Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Feeling hot, hot, hot: Enjoying the great indoors

I am not normally the type of parent who says to their children, "Stay indoors." But high heat and humidity can be a recipe for disaster.

As I write this post, I'm sitting in a hotel in St. Louis, where the forecasted temperature is 96 - with a projected heat index of 110. Nevermind that I usually begin wilting when the temperatures approach 90.

So what can you do when the kids when the weathermen and health professionals profess that it's a good day to stay inside to avoid heat illnesses?

At the City Museum in St. Louis
Here are some of the ways we survive extreme temps and inject a little fun into our days:

  1. Family game day. I think we all have board games that too often collect dust; hot-weather days are a great opportunity to turn on a fan, pop some popcorn, drink some lemonade and have some fun interactions and memories. I don't care if your child is too young according to the rules. Let them take part on their terms - even if it's just being on your team and picking up the cards.
  2. Hit the museums. I know, many museums may charge $10, $20 or more, and for a larger family that quickly adds up. But when the temperature rises, consider enjoying the air conditioning and learning something new at a local museum. Find the quirky free-admission ones too for a new experience. 
  3. Hold a sprinkler party in the evening. Once the temperature cools somewhat, toss the kids outside in the sprinkler to burn off some energy and cool off.
  4. Keep a boredom binder on hand. What? Nothing to do? There's math worksheets, Cars and Greek mythology worksheets, Girl Scout badge activities and more at their fingertips.
  5. Inject a little mystery. We've been having "Super Surprise Saturdays" lately. The surprise may be as simple as getting ice cream, attending a summer library program or seeing a free movie preview but it's the anticipation that makes a difference.
  6. Embrace book day. Take a morning (or afternoon) to lounge in your pjs with your favorite book. That goes for mom and ad too.
  7. Have the kids cook. Let them prepare sandwiches, fruit salads, fruit soups or other meals that don't require long time in front of the stove or with the oven on. Even better, let them choose what they're cooking!
  8. Embrace the popsicle. Whether you buy them or make them, the cold, dripping goodness is a treat on a hot summer day.
  9. Have a pool in your tub. More than once I've run cool water in our bath and let the kids "swim" in it in their swimsuits.
  10. Dig out those art supplies and leftover school supplies. Tell them they aren't allowed to watch TV or play a game until they've created something.
  11. Build a fort, even if it means tearing up your couch cushions.
What are your favorite ways to entertain your kids during hot summer days (and nights?) Leave a comment below or link up your post in our #summerfamilyfunparty linky.


Linda said...

Love your list Robbie! I'm going to combine #11 and #5 during our next heat wave - the kids will have a ball!

Alice Reed said...

What fun tips to beat the heat with the kids! We love to have an evening sprinkler party. The kids also like swimming in the tub. I include plenty of bubble with rubber ducks and other toys to keep them entertained and cool.