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30 Winter Bucket List Ideas to Enjoy as a Family

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What are some fun ideas to add to my winter bucket list?

Winter is my least favorite time of year, but the one thing that makes it better is having a winter bucket list. Find the things that you love doing during the winter while spending time with your family.

When I made the autumn bucket list, my plan was for you to use this list year after year to make the most of your autumn activities.

But with this winter bucket list, I don’t expect you to be able to do all these things each year (especially if it’s a year without much snow). But there’s definitely something for everyone, so find the ideas that are best for your family and give them a try.

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What to do when it’s freezing outside?

Even when it’s freezing outside, there are plenty of things you can add to your winter bucket list: museum trips, bowling nights, movie marathons, and good food to name a few. Bundle up in your favorite winter clothes and warm blankets and enjoy those colder days indoors.

And don’t forget once those temps warm up just a bit, there’s so much to do outside in winter, even as simple as making some snowballs.

I’ve rounded up 30 things you need to add to your winter bucket list this year, or just print ours and check it off as you go.

What do you put on a winter bucket list?

Winter Bucket List: Outdoor Activity Ideas

man, woman and child sitting in the snow
Photo by Victoria Borodinova from Pexels

1. Play in snow

So, the simplest thing you can do outside in winter is just play in the snow.

And you can do it with kids of any age. Bundle them up and get out there with them. Stay out until your cheeks are rosy red, then come in for some warm food and drinks.

2. Take a sleigh ride

This has actually been on my personal winter bucket list for years.

I always pictured doing this somewhere in Vermont, but if you’re not in for a winter trip north, find somewhere in your area that offers sleigh rides. Begin by contacting local stables near you that offer riding in the summer.

3. Go ice skating

If you have an outdoor skating rink in your area (I’m thinking like the one in Rockefeller Center), rent some skates and do a few laps.

Of course, an indoor rink would work just as well. Or you could even create your own ice rink in your backyard.

4. Try skiing or snowboarding

If you’re feeling a bit like a daredevil this winter, check out skiing or snowboarding.

If you’re already comfortable on the slopes, definitely make this a priority on your winter bucket list.

5. Go sledding

For an easier outdoor winter activity, go sledding. It’s something you can do in your own backyard (if you have a good hill).

Or check out a local park in your area that may have a better area for sledding.

6. Build a snowman

Do you want a build a snowman? YES!

Get creative with your snowman. Give him some clothes or use some food coloring to liven him up. Or skip the snowman shape all together and make a dinosaur or a castle. You could use an old beach sand bucket for shaping.

Winter Bucket List: Indoor Activity Ideas

bowling alley
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7. Visit a museum

On days when you really don’t want to have fun in the snow (or maybe this winter hasn’t been as snowy as you hoped), check out your local museum.

To keep your kiddo interested, make a scavenger hunt or museum bingo. List out things you know they have at your museum and have your kiddo mark off the things they’ve seen. Bonus points if they can find a museum curator to get more information.

This is just a sneaky way to add some educational fun to your winter bucket list.

8. Start a new workout routine

Once those Christmas treats are gone, it’s time to get back at the old gym routine.

Except this year, you should start a new workout routine. It’s the perfect way to reduce boredom and keep you motivated and also use different muscle groups.

And as your kids grow, you can introduce them to the benefits of a healthy lifestyle. So, find something they would like to do as well.

9. Visit an indoor waterpark

One thing you can’t enjoy in the winter is going to the pool or a waterpark, unless it’s indoors.

This is something that would truly surprise your kiddos, especially if there’s not one in your neighborhood. Just pack them (and their bathing suits) in the car and show up.

10. Go bowling

Bowling is a great sport to add to your winter bucket list because you can make it as competitive or as fun as you want.

It’s also something the whole family can enjoy. Use the bumpers for younger kids (or yourself, I won’t tell). And for toddlers, ask if there is a ball ramp available. Then they only have to push the ball down the ramp, and you don’t have to worry about it getting stuck halfway down the lane.

11. Have a movie marathon

Those cold winter months offer a great time for a movie marathon.

Whether you decide on Christmas movies or movies with beach theme (hello, warm weather), snuggle up with each other and a warm blanket and spend some time not worrying about chores or to do lists.

12. Have a game night

Family game night is my favorite anytime activity, but even more so when you’re stuck inside due to bad weather.

Let your kiddos pick their favorite games. Or make up some family games: Pictionary, charades, or minute to win it.

13. Snuggle under a warm blanket

When you really don’t feel like doing anything, the best winter bucket list idea is finding your favorite blanket and getting your snuggle on.

Curl up by yourself with a good book or movie. Or do a family snuggle after a day of playing in the snow. Winter is the best season for slowing down.

Winter Bucket List: Winter Food Ideas

brownie with chocolate sauce
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14. Make a hot chocolate bar

Try something this winter to keep yourselves warm and enjoy some hot chocolate.

To make things more fun for the whole family, set up a hot chocolate bar. Include all the treats: cinnamon, peppermint, marshmallows, graham crackers, chocolate chips, etc. Then let your kiddos experiment with the different flavors to find their favorite.

15. Make some homemade soup or chili

There’s nothing better on a cold day than a crock pot full of some homemade soup or chili.

Try out a new recipe or invite friends over for a winter chili cook off.

winter bucket list: kids ice skating

16. Make a warm dessert

As I’m typing this, I’m definitely thinking of a warm, gooey brownie. But that’s just me. I wouldn’t fault you for enjoying a slice of pie warmed in the microwave with just a little ice cream on top.

Wrap yourself up in a blanket or warm sweater and enjoy that decadent treat.

Winter Bucket List: Holiday Ideas

Happy Valentine's Day spelled in Scrabble tiles
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17. Spend Christmas with family

This one may be a no-brainer, as this is what most of us do.

But as part of your bucket list challenge, I want you to really connect with your family this Christmas.

Maybe that means spending less and appreciating all you have. Maybe that means making fewer outside commitments (you don’t have to head up the school play or fundraiser).

Be present in the moment with whatever family you choose to spend the holiday season.

18. Make New Year’s resolutions

I, for one, do not like making New Year’s resolutions because I think it’s only something I’m going to fail at before the Christmas decorations are put away.

However, it is more likely that you will achieve your goals when you write them down. So, pick 3 things you want to accomplish this year.

Make them simple enough you can complete them. And make them measurable. Instead of “losing weight,” you will lose 5 pounds by March. Instead of “reading more,” you will read 1 new book a month.

When you actually complete your goals, reward yourself. It is a big deal! Then make some new goals. (Imagine what you could accomplish!)

19. Celebrate Valentine’s Day in a special way

It might be a one-on-one celebration with you and your hubby. (It’s always nice to have some alone time.)

Or it may be doing something sweet for your kiddos. A special breakfast (heart-shaped pancakes). A note in their lunch box. A special gift. Or even a Valentine themed scavenger hunt around the house for a fun surprise.

Related: Best Valentine Books for Toddlers

20. Plan a countdown to Spring

Create a fun way to countdown to Spring and beat those winter blues.

I recommend starting on Groundhog’s Day (February 2).

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the practice of pulling a groundhog from its hole on a crisp, early February morning (or the corresponding Bill Murray movie), Groundhog’s Day marks six weeks until spring. And the groundhog determines whether that will be six more weeks of winter or six more weeks until spring.

For your countdown, make giant flowers from construction paper (one for each week) and make petals with the appropriate number of days. Then pull a petal off the flower each day as you count down. I LOVE these kinds of countdowns because they clean up after themselves!

Winter Bucket List: Creative Ideas

dad watching daughter draw a tree
Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

21. Create a winter craft

My favorite crafts for my home are wreaths for my doors. They’re easy to make and you get to be super creative.

But get your kiddos involved as well. Make paper plate snowmen or pinecone bird feeders. Try making your own Christmas cards or wrapping paper.

Winter is also a great time of year to gather up pictures from the prior year and create a photo book. This is the easiest way to keep up with organizing all those photos year after year.

22. Make some frozen water balloons

Have you tried this yet?

Fill some balloons with water and food coloring. Then set them out in the snow to freeze. Once frozen, cut the balloon away and you’ll have beautiful orbs of colored ice to decorate your yard.

For a fun experiment (or if the temps haven’t reached freezing), make room in your freezer and hide the balloons in there. Make a freezer set and an outdoor set, and have your kiddos compare notes on the two.

23. Keep a snowball in the freezer

Here’s another fun experiment for winter…

Make a snowball. Store it in a Ziploc bag and place it in your freezer. See how long you can keep it before it turns to a ball of ice. Or make a few and take them out after the snow melts and enjoy one final snowball fight.

Winter Bucket List: Getting Through Winter Ideas

tracking expenses with pen and calculator
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24. Create a budget

This is a great addition to your winter bucket list after all those holiday bills come in.

You could set your budget for the whole year, but it may be easier to do in smaller chunks: a quarter, a month, or even a week at a time (if you’re new to budgeting).

And if you want to really watch your spending habits, try a no spend January or February. A month where you only spend money on necessary items: food, utilities, etc.

Teaching your kids how to create a budget and manage their money is a wonderful life skill that will set them up on a strong path for the future.

25. Get ready for Spring

This one is kind of vague, and I did that on purpose so you could interpret it any way you like.

Maybe it’s putting up new decorations around your home or starting a garden. Maybe it’s switching out your winter wardrobe for lighter clothes and donating what you no longer want.

Maybe it’s making sure your kiddos have all the gear they need for rainy days. Or preparing for those upcoming spring holidays.

Whatever it may be, start planning now because it will be here before you know it.

26. Plan a trip

One of my favorite things to do when winter seems like it will never end is start planning my spring or summer vacation.

This is a great one to get your kiddos involved with, as well (if they’re old enough and won’t be asking if it’s time to go every 5 minutes).

Take everyone’s ideas into consideration when looking for a destination. Once you have that picked, discuss what activities you’ll do. Then start a savings chart for each of your kids, so that they have fun money of their own to spend while they’re away.

Related: Budget for the Perfect Vacation

Winter Bucket List: Memory Making Ideas

family of four in winter gear standing in front of door
Photo by Yan Krukov from Pexels

27. Reconnect with family

If you live in an area with harsh winters, it may be hard to be with loved ones during this season. But that doesn’t mean you should forget about keeping those bonds strong.

Set up a weekly video chat, make a phone call, or even have your kiddos write letters to far away family. Grandparents would love getting a hand-written letter from their grandchild, and since kids love getting mail, they could become penpals with a cousin.

28. Take a family photo

Whether it’s a professional photo or one you’ve taken yourself, be sure to capture those memories.

Take it in front of the tree. Or outside during the first snow of the season. Or take tons of photos while out sledding or that first skiing lesson.

And don’t forget to get in those photos too, momma!

29. Take a trip

So, I know I already mentioned that you should plan a trip as part of your winter bucket list.

But sometimes winters are just too long, and you can’t take it anymore, and you need to get away. Do it! Find yourself a warmer climate and enjoy some of that sunshine.

On the flip side, if you’re already living in a warm climate, take that trip to visit a snowier location. That is a memory your family won’t soon forget.

30. Practice self care

With the darker days and colder temps, there is one thing we must all be adding to our winter bucket list, and that is self care!

You can’t do all those amazing momma tasks and cross everything off your bucket list if you’re depleted. So, take some time for winter self care, and don’t forget to teach your kiddos the importance of self care, as well.


There you have it: the 30 winter bucket list ideas to enjoy as a family. Outdoor activities, indoor activities, food ideas, holiday ideas, creative ideas, ideas for getting through winter, and memory making ideas are all included in this winter bucket list.

Now get out there and have some fun! Don’t forget to get your copy of our winter bucket list, so you can start crossing things off today.

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30 Winter Bucket List Ideas to Enjoy as a Family

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