Getting through Winter with young kids can be really freaking hard. Temperatures drop, snow falls, schools close, and there's only so much they can do outside before you have to call them in to warm up. And while we try to get our kids out of the house as much as we can during the Winter, our wallets can only take so many indoor bouncy castles and playgrounds. So, it's been crucial that we make the most of their toy situation at home.
The days of my kids whining and saying "I'm bored!" over and over again are few and far between these days thanks to an awesome toy hack I recently learned about. Without my children knowing (usually after they've gone to sleep), I hunt around the house and gather all of their toys and crafts. I hide them in one spot and give them only a few to play with. Then, when I sense that the kids are getting bored with what they've got after a day or two, I hide those toys and rotate a few different ones in. This way, my children see them as brand new again. They're excited to play with them because they haven't seen them in awhile, and they're always occupied for large chunks of time.
I handle the crafts in a similar way. I keep many of them tucked away somewhere and bring them out one at a time, making a whole afternoon or day of it. Making crafts takes time, and by putting more enthusiasm or even a theme behind it, my kids get really excited. Also, it's key to stock up on art supplies at the Dollar Store at the start of Winter for this very reason. I bring out fun crayons, paper, and markers that they haven't seen before, and they get so into it!
By simply hiding their toys and rotating them out in small groups, their Winter boredom is a thing of the past. Sure, my kids still have their days when they're sick of being cooped up and want to play outside, but overall, this one hack has saved my sanity on many different levels.