When the weather turns cold and clouds cover the sky, can snow be far behind? Sledding is a favourite winter activity for kids and adults alike, and it doesn't require fancy equipment. Store-bought sleds work great, but it's even more fun to reach into the attic and play with creative homemade sleds.
Search for objects hard and round to make a good sled. Metal rubbish bin lids, old toilet seat covers, storage tote lids, discarded satellite dishes and laundry baskets all make great sleds.
Search the garage for plastic items---plastic is slick, and it slides great! You can even blow up the inflatable swimming pool toys, grab a plastic laundry basket, or hop on an old shower curtain for an exciting ride down the hill.
You can find more inspiration in the kitchen. Cafeteria trays made out of the old hard plastic are perennial favourites, though the newer trays are skid-resistant and less slippery. An old baking tray, large plastic food platter, or even a cardboard pizza box are other food-related homemade sled choices.
Think big! Believe it or not, a discarded mattress not only slides down a sled hill, but holds a lot of kids and is soft in a crash. An old car bonnet can really slide down a hill fast-- just make sure you remove protruding hardware.
Check the local thrift stores for old snow sports equipment. Small children can toboggan on old adult skis, and larger children will find it fun to slide on in snowboard. You can even get fancy and attach a pair of discarded keys to a base to make a fast sled (see References).
Give the kids something to hold onto--drill holes to attach loops of ropes to the sides of your homemade sleds.
Make sure to cover sharp edges of metal sleds (car bonnets, washing machine lids etc.) with duct tape.