Day 6: Let it Snow! Let it Snow! Let it Snow!

I grew up in Louisiana. We spent most Christmas seasons wearing shorts and running with barefeet across green grass. Maybe that’s why I love anything that has to do with snow…especially the loveable snowmen that seemed as unreal to me as, well, Santa! Santa was visible, you know the department store men with fake beards and genuine bellies, but a real snowman was a rare miracle that came only when the most significant wish came true…a little girl’s hope for snow to fall in south Louisiana! (It happened not once, but twice!)

Later, when I was a young mother living in the North Pole (aka Peoria, Illinois – the coldest place on earth!), we built an 8-foot-tall snowman in our front yard. He stayed there from Thanksgiving until Easter, and we changed his clothes throughout the seasons. His name was Friendly, and he was quite a special member of our family.

Today, after many snow-filled years in Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Colorado, I’m back in the south, living in Oxford, Mississippi. We do get a few decent snowfalls each year, but with these fun ideas, we’ll be enjoying snowmen even on our green grass days. Enjoy!

For starters, and for you ambitions crafters who want some lifelong keepsake ornaments in your collection, take a look at Amy Powers’ lovely snowmen. These have such a vintage feel, they remind me of my grandmother’s homemade ornaments. This would be a fabulous activity for those of you with older kids, especially tweens and teens, who have outgrown some of the simpler Christmas crafts. You can find step-by-step instructions along with photos to guide you by visiting the incredible blogsite: holidaywithmatthewmead.com

Okay, now let’s try this little snowman seat cover for the younger kids. I made one of these for my preschool classroom one year and chose a different child each day to sit in the “Snowman’s Lap.” But I also love the idea of using a pillowcase and keeping this as a holiday sham on a toddler’s bed. You can find templates and detailed directions for this particular pattern at Family Fun’s website.

I absolutely LOVE these adorable snowladies I found hanging out at curlybirds.blogspot.com Created by three-year-old crafters, these are such a fun project for the creative kids in your family. Find photos and specific instructions by visiting the curly birds site.

 
 
 
Now for those of you with less time or ambition for crafting. Here’s something super simple. Three circles traced on a large sheet of cardstock; glue; cotton balls. Voila! Add googly eyes and decorate with pieces of felt and you’ve got a happy new friend. I encourage you not to stick to this image. Add a hat, scarf, or other accessories and have fun! You can also staple together two or three paper plates (smallest to largest) and decorate as desired.
 
 
 

image from notimeforflashcards.com

Or, if the thought of glue and cotton balls makes you nervous…skip the glue and just let your little one cover dots with mini-marshmallows.

Either way, use these activities to help children learn to count. You can also teach basic concepts like adding (“What if we add another one here. now how many do we have?”) and subtracting (“Now if I eat one marshmallows, how many do we have left?”)
 
 
 
 
Finally…oh what fun this will be…end the day by serving snowman milkshakes made with your favorite flavors, whipped cream, and candy embellishments. If you’re worried about sugar overload, leave time to go outside and build snow sculptures (or run barefooted and climb trees…choose your passion!)
 
Oh…I just have way too many more fun snowman ideas to share…so stay tuned. More to come! (Subscribe to Julie’s Journal for automatic email updates and be sure not to miss daily ideas to keep your family laughing your way through the holidays).
 

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