8 Inexpensive Activities for Winter Time

8 Fun Activities for the Winter

It’s December, and even though it doesn’t quite feel like winter in Louisiana yet; it’s coming. It’s easy to get in a rut, and not carve out couple or family time in our hectic lives, but it’s so important! Here are some fun inexpensive activities to try this winter:

SLEDDING

I realize that Louisiana does not get many opportunities for sledding, but for all my northern friends – sledding is inexpensive and fun.

I grew up in Maine, so this was a common activity during my childhood. Find a hill and a sled (snow tube, tray, round saucers, anything that will glide on the snow) and go! It was a bonus when we got older and were able to use snowmobiles to get back to the top of the hill!

VISIT A FARM

Visiting a farm can be a lot of fun. Many farms have hay rides, corn mazes, and pumpkin patches available during the Fall and Winter times. These are usually only a few bucks per person, and is a great opportunity to burn a little child’s energy, or a way to have romantic cuddle time with your partner.

Pumpkin Picking

My son picking out his pumpkin at a pumpkin patch.

CHRISTMAS LIGHTS

One of my annual memories as a kid was my parents loading us kids in the car and driving around looking at all the prettily decorated houses. We would all comment in unison “OOOOOO AHHHHH”. Cost – Gas.

Or if you are able to spend a little more money, you can go somewhere that is decorated with lights for the holidays. My husband and I we have a tradition of looking at lights every winter, since our second date. It’s a great opportunity to hold hands, drink hot chocolate, and talk. When we lived in the New Orleans area, we went to Celebration in the Oaks; now that we are in Lafayette, we go to Noel Acadien au Village.

BOOK STORE

My family loves to read, so we often went to a bookstore just to chill out. We all went to our interested sections, found some books, and then found comfy chairs to peruse the books. My husband and I even did this when we were dating.

MUSEUMS

Go learn about something different, such as history or the arts. In the last few months, my husband and I have been to The National WW II Museum in New Orleans and the Children’s Museum of Acadiana. There will be different options depending on where you live. If nothing else, it will give something for the two of you to talk about.

BOWLING/INDOOR MINI-GOLF

I tend to forget about bowling and mini-golf, but have so much fun when I do it! Bonus, it’s indoors, so it’ll be warm. Many of them also have junk food and archade games which can also be fun. These activities may cost a little more than the other suggestions. But they are a lot of fun, burn energy (if you bring the kids), and is indoors (which can be really important when it’s cold outside).

ROAST MARSHMALLOWS & HOT COCOA

I love cold nights when I’m in fleece pajamas and we simply make hot cocoa, cookies, or even roast marshmallows. If you have a fire pit, you can roast the marshmallows outside, but this is also possible inside as well. These ingredients can also be inexpensive and delicious.

FONDUE

Want to eat more than marshmallows? Fondue is fun for all ages! You don’t need a fancy fondue pot either. Just use your pots, and heat up different sauces such as cheese, chocolate, caramel, marshmallows, or whatever else you desire. Then skewer your favorite meat, fruit, and veggies, and dip! If this is just for two, light some candles and play some music. If it’s for the whole family, lay down a blanket picnic style, sit in a circle and enjoy!

There you have it. 8 ways to spend time as a family or as a couple without breaking the bank. Since it’s often cold in the winter, you can also check out 5 Postpartum Date Night Ideas: Without Ever Leaving Your House.

Have fun!

What do you and your family do for fun? Leave your comments below!

I am a doula and teach childbirth and parenting classes in the Lafayette and Eunice, Louisiana areas. For more information and me and my services, visit M.Y. Birth & Baby.

All a Pregnant Woman Wants for Christmas

7 Perfect Gifts for a Pregnant Woman

Looking for that PERFECT gift for your soon-to-be mom friend or family member?

Often we think about getting something cute for the baby, while that is nice and appreciated, moms actually have many more pressing needs during this time; and they are often quite pricey!

So, what do pregnant women want for Christmas? I asked some veteran (been there done that) moms, and here is what they said:

MATERNITY CLOTHES

Maternity clothing was one reason I loved being pregnant. The clothing is so soft and stretchy to accommodate your frequently changing body.

“I was happy to receive gift cards for maternity clothes! They are expensive. And let’s be honest, by the end of the holiday season my clothes start to feel especially snug. New ones are a blessing!” – Hailie Sue Wolfe, Abilene, TX

I also loved belly bands. They can help women transition from pre-pregnancy clothes to maternity clothes. I loved them because they kept my pants up; and I didn’t get that annoying chaffing on my legs from pulling up my pants all day!

ACCESSORIES

How about accessories- because you can still wear them when you gained 40 pounds. Scarfs are your friend.” – Sarah Naomi Clark, Ukiah, CA

Sometimes putting together an outfit can be frustrating when you are pregnant. Accessories are great because you can still fit in them regardless of your size. Some other possibilities are purses, jewelry, and belts.

MASSAGE

I had a relatively comfortable pregnancy, and I contribute much of that to   regular massages and chiropractic care throughout my pregnancy.

Pregnant women spend so much time thinking and caring for their growing little one. Christmas can be a time to help mom pamper herself with a much-needed massage. Her loved ones can either plan a get-away or give her a spa gift card. Either way, she’s going to love it!” – Cameo Sherman, Bowie and Annapolis, MD

For partners, you can also offer to give a massage yourself.

“I’m pretty sure one of my clients would tell you that me teaching her husband a few ways to relieve pregnancy pain on her back was the best Christmas gift she got.” – Brooke Harralson, Fort Worth, TX

PAMPERING

Along with a massage, women enjoy other types of pampering, such as manicures, pedicures (it’s hard to reach your feet late in pregnancy), and relaxing baths.

They may also need tools that help them care for themselves better, such as special pillows for sleeping or birth balls.

“Pregnant women might like a nice yoga ball for Christmas since it makes sitting so much more comfortable. Some Epsom salts for the bath would help ease the aches and pains of pregnancy too!” – Brooke Harralson, Fort Worth, TX

EDUCATION

Even as a nurse, I had much to learn in my short 9 months of pregnancy. Comprehensive childbirth education classes were a game changer for me and my husband. He was so supportive during my labor and birth! It is also a great opportunity for the couple to bond every week. These classes can be a little bit pricey, so this is a great gift to split with a few friends!

Books are also a great gift. My mother gave me the The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding while I was pregnant; I still use it as a reference. Many books from the Dr. Sears Library are also good, such as The Birth Book: Everything You Need to Know to Have a Safe and Satisfying Birth.

BIRTH PROFESSIONAL FUND

 

There are many professionals that can make a huge impact on a woman’s pregnancy and birth experience, but the cost can really add up.

“I always wished people would donate to my home birth fund. I.e. Pay my midwife fund. Also doula, prenatal massage, chiropractor, postpartum massage and chiropractic adjustment.” – Kristi Keen, Sugar Land, TX

A doula is a birth professional, not a medical professional, that helps couples navigate pregnancy, birth, and postpartum. A doula works with the partner in supporting the mother continuously during labor.

POSTPARTUM

The postpartum period can be an intense time for new parents. The good news is there are many ways to help.

“I wish I could have gotten a gift card for a maid service. I also wished for an ergobaby carrier and one of those woven wraps with the music notes.” – Kristi Keen, Sugar Land, TX

Babywearing is a great way to recreate the womb, comfort baby, promote bonding, and give back mom the use of her hands. Other gifts that can help postpartum are gift certificates for massage, chiropractors, and restaurants.

So, put down that cute onesie, and consider one of these gifts instead. Her, her family, and their budget will thank you! Merry Christmas!

Have other gift suggestions? Comment below!

I teach childbirth and parenting classes, and provide doula services, in Lafayette and Eunice, Louisiana and the surrounding areas. For more information about me and my services, visit M.Y. Birth & Baby.