Staying home a lot more than we used to has become the new reality. Which is always going to be challenging with young kids. And even in summer, especially in the UK, the weather can conspire to keep you indoors. So here are five tried-and-tested tips for making the most of staying in, whether you're at home, or away on holiday.
1. PLAN IT OUT
If you know you're not likely to get out for a whole day - or days - creating a timetable can help keep everyone's spirits up. Between mealtimes and naps, schedule puzzles and games as well as opportunities to get crafty, colouring and collaging. Maybe update the craft box with some tempting new additions - like Moulin Roty's brilliant Crane Ink Stamp Set, that will thrill any budding engineer, some paints from ace kids' brand Micador or the ever-popular Crayon Rocks.
2. MAKE SPACE
If they haven't already, let them build a den to call their own. Pl-ug tents and The Den Kit Co. are two brands perfect for this. Think of ways to make use of neglected indoor space - every nook has potential. A KIDLY insider tip: lay down yoga or play mats in your unloved hallways and play Cosmic Kids Yoga on Youtube. Thirty minutes of stretching, breathing and storytelling with your kids is great for the soul!
3. ROTATE THEIR TOYS
Ever heard the phrase ‘I have nothing to play with’? Yes, us too. 😬 Kids often have so many toys that they don’t get excited by them anymore. We are true believers in making fewer toys available at one time, then swapping them out for others in due course. One day, bring out the garage and cars - the next, move the kitchen and play food into a prime position for play. They’ll enjoy rediscovering all those things that have been forgotten about for ages.
4. NEW ADDITIONS
It's always good to consider investment in open-ended toys like Wobbel's inspiring and endlessly fun balance boards and Grimm’s gorgeous wooden creations, which are great for all ages. They're really worth every penny, and will fuel your child’s imagination for years on end. For kids who like their screen-time, we love real-world alternatives to gaming that are just as much fun, like Art Out Of The Box.
5. INTERACTIVE CLASSES
Lockdown saw the springing up of lots of great new resources for making the most of time at home that are still providing sterling service. Hartbeeps at Home is always a great source of inspo and entertainment. Loads of personal Trainers like Lauren Drinkwater and Little Gym are still streaming family exercise classes online and teachers are offering free lessons for all ages via Zoom. There are also tonnes of other exciting at-home classes listed on the Online Classes for kids Facebook group and www.clubhubuk.co.uk. Check them out - and have a great time staying in.