WHY does January always seem to drag on? Every year, it never fails. January seems like a year long. We had a pretty good month, but I’m ready to move on. I’m over you, January.
We managed to stay pretty busy for a winter month even though we hardly go anywhere. We’ve had lots of home projects, activities, and goals to keep us busy and keep our sanity in tact! Here is a recap of our LONG January…
1,000 Hours Outside Challenge
We heard of this challenge from a friend, and knew it was right up our alley. So as a family, we have a goal to spend 1,000 hours outside this year. Living in Indiana, I knew the winter months would be a challenge, but I also knew that we should be able to make up for it in the other seasons. Overall, we had a really cold January. But if the temperature was around 25 degrees or higher, we would try to spend at least a little time outside here and there.
We’ve had to get creative when it’s cold and the kids didn’t really want to venture outside. So we’ve done a few special walks, like an apple cider walk and a hot cocoa walk!
Brody has been the biggest champ about this so far. He loves being outside, even when it’s cold, raining, you name it. He loves bundling up and playing outside or going on walks with me when the kids are at school.
It took a little while, but we finally got a few days of snow. They were minimal, but the kids were still excited!
When it snowed around an inch or two, we spent the evening after school outside as a family.
The kids have been dying to try out their new sleds and our sledding hill on the side of our house. Even Brody loved it! And like last year, Ryan strapped the sled to his Jeep and pulled the big kids around the open lots.
We spent an entire weekend outside playing in the snow…and got some good hours into our goal!
And of course every time we come inside from snow play, the kids have hot cocoa!
My Newest Hobby (and obsession!)
For Christmas, Ryan got me a Cricut Maker 3. I’ve always wanted one, but never wanted to buy it for myself. After watching hours of videos learning how to use it, I’ve finally got the hang of it and have had so much fun creating projects!
I started out with a few vinyl projects. I made myself a mug, and I personalized this baseball water bottle for my nephew’s birthday.
Next, I learned how to do iron-on projects. I made shirts for everyone in the family!
Our family has been OBSESSED with the new Disney movie, Encanto. Even Brody loves it, and always wants to watch it or listen to the amazing music. He calls it “No No,” from the song, “We Don’t Talk About Bruno.” I made Brody his own “No No” shirt, and made myself a shirt to channel my inner Luisa!
My nephew Briggs, turned 10 this month! He was having a birthday party with some of his buddies, and they were going to play Minute to Win It games and needed blind folds, so I made some for all his friends. We did purple because it is their school colors. I had 2 bandanas left, so I made headbands for my nieces!
I heard about this event from a friend, and knew we needed to check it out. It was called “Freezefest,” and you could walk around and look at really neat ice sculptures. The kids loved it!
100th Day of School
Kinsie and Brax both celebrated their 100th day of school this month. Neither of their schools asked them to make special shirts, but my kids are something extra so they wanted to do that anyway. Kinsie really wanted to wear the shirt she made in Kindergarten with 100 gems on it. I was surprised it still fit her!
Brax was excited for me to make him a shirt with my Cricut. His teacher and his friends loved his shirt!
Brax’s class had a “100 Museum,” where they each brought in 100 items. Last year he brought 100 dinosaurs, and he wanted to bring something different this year, so he brought 100 animals. They also each had a display with a photo of what they would look like at 100 years old, and what they would buy if they had $100. He said he wanted to buy a Dino Lego set!
Cousin Play Date
My parents and my sister’s family came over one Saturday to spend the day with us. There was still some snow on the ground so the kids all brought their snow gear and they played outside for a long time! They had a blast!
Afterwards, they came inside and they all had different snack requests, so we did them all! They had hot cocoa, snow ice cream, Gatorade snow cones (made from real snow), and cookies!
Home Projects and Activities
When it’s too cold to be outside, the kids find fun things to keep them busy inside. One night, Kinsie set up a “Fancy Restaurant” in the living room, with snacks, water, a fire, and soft music!
Kinsie loves playing teacher, and I always told her we would set up a little classroom for her sometime. The problem is, she doesn’t want her little brothers messing it all up (as they definitely would!) So I set up a small classroom area in the guest room closet. She loves it and often plays teacher with her stuffed animals in there when she needs a break from the boys.
Ryan loves doing science experiments with the kids. One of the Christmas gifts we got for the kids was an Owl Pellet dissecting kit. Science is usually more of Ryan’s thing, but I used to dissect owl pellets with my 5th graders so this brought me back to my teaching days! The kids loved it! I mean, what kid doesn’t love dissecting owl puke and finding rodent bones?
This next picture is my life summed up in a picture. Oh the life of a mom of boys!
We are always reading in this family! Brody loves picking books in his room, crawling up onto his chair and reading.
The kids got a 300 piece Encanto puzzle for Christmas. At first, both Kinsie and Brax were helping me with it, but Kinsie quickly got bored and did something else, but Brax and I kept going. We finished it within a day or so, and he loved it and wanted to do another one right away! I ordered a few more puzzles online and we kept going. A few more with 300 pieces, and one with 400 pieces. If you remember, Brax has always been my puzzle boy. He was doing 50 piece puzzles independently as a 2 year old. Now he rediscovered his love for puzzles!
Home Adventures with Bro
With the Omicron variant surging in Indiana this month, Brody and I stayed home as much as possible. The only places I take him are to drop the kids off at school, and grandparents’ houses. Luckily, he doesn’t know any different than to be home all the time. Even so, life at home with Brody is never boring!
Brody is still majorly a mama’s boy, but lately he has really loved his Daddy time. Whenever Ryan is home, Brody is all over him! He loves climbing on him and dancing with him. And it’s a nice reprieve for me to have Brody hanging on Ryan instead of me every once in a while!
That was our January. February is usually a rough month as far as winter blues and bad weather, but we are looking forward to February because we are going on our first real vacation in over 2 years! We are going to Florida for a long President’s Day weekend and we could not be more excited! Now that all of us are vaccinated (except Brody), and Omicron is starting to chill a little, I feel a little better about traveling again. I can’t wait to get my kids on the beach!!
Here is our 1 Second Everyday for January. Enjoy!