We really have not had much of a winter this year. We got our first big snow in November, but it melted quickly and we haven't had much of anything since. Just lots of cold weather. We finally got hit with a pretty good storm on Valentine's Weekend. The kids were out of school all last week, and on Monday and Tue of this week. Today is their first day back, and we are expecting more snow tonight. i would not be surprised if today is their only day of school this week.
My husband and daughter both had the flu last week, and were pretty much stuck on the sofa. My boy and i somehow managed to avoid getting sick, but the cabin fever started to set in pretty quickly.
The week before the storm, i had picked up a puzzle at the goodwill for my boy who loves puzzles. So we pulled it out and decided working on it was a good way to spend the snow days. The puzzle is called Lost in a Jigsaw II and we picked it for $0.95. It is not your typical puzzle. All the edge pieces are the exact same shape, and all the center pieces are the exact same shape. The picture on the box shows the puzzle put together incorrectly, so it's not helpful at all. Puzzle must be completed by logic, not by color or fit. Puzzle can only be solved by figuring out the maze.
It took us three days, but we finished it!! Nothing like a few missing pieces to make a challenging puzzle, even more challenging. We all worked on this puzzle, but my boy and i did most of it. It was by far the most challenging puzzle we've ever done. The stone maze path has to pass by each of the animals in the zoo so they can be viewed from the path. The animals have to be arranged so that the predators are no in with the prey. It's a crazy puzzle, but it was a lot of fun to complete.
With all that snow came unbearable cold. For several days the temps were dipping down below zero. The only positive thing about below freezing temperatures is that we can make ice crafts. This is one of those things that helps me embrace the season, and keeps me from going completely batty. Rainbow ice Lanterns are a favorite. Click on the picture for the tutorial. You have to freeze one layer at a time, so they take all day to make. i like to make several at a time.
At the end of the day when all the layers are frozen and you ad the candle it makes it all worth it. They are just so gorgeous glowing at night against a snowing back ground.
There are a bunch of fun ice crafts tutorials on pinterest. i came across this one below for freezing water balloons awhile ago, and am not sure who to give original credit to.
This one is really easy. Add a couple of drops of food coloring to your balloon, and then fill the balloons up with water and tie the ends. Swish the water a round a bit to mix the color up, being really careful not to pop the balloons. We made ours in the evening, and set the balloons outside in below freezing temperatures.
In the morning we found them frozen solid. So we used scissors to snip the top of the the balloon and then peeled the rest of the balloon off. You have to do it quickly, because they are really cold and begin melting quickly indoors.
i was expecting the ice balls to be solid colors, but our were not. They had the coolest patterns and designs in them.
We decorated the snow in front of the house, and were really thrillled with how pretty the looked! We used really small balloons, so the ice balls were only 6-7 inches tall. i would love to try this again with large balloons. The very next day the temperatures went above freezing, and all of our ice crafts melted overnight. It was a little disappointing, but also part of the fun of ice crafts.
The kids are home from school again today, so we'll be looking for some more activities to keep us entertained.