Remember, Remember it's November
November is a funny time of year, offering neither the balminess of an Indian summer, nor the crisp cold days and ink black nights of deepest winter. Falling between holidays, back to school and Christmas it can feel a bit of an anti-climax. So how do you shift those winter blues and make the most of quality family time? Here’s a bucket list of things to try this November.
- Go for a walk in a wood, taking in the smells of fungi and feel of damp leaves underfoot. Notice the vibrant earthy colours and the sounds of the forest. Collect leaves, sticks or moss for making collages, mobiles, masks or fairy costumes.
- Create a den in or outdoors to star gaze on clear nights and read bedtime stories by torchlight.
- Make bread rolls together to enjoy with steaming hot soup.
- Plan a themed meal complete with themed place mats, drinks and games.
- Pick a different family board game to play each week. There’s nothing better on a wintery Sunday evening than playing a game of Monopoly or Uno after a lovely roast dinner.
- Enjoying a delicious mug of hot chocolate with marshmallows may be as simple as it gets, but in my family this is considered a real treat, especially when combined with watching a great film by a roaring fire.
- Toasting marshmallows is the archetypal memory-making experience. If you’re worried about health and safety and feel your children are too young, you could always try arm length oven gloves and goggles like my children did!
- I’m a firm believer in visiting the beach off season. So wrap up for a trip to the seaside. With ears, necks, hands and feet toasty and warm you are free to enjoy splashing in the sea or make welly prints on soft sand. Pick shells or stones to create words and pictures on the beach. If there’s a stinging wind, bury yourself in a sand hole to escape a sand blasting. If you’re feeling adventurous why not make sand angels or build mini dams to divert the sea!
- Make it your mission to spot changes in the natural enviornment this November, from trees to fungi, birds to fish, find out what to spot and create your own Nature Diary.
- Eat the season by trying a different November food every day? Choose from beetroot, kale, celery, leeks, parsnips, chestnuts, pears and pomegranate to sample a taste of November.
- Why not celebrate one of these wacky special days in November, like Look for Circles day (2nd November), Sandwich Day (what filling will you pick?); or even Cook Something Bold Day , or make up your own celebration to remember.
All these low or no cost ideas are fun, fulfilling and the stuff of children’s memories. The sorts of things they will fondly recall as adults and doubtless try to recreate in their own family traditions. Make November the month to create your own playlist.