As a working mum I lead a busy life rushing from on thing to another. Including the various children’s activities my son does and family events we attend. However every so often I found ourselves with some unexpected downtime. Sometimes, when this happens it’s nice to just stop, breath and chill. Yet when you’ve a 2-year-old, that chill time can be limited and often it’s a lot less stressful for everyone involved if we actually do some sort of activity.
Knowing what to do can be a challenge, especially when it’s family time and we want to involved everyone and not just occupy my son. So I have put together a list of ten activities the whole family can get in on.
We are pretty big foodies in this house. So cooking together is something we definitely like to do. My son is now at an age where he too wants to get his sleeves rolled up and hands in. This is a great fun time and can encompass anything from preparing that evenings meal to baking cakes. We will find tasks he can do himself with our supervision, such as mixing items together in a bowl. We have a great little folding foot stool that he pulls out and put up next to the counter making him the right height to be able to reach things. Of course we are careful to keep an eye on him around hot items like the hob or oven and always make sure that sharp knives are out of reach.
2.Tend the Garden
If the weather is nice heading outside is always a must. In the spring months, it’s a great time to be activity outdoors for us. Whilst we will often let our son just run riot and entertain himself playing. He can quickly become bored or want more adult participation. So now we get him involved in helping with the upkeep of the garden. No it’s not manual labour, just little things that help us to teach him. It might be potting new plants with us or helping to water things. He even has a little lawn mower so he can push it alongside daddy when he cuts the grass. It’s great for making him feel useful and included. Helping us to educate him in the process.
3.Geo Cache walk
Whilst the rise of technology has been slated for keeping kids inactive we have found a way to us it to our family’s benefit and get us up and out and about. It’s like a high-tech treasure hunt, taking you to various interesting or beautiful places. There are over 2 million geocaches hidden around the world. To find them you just need a GPS or a smart phone. It’s a great away to spend the day outdoors and involved in the local nature. Simply look up geocaches in your area, enter the co-ordinates and off you go!
We are fortunate enough to live in a country with mediterranean climates at least 6 to 7 months of the year. We are also blessed by having a swimming pool in our back garden. However even in the winter months, we will still take our son swimming. To the local pools that are indoors and heated. Most leisure centres will offer times and rates for kids swimming. It’s a great way to wear the out and burn of some energy whilst also getting in exercise. It’s also a really lovely bonding experience as you teach your kids how to swim.
5.Go for a bike ride
Whether you live in the country or the city. There are bike routes particularly everywhere now days. I quick search online should produce several mapped routes if you want to know where your going. If you have a sense of adventure you can just wing it. If the kids are too little for their own bikes, get bike seats attached to the back of yours or you could buy a bike buggy and pop them in that. As the kids grow they will want to take their own bikes and this actually can become quite a family tradition.
Our son has a very creative side to him. So I know the minute I get the paints out it will consumer a good few hours. If it’s a wet and rainy day I get out the plastic matting and put it under the dinning table and make sure he is strapped into his booster seat. That way we don’t end up with little hand prints up the walls. If it’s good weather we will head outside and sit on the grass. I use child friendly paints that are designed for young children, as these are easy to clean up and pretty much was out of anything. We do a lot of finger painting but also have sponge shapes and sometimes make potato prints if we fancy changing it up a bit.
7.Have a kick about
You may not be a football lover, but kicking a ball about is something the whole family can get involved in. It quite often ends up with a lot of rolling about and laughter. With boys anything can be turned it a rough and tumble. If you don’t have any outdoor space, then get down to the local park of find an open patch of green to use. If you must do it inside, make sure to use a foam ball, at least that way you stand a chance of protecting things.
8.Build a fort
My son has just started to get into this one. It’s great for cosy evenings or rainy days when I use the sofa and dinning table to make the frame and drape over loads of blankets. I then take the cushions and pillows and pop them inside. Often with some battery operated fairy lights. He selects which of his cuddly toys can join us and he has great fun in and out on his own little adventure. We will cuddle up inside and play games or read stories. In the summer months we can head outside and make sure of the patio table of some trees and string to build the frame. It’s a great way to enjoy outdoors whilst escaping the hear of the summer.
9.Hit the beach
Every one loves a day at the seaside. Whether you like the sand or not. We’re lucky enough to live close the beach so for us. This is an easy 10 minutes and we are there. However if you aren’t so lucky, a day a the beach may need a little more planning. It’s a great activity for a half term break when you are looking to fill up entire days or even perhaps a short weekend stay. Either way kids love building sand castles and paddling in the sea. We have such a great time every time we go to the beach and all of us are happy about it.
10.Have a picnic
This one you can pretty much do anywhere. Even on your living room floor. It can make a meal time a little more exciting and gives you the chance to have excellent family time. ban technology. No TV’s, phones, tablets. Dig into easy to assemble picnic food and start a conversation.
What’s your favourite activity to get in some quality family time?