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Spring is almost here. You can smell it. Taste it. See it on the horizon. Or at least that’s what you keep telling yourself. You get a 35 degree day and you’re ready to go out with no coat or jacket and are hit hard by the frigid reality that it’s still winter. In Ohio.

Let’s be honest. Winter in the Midwest can be brutal, especially with little kids. If you’re like me, you probably have hit your limit of being stuck inside and are getting stir crazy. Today I’m sharing some of our simple, low cost, life saving go to places!

  1. Westerville Public library

    The library has been our number 1 go to for years! I absolutely love the Westerville library and many of the other local Columbus libraries are incredible too. Westerville’s kids area is packed with a bunch of things for kids to do and play with. They also have classes and events for various ages going on several times during the week.

  2. IKEA

    Not every city is lucky enough to have an IKEA, but thankfully Columbus got one this past year! On cold days it’s been a great place to pack up the kids are run out to. If you’re an IKEA card member, you get free coffee! I’ll usually load the boys in their stroller, grab a coffee, and roam the top and bottom floors. It’s nice for me because I get to look around and browse items while the boys are contained in the stroller. Sometimes we’ll grab pizza or an ice cream on the way out for about $3.

  3. Chik-Fil-A

    I could go on and on about this place! It’s been my saving grace on several occasions! I love that there is the indoor play area for young kids and everyone is always so nice. Pro tip- try and head there for breakfast before the noon rush! I love Chik fil a because I can watch Dom play while I hang at the table with Isaac and eat.

  4. Costco

    Haha! If you’ve seen my stories on Instagram, are you even surprised? We do a lot of our grocery shopping at Costco, but it’s also a great place to go if you’ve been cooped in the house for too long and just need a quick break! I have boys, so any place that offers a plethora of free samples is gold in my book. I’ve had some of my favorite times with the boys just walking around Costco talking. As far as not breaking the bank, you can always just go to the cafe and grab a hot dog, pizza, or a drink for under $5! I’ll usually split something with Dom.

  5. Westerville Community Center

    I first discovered the community center on accident a couple years ago. We went in and I learned they have an indoor playground! It’s open to the public and open year round. It’s great for kids around 8 and under. The community center also has several things to do and classes you can sign up for both as a resident or non resident. We did swim lessons here for Dominick last year during the winter and loved it!

I hope this list helps! If you have any places to add that you love around town- let me know!