Recently I set myself the task to find a way to keep my kids entertained while at home.
We are in lockdown and I knew if I didn’t find a way to keep them entertained, the entire house would explode and we’d all be miserable and angry at one another.
There was no way I could go another day with just a quick walk in our neighbourhood, there HAD to be something I could do for my kids so they didn’t start climbing the roof.. lol.
I could feel the tension of panic set in when I realise we are only a week in and we were already bickering.
And let me tell you,
It’s not an easy fight with a toddler.
THEY DO NOT BACK DOWN.
Well.. they do eventually, but it’s quite a prolonged process, so you pick your battles wisely.
I knew if I kept giving them chocolate and putting another movie on it wasn’t going to be good for their little growing souls.
They needed stimulation too!
But I needed my sanity. I had shit to do.
I was googling ways to keep them occupied and I didn’t find much of anything that was actually helpful.
Yeah the suggested activities were AWESOME and my kids would have loved a lot of them - but they were going to require ALOT of my help, and hours of time that I didn’t have - I have to work too!
So anyways, I put some of the suggestions to the test and here is what worked amazing!!
- Make a cardboard cubby house and let them do the decorating! - so obviously I was looking for a quick fix and something to keep them occupied for a long time! The cardboard cubby house I seen on the internet was perfectly styled, and that’s not what I was after to keep my kids occupied. If I was trying for perfect - my kids would have to sit and watch ME do all the work while probably whinging to hurry up so they can play. So what I did was pulled out one of the large moving boxes we have stored away, and taped one side down, and one side I lifted the flaps and taped them into a triangle for the roof. I then cut a hole for the door, holes for windows and I let them do the rest of the work with some crayons/paint/glue/paper etc. They seriously spent a good hour decorating this house, and when they were done they played in it for hours and it was actually genius lol. Well I felt like it was genius anyways! I easily got 3+ hours of quiet this day.
- Build a masking tape car track. See picture - I made this car track for them to play cars with. Another genius idea I came accross! It’s the simple things in life isn’t it? A little tape to look like a road and they were set to play cars for quite a while!
- Making muddy puddles to jump in. So this is tricky - if you don’t have a backyard you will skip this one. But if you do - hear me out!! My kids LOVE to pop their gumboots on and jump in puddles. And I had this idea a few weeks ago to choose a spot in our backyard to soak down with water from the hose for 10 mins. Honestly- id like to give myself a pat on the back for this one! Water play is my kids FAVOURITE thing to do. And so what it’s cold? They don’t care. They still love it and they can always have a warm bath afterwards. So I created a muddy puddle and they had a ball. Hours of fun while I sat accross from them working and watching them at once. My 5 year old even said to me “this is the best day of my life” - all over a little muddy puddle lol. So if you have access to a backyard - highly recommend! Even after hours they still wanted to keep playing!
- Create a reward chart and get them to help around the house. Kids are easily bribed - you can tell them if they get 10 gold stars on their chart they get to choose what’s for dinner - or they get a freddo frog - or maybe they get to choose the next activity, whatever it may be it really doesn’t matter because if they think they are getting something out of it you bet they want to get those 10 gold stars! And at the end of the day your house will be spotless and the kids would have stay occupied all day while learning important life skills - it’s a win win, right? What jobs you set your kids would depend on their age, but for example I get them to both pick up any toys and rubbish, task my 2 year old with vacuuming (he loves pushing that things around lol), and my 5 year old with the dishes or something more complex. They both can wash walls, clean windows etc. give them a bucket of water, some towels and chuck some non-electronic toys in that bucket for them to “wash” - sooo many ideas and kids love to feel like they are apart of something!
- Make colourful or fun baths. So I actually found these bath water colouring tablets in my local supermarket which were amazing, but there’s things you can also find around your home. So with these tablets, you drop one in the bath and it changes the bath colour to red, or green, or orange, or blue etc. and it does something in their subconscious that makes them think the bath is sooo special. Or if you have a bath bomb hiding in your bathroom cabinet- let them have it! There’s even things you can buy online to make the bath a slime bath, or jelly bath! They LOVE that type of stuff! It bypasses 30mins-1 hour because they never want to hop out of their green slime bath lol.
Honestly, there are so many great ideas online for them like arts and crafts, science experiments etc. but if your looking for things you do not need to help much with to keep them occupied for a couple of hours - these are the tricks I found to work best!
Oh! And one more thing. If your feeling overwhelmed - everyone is screaming and unhappy and bored. Blast HAPPY music and just DANCE! Get your kids up to dance too. You will all be smiling and feeling a lot calmer and happier afterwards! It’s my FAVOURITE way to boost the mood and raise our vibes.
I hope you are all staying safe and well and haven’t hit insanity yet!
Sending so much love,
The team @ House of Vimm x