January chill: where to play indoors, besides your house - MetroFamily Magazine
MetroFamily Magazine

Where OKC parents find fun & resources

January chill: where to play indoors, besides your house

by Callie Collins

Reading Time: 3 minutes 

Oklahoma City family fun happens indoors when it can't take place outside. 

I can't think of a single January as warm and pleasant as this year's. And yet. It's freezing out some days, literally dipping below 32 degrees and sending everyone at my house scrambling for his gloves before school.

This warm winter makes the cold days feel frigid, even if they're few and far between.

It's confusing to small kids when the rules change literally every day. I can't let them do the same thing when it's 72 as when it's 27 out; we've definitely had a few of those abrupt changes this winter.

"Mom, I want to play outside with Picasso," my five-year-old pleads. "I have a big coat. He has a fur coat. So can we?" Picasso is our cat. Isaac is our almost-kindergartner. Neither can take the cold for too long.

 The answer is rarely "yes" right now. 

Isaac's school relocates student recess to the gym when it's cold outside and his childhood is not my childhood in the rural north. I can remember misplacing my mittens at his same age and choosing which hand I liked best to keep it warm, alternating between the lone glove and my pocket. There was an actual frostbite policy at my school, as in you couldn't play indoors unless there was a risk of frostbite.

Oklahoma City is cold but not that cold. Times have changed and so have the floors of my home as play has moved entirely indoors. 

Action figures, toy cars and storybooks line our staircase. I see Transformers, Hot Wheels and Duplos, along with random pencils and gummy bears, in odd places. It's winter and playing outside right now isn't something I can encourage without a twinge of mom guilt. Even Picasso lives inside now.

It doesn't have to be this way. There are other places to play, nearby places with a variety of activities. We haven't been to Unpluggits Playstudio in a long time, for example, and my oldest asked to go back the other day.

Unpluggits is especially fun for families like ours because there are a variety of activities for kids of different ages. Sam is 9 and his class made pottery there as the parent gift this year. I have a handcrafted cookie plate for Santa that we just unwrapped this Christmas Eve that he proudly created.

 Isaac is at the perfect age to paint, use Play-Doh and spread glitter around in unusual quantities. What's great about doing those activities at Unpluggits is that the mess stays behind. Honestly, I have no desire to add art supplies to the variety of items needing pretty much constant clean up around here and if he didn't do it there, he probably wouldn't do it at all. 

Gabriel is 2 and there's a pirate ship playground where he can run around. What's age-appropriate where in the different areas at Unpluggits is nicely defined and admission isn't expensive. 

If you do have to stay indoors, I can recommend one family standby my kids just discovered this winter break that has proven surprisingly entertaining: Monopoly. Bonus points for the chocolate Monopoly version. Sam discovered Monopoly the day after Thanksgiving and he's been wanting to play again ever since. It was totally new to him. 

Find MetroFamily's Indoor Fun List here for other ideas of where to go when the weather is too chilly for outdoor play.

Know of other cold weather activities or venues? Click here to tell us about them!

more stories

Verified by MonsterInsights