We spent G-Girl’s last Snow Day building snow forts and snowmen in our dining room. The snow outside looks lovely shinning in the sunlight, but I’m not letting my kids outside to play on a day when they warn you can get frostbite in under five minutes. So instead, we brought the snow play inside.
I gave them cornstarch based packing peanuts. The kind that are super eco-friendly and designed to dissolve in water. The idea came to me because of an art kit that G-Girl had last year, something called Stikits, which was basically a coloured version of cornstarch based packing peanuts. You get them damp, they dissolve just enough that they stick together. Except these ones, which I had on hand from some blog related shipment or other, were of course all white. So we called them snow. We built igloos and snow sculptures galore. We giggled and joked about the fact that we were building things out of snow in the dining room.
I will admit, these were a tiny bit inferior to the real Stikits. Aside from only coming in one shade, snow white, they also dissolve easier. Get then too wet and you’ve got a gloppy very sticky mess on your hands. But they had the advantage of being free. Or even if I had gone out and bought a mess of biodegradable packing peanuts, it would have ended up much, much cheaper then the equivalent amount of Stikits.
I gave the kids each a small plastic dish with a damp sponge sitting in it, and a big bin full of “snow peanuts” to build with. You just take one of the packing peanuts and dab it onto the sponge to get it damp, and then you stick it up against another peanut and blamo, the two are now stuck together. It’s also easy to pinch and squeeze to mold shapes.
It was a bit messy but totally worth it, as this kept my girls happily occupied for at least three hours. Yes, seriously, three hours. Overall, the things my kids made looked mostly like abstract white blobs of nothing to me, but the end result was irrelevant. It was the fun time spent sticking wee bits of “snow” together that mattered. And when we were done we cuddled and had hot chocolate with marshmallows in, for the perfect end to a “snow play” day.