Thursday

6 Ways To Bring Nature Indoors This Winter!

I have kind of a love/hate relationship with winter. On the one hand I love the way freshly fallen snow looks. I love being able to curl up with a cup of hot chocolate anytime I want without having to turn down the air conditioner o. I also just enjoy change. It is fun having a different set of activities to do and experience. On the other hand I HATE driving in the snow. I don't like any winter sports and I live in Oklahoma. We only get snow few times a year at best and the rest of the time it is brown, cold and a little dreary. By the end of February I am over winter. 
I am tired of dressing warm to play outdoors. I am tired of being one of the only ones who wants to go outdoors. And I miss the green of spring and summer. So this year I have decided to try an experiment; I am going to find ways to bring nature indoors.

It won't change the fact that I still have to dress warm to go outdoors but I am hoping having more nature around me will help my overall mood. That watching green things grow, even indoors, can boost healing and productivity (source). 
I sprouted lemon seed a couple winters ago and really enjoyed it. 
So far I have found a few ways to bring nature indoors that are very low or no cost, that utilize waste, and that kids can be involved with. Our winter isn't quite here yet but it is coming fast and I want to be prepared this year.

Here are a few of the ways I will be bringing nature indoors this winter. Hope you will join in!
  1. Nature-inspired crafts. The possibilities here are endless. Last year we made pine cone ornaments. You can find a ton more inspiration on my Christmas: Au Natural Pinterest Board. After Christmas there are still plenty of crafts and decorations that can be made using natural materials. My Pinterest board Kids - Recycled or Nature Inspired Crafts has plenty of ideas. 
    Simple decoration I made using pine cones and burlap. 
  2. Grow a windowsill garden. Once again there are are a ton of ideas for this. One of my favorites is this windowsill succulent garden. I  haven't done anything quite so fancy. I just used old jars and planted some herbs. 
  3. Raise butterfly's. This is probably best towards the end of the winter but it would be fun none the less. 
    Source
  4. Natural materials sensory bin or nature table. The idea here is to gather natural materials and bring them indoors for the free play. Rhythms of Play has a list of materials perfect for indoor play. Generally there is a theme for the bin or table but free play works well too. The post Playing and Learning with Natural Materials is chalked full of fun ideas for incorporating natural materials into everyday play. 
    Source
  5. Bird feeder - Doesn't really bring nature indoors but if you place them near a window you can at least watch from indoors. A couple years ago my neighbor had bird feeders and the kids and i loved watching them birds all winter. There are a ton of options for bird feeders out there. You can buy one or make it yourself. Last year we made one out of sticks, pipe cleaners and Cheerios. 
  6. Grow food from kitchen scraps. Yep, you can regrow some of your kitchen waste. There are even foods that regrow using just water. What We Do All Day has had good success regrowing kitchen scraps as well. I just love the window greenhouse. 
    Source
How you do all survive the winter or is winter your favorite season?

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