It’s official, school holidays are here and whilst children go wild, many of us adults will be entering survival mode. Whether you’re trying to juggle work or not, finding ways to entertain your children every day for weeks can feel a bit daunting, not to mention costly! That’s why we’re here to help, because time away from school doesn’t have to be all about big days out and bouncing from activity to activity. We’re sharing some of our favourite ways to keep the children entertained and keep you sane this summer. Ready to hear our secrets? Then read on…
Rain or shine, the best way to get through the extended time off is to get outside. The best bit? It’s free! Whether it’s a trip to the beach, a walk in the woods or a play at the park, there are plenty of places to get out and about. Burn off some energy by walking (or parking further away and walking!) to your next adventure. There are lots of ways you can make a regular walk more fun as well; make it into a scavenger hunt by making a list of things you need to find first, make a pirate map to lead you to treasure (a cafe or a snack pitstop!), let the kids decide which way you go at every junction. Raining outside? Don the wellies and get puddle splashing! You can also invest in some outdoor games for your children to encourage new skills and exercise; a basketball hoop for older kids or a sand & water table for younger ones are both good all round entertainers.
Invest In Some New Toys
Investing in a couple of new toys and activities can really help on the days where you’ve got little planned. We like to set a budget and allow the kids to choose something themselves, it encourages them to start to understand the value of things and get involved in choices. For a great selection and wallet friendly prices, we recommend online retailers such as vidaXL who have a huge range of toys on offer. From archery sets to den building kits, small world play and marble runs, there’s something to suit all ages. Why not get them to choose one new ‘indoor’ toy and one ‘outdoor’ toy, so that you’ve got something on hand for whatever the weather may be – with free delivery and returns, as well as regular deals on discounted products, vidaXL are on hand to help all parents with keeping the holidays fun!
Get Everyone Involved
Get the whole family together and plan out things that you want to do. We’ve taken to creating a huge calendar of the weeks off, drawing it out on pieces of paper and giving each day a box to fill. Then we go through and add in the work days or the days that we have things planned in; seeing grandparents, dental appointments, any clubs that continue to run throughout the holidays. Take that and stick it up in full view of everyone in the house so that everyone knows exactly what’s happening on any day. This means not only do the children get involved and feel a level of control but it’s really easy to see which days you might want to fit in something else, which leads me nicely on to the next part…
Create A ‘Bucket List’
Bucket list, wish list, plan of attack… whatever you call it, this is going to be your saviour! From experience we’d suggest doing this at the same time as you do your calendar, when you’re all together. Get everyone to chip in what they would like to do this summer – see certain friends? Visit a specific place? Have a sleepover? You can make the ideas as big or as little as you like. We’d recommend limiting ‘big’ things to do to just one or two to take the pressure off. These could be visiting a certain paid activity or going somewhere special. Then fill it in with some things that you might not normally get to do in the week; camp in the garden or the lounge, have a picnic breakfast out, stay up and hunt for shooting stars. And finally throw in some educational bits; learn a new skill, come up with a dance routine, paint a picture, read X number of books etc. Take this and apply it to your family calendar if it’s things you need to book such as days out, bowling, trampoline parks etc (Top tip: don’t forget to stagger them so that . The rest? Stick a tick box next to them to tick off or write them on post-it notes and use them when you’re running out of ideas. Trust me, it’s a lifesaver when the kids start to mention boredom and your mind is blank!
Call On Friends
There’s safety in numbers, right? Time shared with others is often a lot easier, so now is the time to arrange play dates galore. Whether you’re going to someone else’s house or having them over at yours (great time to show off those new toys!), often it’s simpler to entertain larger groups that can play together. Struggling with childcare whilst you work? Why not speak with a friend and arrange to swap days with your children; you do one, they do one… or even as a group of three or four. It might be mayhem for one day but you’ll get multiple child-free days back on which to work and your children will think it’s the best thing ever. I’d call that a win, win – wouldn’t you?!
This post is written in collaboration with vidaXL, the online shop for a huge range of items, from furniture through to toys, all at great prices delivered directly to your door. Why not check out their selection today?