Making sure the kids are amused during the holidays can be a challenge at the best of times, but it’s especially tough during winter. Indoor activities often cost a fortune. So, here are some easy and inexpensive ideas.
1 Themed days
Choose a favourite theme, such as fairies or pirates. Dress up, eat appropriate food and play suitable games.
2 Ice biscuits
Ice plain biscuits and decorate with hundreds and thousands or silver balls. Or get creative with your own ideas.
3 Photo montages
Get prints of your favourite photos, buy a large picture frame and make up a photo montage. You can stick to particular themes, such as holidays, friends, school days, etc, and add mementoes like boarding passes, tickets to events or maps.
4 Build a fort
Using a table, chairs, sofas, a clothes horse, blankets, pillows and sheets, maroon the kids inside with goodie bags of books, games, drawing pads and snacks.
5 Plant a herb garden
If you don’t have a garden, or there’s no free space, use pots – herbs grow well in pots. Yummy ones include basil, thyme, mint and sage.
6 Make your own candles
This one requires close adult supervision. You can buy a candle-making kit, or melt down the remains of used candles in an old saucepan (you’ll need to buy a wick). Put them in an old teacup and saucer.
7 Sock puppets
Use odd socks to make a range of creatures. They can have buttons for eyes, wool for hair, and hats made out of old yoghurt cartons. When you’ve finished making them, put on a show.
8 Design your own board game
Come up with a theme, such as pirates or a favourite TV show or performer, and draw up a “pathway” of squares on a piece of cardboard. Write instructions such as, “Your ship has been boarded by pirates, miss a turn.” Or make the person who lands on that square do a challenge, such as, “Do five star jumps” or “Sing the first verse and chorus of any Justin Bieber song.”