Every January, our family has a bit of the "post Holiday blues!" We've worked and played, wrapped gifts, made special foods, and attended special family events to celebrate Christmas and the New Year! January, especially in the Midwest, can be cold and a bit dreary. If your family needs a little "pick me up," perhaps an evening "Snowman Party" will help to lift spirits!
Begin your evening with a fun family story!
Our kids love reading Snowmen at Night by Carolyn and Mark Buehner. The story is written in rhyme and has wonderful illustrations. Have your children ever made a snowman only to find that it is somehow not quite the same the next morning? The book offers a fun glimpse into what snowmen DO at night! I've read this story to young children many times; I haven't found a child who doesn't adore it! The last page of the book offers a special treat! Can YOUR children find the hidden dinosaur picture in the story? There are more hidden pictures that are FUN and challenging to find!
INDIVIDUAL SNOWMAN PIZZAS
Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Have the children build their own "snowman pizza" by placing 3 refrigerated biscuits on top of each other on a cookie sheet. Set out pizza sauce and a variety of toppings for the children to choose from: black olive slices or raisins for the eyes, carrot shreds for the nose, sausage, pepperoni, or any veggies for the buttons, and shredded cheese. Bake the pizzas until the biscuits are browned and the cheese is melted (oven times vary, but we baked ours for 12 minutes and they were perfect!) **Regular bread slices will work too. Have the children use a round cup to cut circles out of the bread.
EASY SNOWFLAKE CRAFT
Materials needed: One empty pop bottle, paint trays or paper plates, old T-shirts (to protect clothing), blue construction paper (one per child), snowflake stickers or craft gems, and white tempera paint.
Have the children make prints on blue paper by using the bottom of an empty pop bottle dipped in white paint (see photo above).
Let the bottle prints dry thoroughly. When dry, the children can add snowflake stickers or craft "gems" to the white prints to resemble snowflakes (see photo below).
GLOW STICK SNOWMEN
Materials needed: 3 glow stick bracelets per child, assorted small items for the eyes, nose, and buttons.
Assist the children in assembling the glow bracelets. Have the children make a snowman by placing the three circles on top of each other on a flat surface. The children can decorate their snowman anyway they desire. We used craft eyes, small foam cut-outs, and craft buttons for the snowman's features. Turn down the lights and take a picture! It is FUN!
FAMILY GAME - INDOOR SNOWBALL FIGHT
Materials needed: Rolled up white socks and a laundry basket or indoor "over the door" basketball hoop.
This game can be played in teams or individually. The goal of the game is to see how many "snowballs" (socks) can be thrown into the laundry basket(s) or through the hoop in one minute's time. Let younger children stand closer to the basket or hoop to play. **If you don't have enough white socks, play with crumbled white copy paper.
For a special bedtime snack....make these delicious cookies earlier in the day!
CHOCOLATE "SNOWBALL" DROPS
1/2 c. vegetable oil
1 1/2 c. sugar
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 c. unsweetened cocoa powder
2 c. flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 c. miniature chocolate chips
3/4 c. powdered sugar (to roll the dough in prior to baking)
Line cookie sheets with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the ingredients in the order listed above (EXCEPT FOR THE POWDERED SUGAR). Cover the dough and put in the refrigerator for a MINIMUM of 3 hours. Roll the dough into one inch balls. Roll each of the balls into the powdered sugar and place on a cookie sheet. Bake the cookies for approx.10-12 minutes and let cool.
Serve the cookies with a glass of milk or a cup of hot cocoa!
Wishing you sweet dreams and a fun-filled January!