Get Prepared and Get Outside this Whole Winter Season!

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This past weekend there were highs in the fifties, and the sun was shining. Outside time was plentiful and enjoyable. We soaked in all the moments enjoying time playing in the woods, taking a hike, skipping rocks on water, and riding our scooters and bikes. There was minimal complaining, and when complaints came, I countered with, “Just enjoy it because it is about to get way colder.” I’ve been anxiously anticipating the chill to come. Even as I encourage my boys to enjoy what we have, I am silently lamenting what is about to be gone. Gone are long summer days outside to be replaced with dark and longer winter days indoors. There are only so many games that can be played to try and appease the deep desire to be doing more. 

a boy bundled up In a coat as he plays in a sandbox outside

Despite how hard wintering with littles can be (shall I also mention during a pandemic?), there are still great moments to be had. Shockingly, some of my greatest winter mothering moments have happened when we embraced the chill and got outdoors. I once heard, “There is no bad weather, just poor preparation.” and decided to embrace that motto. I began last year by adopting that motto, gathering the gear, and getting outdoors. 
 
Here’s what you will need: 
 
* A great pair of snow pants or a snowsuit. Even on cold days without snow, a snowsuit provides a perfect second layer without adding layer upon layer for warmth. 
*Boots, gloves, and a hat. Keep the extremities warm, and the rest will follow. 
*A warm drink for afterward. 
*A good attitude. 
 
two little girls, bundled up in coats and hats as they squat down on a sidewalk to look at something on the ground
 
Equipped with all of these things, we were able to enjoy a lot of time outdoors last winter, even on very cold days. The best thing we can all do for our mentality and immune system is to get some fresh air. As long as you gather the right gear, the hardest part is getting out the door. If you can lead the charge that cold weather outdoor activities can be fun, I am sure your kids will follow. Some days can certainly be more difficult than others, but if you start as the weather turns, it tends to be easier and, from my experience, an outdoor winter makes for a happier winter. Get prepared and get out. I think you will thank me later. 
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Katie is a Des Peres mom of two young boys, Trace (2014) and Henry (2016). Katie stays home with her boys most of the time but also spends a bit of time away as a high school lacrosse coach. Katie enjoys connecting with other moms to run, meet at parks, explore new restaurants, listen to live music and discuss books. Katie and her boys can be found enjoying many activities around St. Louis including the Science Center, Zoo, Magic House, Museum of Transportation, Urban Fort and Frisco Train Store, but what they enjoy most is just being outdoors. They have tried many of the parks around St. Louis City and county and also love hiking trails at Laumeier Sculpture Park, Powder Valley and Shaw Nature Reserve. Katie and her family love all that St. Louis has to offer for families of young children and can most often be found taking advantage of all of the many opportunities.