March Madness is in full swing at our house and the kids’ cabin fever has reached an all-time high. The winter thaw has not yet given way to spring, and this not-cold-yet-not-warm-enough weather is making us all crazy. It is impossible to send the kids outside for the afternoon because it is too slick and slushy to enjoy the outdoors for any extended period.

Having toddlers in this weather is a complete nightmare. First, let’s talk about the clothes. How do you put gloves on a child whose fingers are both super short and super chubby, and expect them to stay on? How do I get their cube-like feet in the snow boots with the socks and snow pants? Is there a secret trick to getting them to keep their hats on? And with two toddlers, as soon as I get the second fully bundled up, the first has at least taken off the mittens, the hat and the boots. Needless to say, by the time I get both of them ready to head out, I am sweating worse than I was that one time I worked out this year.

And, of course, within minutes of getting outside for a fun afternoon of sledding, my oldest yells the dreaded words, “I have to go potty.” Nooooooooo.  We rush frantically inside, undo all the layers, drop a mitten in the toilet, fish it out, go potty, find new (mismatched) mittens, get dressed again and head back outside, only to have my youngest child exclaim that he is too cold and needs a snack. My attempt at outdoor fun feels like a colossal failure.

As Montanans we spend a lot of time outside. It’s in our DNA to be outdoorsy and adventurous through every season. I want to pass on that winter excitement and teach my kids to really enjoy this time of the year, but that doesn’t make it any easier to keep up with the hats, scarves and inevitably missing mittens.

I hope I am not alone when I send out SOS signals as my kids swing from the rafters like wild animals after being indoors for too long. I love you, winter, with all your snow angels, pink noses and hot chocolate. I am sure I will miss you dearly in August. But please, just go home for now so I can send my kids to summer camp already. This mama is all frosted out.

Blair Fjeseth is a working professional and proud Montana mom. Follow her on Instagram @blair_mt.

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