"Neither rain, nor sleet, nor snow nor gloom of night can stay these swift couriers from...," well, they don't have to cope with bored kids on rainy days underfoot. As a parent at home, you do.
Whether you're snowbound or just watching the rain pour down, it's hard to have children stuck inside the house. It seems like no time at all before they're bored with the usual games, drawing, whatever they normally do inside, and you just don't feel like dumping them in front of the TV again. It's time to pull a few tricks out of the hat.
For younger children, it's time to pull out toys they only rarely get to play with. Getting anything done around a toddler in the best of weather can be challenging, so you should have special toys available no matter the time of year. Make sure most of these are things which require minimal supervision, so you can get things done while they play.
As children get older, you have a greater range of options, and they need less direct supervision. They might enjoy the games or crafts at http://www.bubbles.org/ , http://www.paperplane.org/ or, for those interested in science (some supervision required) http://www.scitoys.com/ .
Do you have blank t-shirts and fabric paint or dye available? If you have time to keep half an eye on your kids, why not let them paint or tie-dye their t-shirts? This won't work with younger children who need more direct supervision, but if they're old enough you can turn your back for a few minutes while they're painting and not come back to a mess, it's a fun option.
If crafts and activities aren't working, why not make some rules for indoor hide and seek? Obviously, you can't have kids running wildly around the house, so modify the rules to outlaw running (make time to enforce this one) and make sure that any place you don't want kids is out of bounds. This was one of my favorite games as a kid.
Still can't get any peace and quiet to get things done? If the roads are clear in your area, it might just be time to forget what work isn't urgent, and run out to play, go to the library, just to burn off that extra energy your children have been building up while cooped up in the house. Isn't having fun with your children a big part of what being a stay at home parent is all about?
Play with me, Mommy!
It's so easy to forget to make time for playing with the kids with all the demands on your time as a parent. But playing is not the only thing you can do with your children.
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