Affordable Snow Day Fun


With yet another wicked winter storm readying to slam into several states from New Mexico to Illinois, millions of parents are gearing up for a snow day.  For kids, having a day off from school is a dream come true, but for many moms and dads the unexpected break is a true nightmare, especially if said children turn restless and cabin fever strikes.

To preserve your sanity as Old Man Winter blasts into your neck of the woods, consider the following fun and affordable projects and games designed to keep your kids busy and out of trouble:

DIY Decorative Pencils


  • Standard No.2 pencils
  • Paint brush
  • Scissors
  • White craft glue diluted with a little water
  • Tissue paper in a variety of colors
  • A brick of Oasis floral foam


  1. Use one of the pencils to poke several holes in the brick of floral foam.
  2. Cut the tissue paper into one-inch squares.
  3. Liberally brush the glue and water mixture over the pencils, save for the tip and eraser, and then cover them with the tissue paper.  Overlap the tissue paper squares to show off the different colors.
  4. When the entire pencil is covered with tissue paper, add a finishing coat of the glue mixture to seal the squares.
  5. Place the decorated pencils into the floral foam brick, eraser side down.
  6. Allow the pencils to dry completely before using them.

Indoor Scavenger Hunt

A scavenger hunt is a fun way to keep kids entertained.  The goal is to have children search around for a series of items.  As they find each object they check it off their list.  The first person to locate all of the items is the winner.  One of the perks of scavenger hunts is they can be modified for a wide range of ages.  For example, if the players are older, consider creating word scramble or word search clues.  Players are given a list of items in which the words are scrambled, and then they must unscramble the words before they can begin searching for the items.  This version is more challenging than one designed for children who are too young to read.  When working with very young kids, simply use pictures of specific items and place them on a sheet of paper for the children to find.

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Michele Cheplic

About Michele Cheplic

Michele Cheplic was born and raised in Hilo, Hawaii, but now lives in Wisconsin. Michele graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in Journalism. She spent the next ten years as a television anchor and reporter at various stations throughout the country (from the CBS affiliate in Honolulu to the NBC affiliate in Green Bay). She has won numerous honors including an Emmy Award and multiple Edward R. Murrow awards honoring outstanding achievements in broadcast journalism. In addition, she has received awards from the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association for her reports on air travel and the Wisconsin Education Association Council for her stories on education. Michele has since left television to concentrate on being a mom and freelance writer.