So lockdown was announced after it seemed a large quantity of the British population couldn’t do as politely requested and stay at home. Instead we have now been told that we are to stay in our properties with the exception of going out for essentials when necessary, and an hours exercise each day.
As it happens in our house, we have pretty much been doing just that since Isla had chickenpox three weeks ago (Dan is still going out to work as he is classed at NHS support – makes sense making sure all the machines and tables are working). Needless to say, it feels like we have been restricted for an eternity all ready. We have however found some activities that definitely break up the day and help pass the time:
- Baking – Isla’s absolute FAVOURITE of all the things we have done. She loves to make and decorate cupcakes! It’s super simple, really inexpensive and teaches the little ones a bit of patience while they wait for the goods to bake and cool. We generally make up a simple cake mix that will do 12 cupcakes – 4oz Marg/Butter, 4oz Sugar, 4oz Self-raising Flour, 2 eggs, 1tsp vanilla flavouring, milk (or variant) to get the batter to the right consistency. You can even just chuck it all in a bowl at once and give it a good mix. Spoon into cupcake cases and bake at about 170C for 15 minutes. Check a scewer comes out clean and your done. Allow to cool and decorate with simple water or butter icing (icing sugar and very little water or icing sugar and butter to taste) and whatever sprinkles, chocolate etc you might have kicking around.
- Garden time – we got all of the garden toys out of the garage, including the sand pit and this makes for some very easy entertainment for the little one. And it allows Mam and Dad the chance of a quiet cuppa.
- Board games – ok, Isla is generally a little young to understand the rules to a lot of games HOWEVER if you can allow yourself to let your little people makes there own rules up and just let loose, it’s a good hour of entertainment.
- Painting and drawing – get out the colouring books, paper and colouring stuff, print off some pictures for free from Google, and off you go. Nice thing is, if you as a parent enjoy art then you can actually get some time to relax too.
- Jigsaws – We have some normal and some that have maths puzzles on them. Either way the concentration required for this one provides some peace.
- Crafts – similar to drawing and painting, set it up and revert to childhood. There’s some great kits you can get your hands on but you can just use empty boxes, toilet roll tubes and whatever you have at home already.
- Reading – Isla loves a good book. She enjoys having us read to her but she also enjoys “reading” to her little brother where she looks at the pages and makes up her own story. It’s super cute.
- Facebook LIVE Classes – toddler groups such as Captain Fantastic and Tumble Tots are providing free classes at certain times each day.
- Chores – Got jobs to do around the house? Give the little one something to do too – Isla loves to clean so I tend to give her a cloth to go round with when I am cleaning the kitchen or dusting.
- Lego – I know that most people cringe at the sound of the Lego box being tipped over BUT it does provide a decent period of entertainment. You’ll probably find that either you or your other half can get fairly taken away with it too; remember to let the kids have fun!
For the Adults:
- Video Calls – call friends and family via one of the video call options. It’s an easy way to see people when we can’t actually be with them. Zoom, WhatsApp, and FaceTime are just a few options.
- Outdoor time – doing up or tidying the garden, tending to your plants, spending evenings by the firepit, get outside if you can and relax.
- Start a blog – document how you get through each day, see what you get up to and you never know who you might inspire. You can set up a blog for free on a platform such at WordPress or Wix.
- Pick up a hobby – what have you always wanted to learn but never had the chance to? Now is the time.
- Clean and organise your home – this might not be one for everyone but there are thousands of people who find cleaning and it’s results incredibly relaxing and fulfilling. When I get the chance I am one of those people though with kids it doesn’t last for long!
- Have a date night – cook a nice dinner, have a bottle of wine, turn the TV OFF and talk. Remember the old times, when you first got together and some of the best memories you have made.
- Start a gratitude log – there are so many things to be thankful for and I think that many people are starting to see this now. Write down the things that you are grateful for so you can look back at them on more difficult days.
- Get fit – if you’re generally well and there’s no medical reason not to, get yourself active. It kills the boredom and make you feel a million times better. There are all kinds of free workouts available via Facebook or YouTube, just search and see what you fancy.
These are just some of the things that we have found, I’m sure there are lots of other things people are doing and I would love to hear from you! Let me know in the comments.
Take care, stay home and look after each other.
Lots of love, Holly Xx