We’re trapped inside for the blizzard with our 16 month old daughter. This is actually not a big deal for us because, regardless of the season, our entire life is blizzard entrapment: I stay at home with our 16-month-old daughter, my husband works full-time out of our bedroom (not a webcam girl), and our dog Banjo logs 17+ hours of sleep on the bed underneath a blanket. That’s four meaty, exhausted bodies tucked away in our small apartment 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The days are long, there’s always some massive quantity of food to prepare, trips to the grocery store are a disaster, there’s always debate over who has to take the dog for a walk, and by the time the adults are finally free to explore the world beyond, they just don’t wanna.
But this time there’s snow on the ground, so I make French Toast, eggs, coffee, aaaand hot chocolate, as opposed to our usual breakfast of French Toast, eggs, and coffee. Our daughter is too young to fully enjoy romping in the snow, which is good, because her mother was too busy reading horror clickbaits about how not to die while shoveling snow to buy her some snowpants. Luckily we had trashbags and duct tape to the rescue:
16 months is tough. She’s smart enough to know when an activity is boring, but not bright enough to sit quietly and play with crayons or tickle mommy’s back with any kind of attention on her shoulders or lower back. Since playing outside is out of the question, here are some things we do to keep her busy:
- A walk down our apartment building’s hallways. She plays with snowy boots that our neighbors have left outside their doors to dry. I generally discourage this behavior, because it could lead to something dangerous: casual interaction with our neighbors, who may or may not remember our screamy sleep training days of yore.
- Zoning out on our phones while the baby does something else.
- Pile blankets on the dog.
- Pile blankets on Mommy while she zones out on her phone.
- Mommy playing “pretend sprained ankle” so Daddy can deal with the baby.
- Diaper changing wars
- Going to the building’s gym to play with the bouncy balls
- YouTube videos. She likes the ones with music. Nate and I have watched these ones so much I had to take a deeper dive and assess the remarkable career of Usher.
Here’s to a dethawed playground in the upcoming weeks!