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Winter thermos picnic

It is snowing in Toronto today. Some may think that is proof of the picnic season being officially over. Of course, that is not true for us at and for you. Many of our most memorable picnics have been alfresco, in the snow.

In our outdoor playgroups, the snacks and picnics are a very important part of the gathering. Bringing some good food and some hot chocolate is an important treat after your explorers have a little hike or are just out for some good old fashion play.

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10 ways to play with ice

Last week we had a few cold days in Toronto, but with little snow. So what do you do when there are freezing conditions but no snow? We play with ice and create art. This is not just for kids, but also for everyone who is a child at heart. This past week has also been fun with all the interaction on Instagram and Facebook, it is great to hear how our readers play with ice and see how their posts can inspirer others to play more with ice.

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10 Outdoor play ideas for winter

Happy New Year !

We have had a wonderful holiday in Florida; it is so strange that we have so many different climates on this big continent. Being able to pick your own oranges from a tree and then squeeze orange juice is such a cool thing to do for an outdoor kid from the North.

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Make Christmas cookies for the birds

suetcookiesfrontWe set up our birdfeeder for the winter last Friday. The girls painted and helped set-up our squirrel proof birdfeeder and we discovered a mourning dove and a cardinal checking it out this Sunday. Hopefully we will have as many birds visiting us this year as we did last. It is quite amazing how much fun and entertaining a birdfeeder can be for the whole family.

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Florida style outdoors Christmas

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swimmingmanatees1Every year we head south to visit our extended family in Florida. This year it will be our 10th Christmas in Florida. When asking my 7 year old what is our Christmas tradition she said  “Swimming with manatees in Florida.”

Every Christmas Eve, we wake up early and get on a boat to spend the day on the Crystal River with our Florida family. We are up early because the best chance to see manatees is sunrise, especially during the winter months when manatees gather up in Three Sisters Springs to stay warm. This is a protected place warmed by the spring waters constant 22°C (72°F) temperature. According to manatee experts, the best weather for viewing is after a cold front moves through central Florida and the manatees congregate in these warm spring areas.



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Swimming with manatees


Holiday ice art

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Ice,ice baby

By Kari Svenneby

One year we celebrated Christmas in Norway, my home country. My parents were scratching their heads when my husband and daughter started to fill balloons with water and put them out on the porch to freeze. We then took cookie cutters on cookie trays and buckets and filled them with water.

Every time we were having dinner or hosting a holiday party last year, we would look at the beautiful ice sculptures glowing in the candlelight. It was so easy, cheap, environmentally friendly, educational and so beautiful.

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