It's snowing out and schools and day care centers across the South Coast are closed yet again, which means the kiddos are home and are probably three seconds from driving you completely bonkers (if they haven't successfully done so already).

Cries of "Dad, I'm bored," "There's nothing to do," and "(Insert sibling's name here) won't share their toys" are nothing new. So if you don't think of something for your children to do quick, you might have a mutiny on your hands. What are housebound parents to do when they are frantic as how to keep their young tykes busy and calm without resorting to doses of Benadryl or binding the wee ones with duct tape?

Here are some helpful suggestions that will hopefully work until the kids (and probably you too) pass out from exhaustion.

  • George Burba
    1

    Play Doh

    Remember when you were able to keep yourself entertained with Play Doh as a kid? The malleable clay was easy to transform into silly snakes, clown faces, or even entire little villages of colorful "snowmen." This product is just as popular today, and your kids will love it if you create right alongside them.

  • Jupiterimages
    2

    Coloring

    Kids don't really care whether they have three crayons or a box full of them, they just love to be creative. And coloring is a great way to inspire them to dream up amazing worlds only they can create. Not only is coloring a great activity, it can also give you a peek inside that head of theirs to see what's on their mind.

  • Purestock
    3

    Cooking

    This is perhaps one of my favorite things to do with kids. Whether you're making simple rolled up sammies, cutting cookies or baking a cake, children love to spend time with you in the kitchen, especially if they know there's a sweet reward at the end!

  • PhotoNotebook
    4

    Tea Party

    What little girl doesn't love a tea party? Gather around the stuffed animals, break out the plastic china and turn on your imagination. Little ones love when you engage with their fluffy playmates, and most of all, they love spending time with you. This is a memory maker for sure!

  • Zinkevych
    5

    Block Tower

    For the boys in your house, you might also try building the ultimate block tower! Kids love a challenge, and they are quick to see just how high they can stack their building blocks. Just remember the best part of all, getting to knock it down at the end!

  • Fuse
    6

    Dance Party

    Crank up the tunes and slip on your socks. It's time to teach the kids how to shake, rattle and roll. What's more fun than jamming to great music, jumping, bouncing and wearing those little tykes out? Just remember, tired kids turn into napping kids!

  • ostrinka
    7

    Reading Together

    When nap time finally does arrive (or you sense it is drawing close at least), this is the perfect time to cuddle with your kids and a good book. Whether you pull out Curious George, Charlotte's Web, or even one of Grimm's Fairy Tales, this is a habit you should definitely pick up early on. Not only does it teach your child to love books, but it is one of the best ways to draw close to your youngster. Even when they're grown, they're bound to remember the stories you shared together, and will in turn share them with their own children years later.