog to eat... I don’t really understand him but our relationship is a work in progress).


So we grabbed some peanut butter, birdseed, butcher’s twine, and a bucket full of the pine cones.


This really is one of the easiest crafts out there, and I love it because it’s an eco-friendly way to feed our feathered friends. We just used popsicle sticks to coat up the pine cones in peanut butter, rolled them around in birdseed, and hung them on our limbs with some butcher’s twine.



It made for quite the show in the snow as all the birds hung out right outside our window filling up on our creations.




One other fun tip...save your bacon fat and use it to make suet for birds. We fried bacon for breakfast and saved the grease to use as a binder to make a suet bird food block. We just dropped it on top of our frozen up bird bath during this winter storm and watched the birds have a field day. Another eco-friendly bird feeding option and a great use for that leftover bacon grease.

 

Organic Sprouts Terrarium


Admittedly, this was 100% a purchased item and not something we foraged, but it made for the perfect rainy day craft and was such a good teaching tool for our kids to learn about things that go underground, on land, and in the sky. We purchased this terrarium kit, and the kids took turns filling it up with sand, soil, and seeds and placed stickers on each layer to show what belongs on each one (or in the case of my 3 year old we just went rogue... anything goes in his world). And a few days later, we got to enjoy some organic sprouted greens on our eggs for breakfast.


 

Painted Acorn Picture Frame


My kids looooove to collect acorns from our neighbor’s oak tree (yet another thing my dog randomly eats. I promise we feed him). I’ve wondered forever about what the heck we are going to do with all these acorns, because my daughter Lucy will literally be devastated if she finds them in the trash. Any other Moms have kids who find things in the trash after you try to sneak toss them like you’re hiding evidence from a police officer?


Well finally an idea dawned on me so once again we pulled out those handy acrylic paints. My kids got busy painting them any and all colors that inspired them. I also had a blank picture frame I literally got to paint for a rainy day. So we let the acorns dry and hot glued them to the frame for a cute and earthy creation. My kids were proud and loved the activity and so did I!


I love that my kids appreciate nature and get excited about all of their finds, and I never want to quell that spirit. However, they are also part hoarder so figuring out what to do with all the stuff afterward can be a challenge. So figuring out a way to repurpose their finds and also let their little artistry flags fly on a rainy day makes for happy kids and a happy Mom and Dad.

What are some of your favorite rainy day crafts and ways you like to bring outside in?



 

And just in case you've never seen Mississippi kids in the snow...











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