Cabin Fever…

[flickr id=”11782559973″ thumbnail=”medium” overlay=”true” size=”original” group=”” align=”none”] Like always, it would seem that winter break started with a flurry of activity for my family. We had to move again this December. We found a perfect two flat building to move into in oak Park and couldn’t be happier with it. Much happier than with the place we were at last year. We spent a week moving everything from the old place to the new one. We finished just in time.
Then the snow came. Since the snow started falling we have been pretty much hunkered down unpacking and getting the new place organized. To be honest it’s my least favorite part about moving because I get impatient and just want it done.

Then the cabin fever sets in. The kiddos are especially affected. Since we just moved, we haven’t been able to have out internet connection set up in our new home. So that means no streaming movies or cartoons. I actually had to brave the storm to head into the library to post this. It’s been too cold out for them or, too be honest, for us grown ups to go outside for too long.  Plus, once you’ve shoveled your driveway three times in one snow storm, who wants to go back outside?

We have been getting creative with activities. My daughter got a marker coloring set for Christmas and I have been teaching her how to layer color to get the colors she doesn’t have. Secondary and tertiary colors are magic to a five year old. Playdough can be good for an hour of fun as well. Just be prepared to make everything they request at a moment’s notice. And quickly. And the DVD collection has been getting more attention than it has in years.

That’s the thing about Chicago winters. They’re rough. They happen every year and you learn to deal with it. I have lived here my entire life and I still don’t enjoy winter. But you adapt. You learn to layer, accessorize for function, not fashion. I just got complemented on my goggles.

The next few days are going to be even worse. Negative teens as high temperatures. As I am starting my third decade of Chicago winters, here’s my advice: Don’t go outside if you can avoid it while it’s in the subzero plunge. Break out the board games, but don’t keep score. You will be trapped inside with your “opponents” for the next few days and nothing can make that more uncomfortable than a game of monopoly gone wrong. Have extra blankets on hand and settle in for a movie marathon. I recommend the extended cuts of Lord of the Rings. Trust me, you’ll have the time.