I’ve always loved snow and the way it blankets the world in white. Yes, it’s cold. Yes, it’s inconvenient. But it’s also beautiful and it slows life down. Which I truly think is a gift from God. Sometimes it’s just better to slow right down and drink deep of beauty.
I’m also a lover of traditions. I have a nostalgic bone a mile wide and used to write pages in my journals of all the memories I wanted to establish in my home.
There are the regular ones about birthdays and Christmas and Easter Sunday morning. And then there are the crazy-fun ones that take place on the first morning you wake up and run to the window and see the ground has magically been turned white.
So without further ado, here are ideas for 25 traditions that will make life more fun!
1. Throw on your coat, run outside and have a snowball fight.
It’ll probably only last about 30 seconds before everyone is freezing but it’s a great excuse to have hot chocolate for breakfast. Mmmhmm… (and yes, there is such a thing as “Healthy Hot Chocolate”.)
2. Make a “Snow Cake”.
One of my favorite traditions, that I’ve done with all the nieces and nephews at some point, is to make snow cake. (I use this recipe but you can use any favorite cake recipe. Decrease the liquid by about a quarter cup and add a cup of SNOW.) They giggle like crazy when I send them outside with a cup measure. “Make sure it’s clean snow!” I yell and their eyes twinkle.
I usually frost it with White Mountain Frosting and we eat it for lunch. Before our regular food because we’re just so excited we can’t wait until afterward.
3. Go make a snow angel. And take a picture.
Every child should know how to make a snow angel. And if you don’t have babies? Drag your husband outside with you to make them. I guarantee you’ll be laughing by the end. I mean, seriously. Is there anything quite as hilarious as flopping yourself down in the snow and flapping your arms and legs about? I didn’t think so.
4. Play Candyland.
I don’t know why. Just believe me, the kids will love it. Pull it out, set it up on the living room floor and play. When you draw the ice cream cone, jump up and down and give everyone hugs. When you draw the gingerbread man, sing “You can’t catch me I’m the gingerbread man!” as you race across the board to the beginning. They’ll all be in stitches, I promise.
As the kids get older you might substitute Monopoly. If you don’t have kids, pull out boggle or scrabble. Still be dramatic. It adds a bit of excitement to the game.
5. Make Snow Ice Cream.
It’s as easy as pudding-pie, so you can’t use “I don’t know how.” as an excuse. Send the kids out with bowls after supper and tell them to fill up with the cleanest snow they can find. When they come back inside, drizzle milk and maple syrup over the snow, mix it up and hand them a spoon.
It’s happiness in a bowl, I tell you. Happiness in a bowl.
7. Make donuts.
Yes. Sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar. And you don’t even have to fry them if you don’t want to. Just bake them up.
8. Cut paper snowflakes.
The easiest way is to use coffee filters.
9. Make winter soup.
There is just something about soup on snowy days.
10. Go visit Grandma (or a special aunt or cousin or friend).
Bundling up to go visit a relative or friend on a snow day is SO fun. Stop for a steaming cup of coffee on the way, or maybe a carton of ice cream to share.
11. Build a snowman.
Not enough snow for a regular one? Make mini ones! My husband is the best at leaving mini snowmen all around town after the first snow. It’s the cutest.
12. Catch snowflakes!
All you need is black paper and a magnify glass and you’re all set to discover the beauty of snowflakes. And you might want to order your own copy of Snowflake Bentley, a delightful story of a man who was determined to photograph snowflakes!
13. Set up your train set.
Trains aren’t just for Christmas! Creating a little village for your trainset may be *just* the thing your family needs for cold evenings. Pinterest is a perfect place to get ideas!
15. Make “Snowy Day” pictures.
You can do them this way. Or just have the kids to draw a winter scene with glue, sprinkle sugar all over it, let it dry and hang up! It’ll be delightful either way.
16. Make Wax-on-Snow.
This is a Northern New York tradition. But you should start it, even if you don’t live up here. Just think: chewy maple syrup. It’s life-changing.
17. Play Shape-Pictionary in the snow.
Take turns using your feet to make extra-large shapes in the snow. The one with the most correct guesses gets the first cup of hot chocolate when you get inside.
19. Sing “Let it Snow”.
Need the lyrics?
20. Make popcorn balls!
Or, if you don’t feel like getting your hands dirty, just a big bowl of popcorn with lots of melted butter will do.
21. Do a macro photo-shoot.
Snowflakes are incredible. Go ahead and spend some time taking photos of them.
22. Make snowflake cookies.
Use your favorite rolled cookie dough recipe, cut them in shapes of snowflakes, and decorate away!
23. Write a “snow-story” with the kids.
Have them illustrate it by drawing with a white crayon on black paper.
p.s. you don’t have to be a writer. It can be simple-as-pudding-pie. “One night, while we all slept, snow came down. It covered the grass. It covered the trees. It covered the car and the house and the garden. All white and bright and clean. The End.” Just write it out, staple it all together and let them color away.
24. Make marshmallow snowmen.
Come on, they’re the cutest thing ever. You know you want to.
25. Make big mugs of Snow Tea.
Gather several large containers of snow and melt them slowly in a pot. Once the water is close to boiling, add a tea bag and a pinch of cinnamon. Turn off the burner and let it steep for 3-5 minutes. Add honey and milk and enjoy.