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Crystal Lake family therapist Dan Blair suggests bundling up and heading outside, even if it’s for a short time.

“Being outside gets exposure to light, and it helps (children) process stress hormones, use up adrenaline, and gives them an outlet,” he said. “The idea is to keep busy. Our tendency in the winter is to go into hibernation, and we get lazier and lazier. That makes it harder to concentrate in school, and it affects our mood.”

For that, the McHenry County Conservation District has a slew of - often free - activities, such as family exploration programs or cross-country skiing.

Then there are winter festivals, such as Groundhog Days in Woodstock, the Norge Ski Jump winter tournament in Fox River Grove and the Festival of the Sugar Maples in Marengo.

“Just because it’s cold out doesn’t mean you can’t go outside,” Marcelo said.

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Source: The (Crystal Lake) Northwest Herald, http://bit.ly/KmwWP4