More activity ideas

Hi! So here as promised are some more activity ideas for the kids. I’m not sure if anyone has found any of my ideas so far useful but if you have then here are some more for you!

So, without further ado. Let’s get straight to it!

Leaf print picture:

This activity is essentially two activities in one. Before Kory could print his leafs we had to collect some first so while out walking the dog, we collected lots of leaves.

Once Kory had collected his leafs, he brought them home and made a start on his picture.

To make your own leaf print picture you will need:

  • Leafs (obviously!)
  • Paper
  • Paints

And that’s it!

Here’s how to make your picture:

  • Choose your coloured paints and pour a little bit of each one onto a piece of paper
  • Press your leaf into the paint
  • Then, press your leaf down onto a separate piece of paper with the paint side down in order to make your leaf print
  • Repeat this until you are happy with your finished leaf print picture
  • Leave to dry
  • And that’s all there is to it!

If you’re not wanting to use paints and would prefer a less messy experience then here is an alternative way to make a leaf picture that me and Kory have done together in the past. (See link)

Next activity, biscuit decorating:

This activity is super easy for the kids and depending on their age they should be able to do it with very little help from you.

Here’s what you will need:

  • Biscuits
  • Chocolate (to melt)
  • Edible decorations

Here’s how to do it:

  • Set up everything that the kids will need for this activity (A plate with biscuits on, a bowl with decorations inside, a bowl for the melted chocolate and a spoon)
  • Melt the chocolate (This is the part you may have to do)
  • Make sure the chocolate isn’t too hot for your child
  • With the spoon, let them spread the melted chocolate onto the biscuit
  • Once all the biscuits have chocolate on, add chosen decorations
  • Leave to set or eat right away
  • Easy peasy!

DIY Dinosaur garden:

Kory LOVES the outdoors. He loves being outside and he loves playing in the garden so while the weather has been so nice, I wanted to find something for him to do outside.

This activity was a lot of fun for Kory. It was a little messy too but nothing that a bath later couldn’t fix! What I like about this activity is that it doesn’t have to be dinosaur themed, you could make lots of different gardens. It also didn’t cost very much for us to do either as we already had the pot, the dinosaur figures and the solar light. The only thing we needed to buy was the compost which cost just 99p!

If you’d like to make your own DIY themed garden pot, you will need:

  • Compost
  • Empty garden pot
  • Your chosen decorations
  • Solar light (optional)

Here’s how to do it:

  • Add the soil to your empty pot, filling to the top
  • Add your chosen decorations (which in our case was dinosaur figures)
  • Finish off by adding your solar light (This is totally optional, we just happened to have a spare one laying around)
  • And that’s pretty much it!

We’ve also, been on an outdoor scavenger hunt and ticked off a list of things we found while outside.

We have baked some cupcakes together. If you haven’t got a baking kit already at home there are lots of easy to follow recipes online.

Kory has also been practicing how to write his name.

So those are my activity ideas I thought I’d share with you. I hope you liked them! I might not be sharing as many posts like this one as often at the moment with it being half term but I will keep you updated on that.

As always, thank you for reading and please let me know what you think.

How are you?

From looking at my picture you will be able to tell that I’m sat outside in my pyjamas with a bottle of beer and a bluddy good book (I guess that means I’m doing okay! Depending which way you look at it anyway…) Today Kory played out in the garden which meant I was able to have some time to myself which was nice. So, i’ve spoke with you all previously about how i’m coping living in isolation but how are YOU?

These are crazy times we’re living in at the moment and it feels as if the world has gone mad, doesn’t it? I don’t know about you but most of the time I have no idea what day it is never mind what I should be doing with all the extra time we have on our hands.

When the schools had finished I tried to keep Kory has occupied as I could while also trying to give him some sort of education at home. While I may not be able to do as much or as well as his teachers might with him I was going to give it a good try anyway and it did seem like we had a good thing going for a while too. Well, for the first week or so. We’d established a routine of some sort and I was doing at least one school focused activity with him a day but some days were harder than others and on those days I probably let Kory play on his playstation for longer than I should have but do you know what? That’s okay. It’s okay if the day goes to plan and it’s also okay if it doesn’t.

Our kids have been affected by what’s happening around them too and I wasn’t trying to stress Kory out more by forcing him to sit down with a pen and paper but more on that later…

If you have kids, how have you found ‘homeschooling?’ Or is that something you’ve chose not to do?

I think either option is great. While I was trying to do at least one education based activity with Kory a day, I also accepted that I probably wasn’t going to be able to teach him what his teachers do and so instead I tried to make the activities more fun and relaxed for him. His school probably wouldn’t think of ‘biscuit decorating’ as educational but it was something.

It is now officially half term and Kory would have been off school over Easter anyway so I’ve not been making him do anything. I’ve been following his lead really. The weather has been lovely so we’ve made the most of that and played lots in the garden, we’ve also done some painting and quite a bit of baking too but that’s about it really!

How have you been keeping yourself and the kids busy lately?

I will be writing and sharing another blog post over the next few days that will include lots of different activity ideas on how you can keep the kids busy. I hope this helps!

Kory is really looking forward to Easter and so am I. We sort of have our own Easter traditions and I’m hoping that this will allow us to be able to forget about all the craziness that’s been happening all around us even if just for one day.

Are you and/or your kids looking forward to Easter? Do you have any of your own Easter traditions? I’d love to know!

Well, that’s all from me for now. I just wanted to pop in with you all to ask how you are doing since you all listen to me ranting on! Thanks for reading and I hope you’re all well.

Stay home, stay safe.

Kirsti, xo

How I’m really coping in isolation

I’m writing this blog post because I just felt that it was important for me to share with you all truthfully how I’m really coping in isolation as I haven’t really spoken about that. I’ve shared with you what activities me and Kory have been doing to keep him occupied during the lockdown and it may look like I have it all figured out but I really haven’t. Like the majority of us, I don’t know what I’m supposed to be doing from one day to the next. None of us have ever had to live in isolation before. The truth is I’m not coping as well as you may think I am with the situation at all. I have moments when I feel okay but then I remember what’s happening and it comes over me like a wave and suddenly I feel overwhelmed by it all.

I’ve had a couple of bad days recently. I know I’m not the only person in the world who has been affected by Covid-19 (obviously!) and the effect it’s had on everything around us. Words like ‘quarantine, lockdown and isolation’ have become the norm but just being at home, not being able to see my family or to go out with the kids has really affected my mental health.

On those days when I feel like my head is all over the place, going out for a walk fixes that, going to see my family can fix that but that isn’t an option right now. I’ve always struggled with anxiety and even depression but I feel like the circumstances we are all living in at the moment have heightened that. The thought of even going to the supermarket terrifies me. I’ve walked the dog with Kory just twice in the space of two weeks and although I was grateful for the fresh air and I know Kory was too, all I could think about the entire time was just getting him straight back home where I know he’s safe. I’m trying my best to hold it together because I don’t want Kory to sense that something is wrong and to worry about anything but that’s the part I’m finding really hard. Holding it together. Especially as the weeks go on. I know that I have to be thankful that we have our health and each other and I am, I think that’s why I worry so much because I don’t ever want anything happening to anyone I love.

I do feel pathetic even saying that I’m finding the situation we find ourselves in difficult at the moment when there are people out there working so hard on the frontline like all the people working for the NHS who are providing treatment to those who have been directly infected with Covid-19, doctors and nurses who have had to move out of their own family homes in order to protect their loved ones and all the key workers who have made sacrifices as well. And all I’ve been asked to do is stay home where it’s safe. I praise each and every one of them who are pushing on and providing services for the public during all of this uncertainty because I sure as hell would not be strong enough to do it.

But on the flip side, I am also loving all of the extra family time we are having. I think living in isolation like we are has made me realise how we were living life in such a rush before all this happened. Everything was to a time or a routine and you get caught up in doing everything that should be done as opposed to living more in the moment. My days mostly consisted of getting up, getting dressed, tidying the house, doing the school run, coming home, making tea and then going to bed. There wasn’t much time for anything else. Everything was to a schedule which I do like, and I will be glad when we get back to some sort of normality but I have liked not having to say to Kory as much ‘oh we’ll have to do that later, we’ll do that in a minute or you’ll just have to wait’ because in hindsight, we’ve alllll the time in the world.

Living in isolation has taught me to live more in the now and to not take anything for granted, to appreciate the little things in life like being able to pop round to see my Nan and grandad just because for they are the big things. But that doesn’t mean that I have to enjoy what’s happening right now or even pretend like I’m coping when I’m not. I’m sure no-one is happy about what’s happening right now and many of us are finding it difficult. So I just figured if I was open and honest about my struggles then it may encourage other people to be as well. It’s okay if you’re fed up, feeling sad, scared or lonely, even if we are all in agreement that our current living situations are necessary at the moment and what’s best for everyone.

So that’s how I’m really coping in isolation. I hope you’re all okay? I know we may not be able to be there for each other in person but I’ll always be here for anyone who needs it. Feel free to message me any time.

Look after yourselves and your loved ones, everything is gonna be okay.

Kirsti, xo

Activities to do with the kids whilst in isolation

Hi! I hope you’re all well? So here as promised are what activities me and Kory have been doing together whilst in isolation.

First up is our ‘Sunshine painting.’ We painted our Rainbow and displayed it in our window and now we’ve painted a sunshine to go with it. This activity is really easy to do and lots of fun for the kids.

All you need for this one is:

  • Paper
  • Yellow shaded paints
  • Pen

And here’s how to do it:

  • Simply get out all of your yellow shaded paints and let the kids go crazy on the paper.
  • Once dried, write some words of positivity on your picture. We chose the words ‘Be happy.’

Kory really enjoyed freely being able to be as creative as he liked with this one. He made his sunshine by mixing all of his different shades of yellow paint together and then by putting lots of yellow painted handprints on top of each other until he’d covered the paper with them. The only thing he asked me to do was to draw a smiley face on his picture and to write on it for him.

Next up, Kory did a couple of activity sheets that came in a magazine he had. (This was before his school had emailed over their learning pack for him.)

Kory did a few of these and because he was able to do them by himself it kept him busy for a while and meant I was able to sit down with a cup of tea!

If you don’t already have some pages like this available at home, there are lots of different ones that you can find online to print off. Obviously choose some that are tailored to your own child’s age and/or ability.

The next activity we did was we did a bit of reading together. Kory was really into the story so I managed to make an activity out of this one as well and this could be done with any story that your child likes.

We read ‘The very hungry caterpillar’ and after we’d finished reading the story Kory was keen to know more so we spoke about caterpillars and butterflies for a while and then we made our own together.

As I said earlier, this could be made suited for your child with any book that they particularly like and you could use anything you like to extend the activity.

We just used:

  • Scissors
  • Paper
  • Pens

To make a butterfly and for the caterpillar we just folded paper we’d cut out! But you could use whatever you like.

  • Read The Gruffalo? Paint a picture of The Gruffalo
  • Read The Rainbow Fish? Learn about fishes and draw your own Rainbow fish

We’ve also:

  • Made a den
  • Done some drawing
  • Got Kory involved with making dinner

The activity ideas are endless! We really don’t need to put ourselves under any pressure to be organised or to have an itinerary for the day. Kory is quite happy to spray the kitchen down with multi purpose cleaner! Just remember that we don’t need to be ‘perfect’ at this. Being stuck at home whilst trying to keep the kids engaged for days on end is something we’re all new at. We’ve never been in lockdown before! So don’t put yourself or your child under any unnecessary pressure. I’m sure your child is enjoying spending all this extra time with you no matter what it is that you do together.

Thanks for reading. I hope you liked this blog post and if you did please give it a like, or a comment and share it with your family and friends. It’s much appreciated!

Love,

Kirsti, xo

Lockdown week 1

So that’s week 1 of this lockdown done and dusted! Well done to us for getting through it! If like me you’re a parent and you’re trying to juggle taking care of the house, keeping the kids entertained (which doesn’t sound any different than my normal day to day life to be honest except in normal circumstances if the kids are driving me crazy then we can go out!) whilst also trying to remain calm yourself and trying to homeschool (I never thought that’s something I would have to try and figure out but here we are!) then pour yourself a glass of wine or whatever it is that you like to drink and give yourself a pat on the back because we got dis! Oh and when the kids go back to school treat their teacher to something nice because I’ve only been doing this for a week to just one child (my own!) and that’s been hard enough! How do they teach a whole class for pretty much a whole year and not lose their minds?! I can’t even get my own child to sit and listen to me! I feel like I owe Kory’s teachers an apology for only ever buying them coffee mugs and that sort of thing, they deserve an all inclusive holiday and not just a coffee mug but an unlimited supply of coffee because seriously, coffee is what has gotten me through this week. I can handle their being a toilet roll shortage but if their was a shortage of coffee I don’t know how I’d have ever coped!

So, I know I’ve been posting and sharing our isolation activities with you during the lockdown so i’m sorry if you was hoping to hear from me over the weekend too discussing how we’d kept ourselves busy during this time. I do hope if you have been stuck for ideas of your own that you’ve found my previous blog posts to be helpful but my reason for not posting any of our activities on here with you over the weekend was simply because we didn’t do any.

Kory wouldn’t have been in school on those days any way so I decided after almost a full week of doing a different daily activity with him that I wasn’t going to do any education based activities with him on these days and instead we just relaxed together. We just spent the weekend sat in our pjs, eating Nutella, watching movies, going on the iPad and playing on the playstation. And it was nice. Life has been craaazy lately, not just for us adults but for our kids as well, there’s been some big changes made for them too so it was nice for us both to just be able to forget about everything that’s going on for a while and to just enjoy each other’s company.

It’s crazy to think that we’ve been in lockdown for just over a whole week. I’m not sure if this time has passed by quickly or dragged but either way, we’ve made it and you have too! So be proud of yourself!

Everything is gonna be okay.

I promise I will be back tomorrow with a new blog post for you catching you up and sharing with you what activities me and Kory have been doing together since Monday. I hope this helps and just remember, although it may not feel like it because it feels like everyone is worlds apart… We’re all in this together and we have all got each other.

Stay safe and take care,

Kirsti, xo

Day 4 & 5 in isolation

Hi, it’s me again! Just popping in to let you all know what activities me and Kory have been doing to pass the time during the isolation period. I hope you’re all well.

Day 4 consisted of playing with play doh, making our own bird feeders and baking cookies.

Kory loves the outdoors and he loves being outdoors. At the moment as you will already know, everyone is confined to their own homes but we are blessed with a nice sized garden and we’ve been lucky enough to have some lovely weather too so at least he’s been able to play outside. Because of this, I wanted to do an outdoor themed activity with Kory and making our own bird feeders seemed perfect.

Here’s what you will need:

  • Pipe cleaner
  • Honey hoop type cereal

Here’s how to do it:

  • Simply thread your cereal onto the pipe cleaner
  • Once the pipe cleaner has been filled with cereal, fasten both ends of the pipe cleaner together in a knot to form a circle and to finish

And there you have it! You’re very own bird feeder!

Next up we did some baking! Nothing fancy – just a £1 cookie baking pack. Kory really enjoyed baking his own cookies but I think he enjoyed eating them even more! We do a lot of baking together as it’s an easy way to pass the time even when you’re not stuck in isolation!

Yesterday we made a wishing jar. The idea is that Kory adds wishes that he’d like to come true once everyone including us is free to leave their homes again.

He added wishes like:

  • Go to the beach
  • Buy a fun toy
  • Go back to school

It was a nice activity to do together, it’s also something that will be nice for us to keep but at the same time it was quite sad too, for me at least anyway. It made me realise how much I took for granted just everyday life before all of this happened. Like being able to take Kory to school, being able to just pop to the shops and having the luxury of being able to buy things that we need. I for one will surely feel different about life once things do go back to normal again. I will certainly appreciate the little things in life more for all of this happening has taught me that they are actually the big things. What has happened is truly sad but maybe it’s taught us a lesson we all needed to learn.

If you would like to make your own wishing jar, here is what you will need:

  • An empty jar
  • Paints
  • Paper
  • Pens

Here’s how to do it:

  • Paint your empty jar whatever colours you’d like
  • Leave to dry
  • Whilst drying, write down your wishes on a piece of paper
  • Cut out your wishes
  • Once the jar is dried, place your wishes inside

And that’s it!

We also:

  • Did some recycling
  • Played in the garden

That’s it from me for now. I do hope you’re enjoying reading these blog posts. If you decide to make any of the above, I’d love to know how they turn out! Once again, thanks for reading.

Remember to take care of yourselves,

Love,

Kirsti, xo

What we’ve been up to

I’m sorry I didn’t post on here yesterday as promised. I really wanted to share with you all yesterday’s activity but as you can imagine, being stuck in with two children to take care of and entertain didn’t leave me with much time to write anything at all! But today I’ve managed to spare a bit of time for myself, both kids are finally sleeping so I’m using this time to write this blog post.

Yesterday was a busy day for us and today has been too. Me and Kory have actually done quite a few different activities together so rather than just sharing the one with you, I thought I’d share a few instead. So here goes, I hope you like reading about what we’ve been up to and if you’re stuck for ideas of what to do I hope this gives you some inspiration.

Yesterday’s activities:

Yesterday we started the day by making a collage. This activity is really simple, very easy to do, lots of fun and doesn’t require a lot of materials either – you probably have most of them lying around your house somewhere already.

Here’s what you will need:

  • Large piece of paper
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • Pictures or things to stick down
  • Pens
  • Literally anything you can think of!

Here’s how to do it:

  • Print out or cut out pictures for your child
  • If your child is old enough, you could even let them cut the pictures out
  • Then, use glue to stick the pictures onto a large piece of paper
  • Once dried, let them decorate the collage however they’d like

After finishing his collage, I got Kory to try out the pepper experiment. If you haven’t seen this one already, it’s where the pepper represents the ‘germs’ and the experiment shows what happens when we wash our hands.

Here’s what you will need:

  • Bowl
  • Water
  • Pepper
  • Hand wash

Here’s how to do it:

  • Fill a bowl with water
  • Add pepper to bowl
  • Get your child to dip their finger in
  • Lift out their finger, show them the ‘dirt’ on their finger
  • Put a blob of hand wash on the tip of their finger
  • Get them to stick their finger back into the bowl of water and pepper
  • Watch as the pepper moves away from their finger almost by magic!

This experiment is a great way to demonstrate how germs work to your child and an even better way to get them to wash their hands!

Kory also did some:

  • Cutting out
  • Colouring
  • Playing with toys
  • Helping with housework

Today’s activities:

Whilst we may be on lockdown and unable to leave our homes, everyone is allowed to leave the house just once a day for a walk or to exercise as long as you only go with the people from your household and don’t meet up with other people. We had some lovely weather today so we decided to take our dog, Harley, for a walk. I made sure we went nice and early to avoid bumping into other people. It was really quiet and we had the whole field to ourselves! It was the first time we’d left the house in days, Kory and Kora both got some fresh air and Harley was happy he got to go for a run!

Once we got back home, I got the chalks out for Kory and we did some chalk drawing in the garden. It kept Kory occupied for ages and he got really creative with it too!

Here’s what you will need:

  • Just chalk for this one!

Here’s how to do it:

  • Join in or leave them to it!

Although we have been stuck at home, we definitely had fun in the sun and made the most of the nice weather today.

Kory also did some:

  • Bubble blowing
  • Colouring pages outside in the sun
  • Water play
  • Trampolining
  • Looking for bugs

So, thank you for reading my blog post on what we’ve been up to. I hope you’re all doing okay during this isolation period.

Lots of love,

Kirsti, xo

Rainbow painting

We’ve all been advised to stay home and practice social distancing due to Covid-19, so I have been putting together lots of ideas for me and Kory that we can do whilst we’ll be spending all our time at home for at least the next few weeks. Not just to fight boredom but to also give him some sort of education with the schools now being shut too for who knows long!

We’re all in the same boat right now and it sucks but it is so important that we follow the advice we’ve been given and socially distance ourselves if we want to protect people and to get things back to how they were before. I’m trying not to see it as being ‘stuck at home’ but as a way to spend more time with Kory doing activities that we otherwise may not have had the time to do and that’s helped. A few weeks ago, before this nightmare began. How many of you would have loved the opportunity to stay home and have all the time in the world to do the things you’d like?

The first thing I did was I sorted a drawer for Kory just with different activities inside; work sheets, craft stuff and that sort of thing. The next thing I did was I made a list of different activities we can do. Pinterest is a great place to find lots of ideas. Here’s mine if you’d like to have a look: www.pinterest.com/lifeasthelonsdales I’ve pinned lots of a different ideas and even have a board called ‘For the Kids.’ Which has come in very useful during all of this!

Continue reading “Rainbow painting”

Good days and bad days

When you’re a parent, there will be good days and bad days. Fact. Days when you have to shout more than you’d like to, days that make you question yourself as a parent and days that leave you feeling like utter crap. But in saying that, there’s also those days that you don’t want to end, days when you’ve genuinely had fun with the kids and days when you go to bed feeling like a rockstar. For me, realising this made it a lot easier for me to accept that not every day is going to run smoothly or even be enjoyable and that that’s okay, and in doing so, I allowed myself to cut me some slack.

For instance, yesterday was a bad day but today has been a good day. Not every day can be a good day, I wish it could but it just can’t, can it? Otherwise we wouldn’t have ‘good days’ would we, without bad days to shine light on the good we’d just have… days, I suppose? When we’ve had what I would refer to as a ‘bad day,’ it’s usually a day when I’ve had to lose my sh!t with the threenager to get him to listen or like yesterday, a day when out of nowhere he just decided to throw the tantrum of all tantrums. A day when even though I did nothing wrong (I wasn’t the one throwing a giant wobbler for no reason!) I end the day going to bed feeling miserable and guilty.

Not fun.

And to be honest, I’d had enough of feeling that way. I’ve always been really tough on myself when it comes to parenting right from day one, always doubting myself over the slightest of things and I can admit that but it was starting to make me feel exhausted. Both physically and mentally. I’d had enough of crying to myself in bed at the end of every sh!t day.

God, I sound pathetic.

So last night I didn’t do that. Instead I had a takeaway, watched a movie and drank some fruit cider. Friday night is usually mine and Kory’s takeaway night but because he’d been a turd yesterday I made him his tea and once he’d gone to bed I ordered a takeaway but for myself. I’m not gonna lie, I did start to feel guilty when I was eating my cheesy chips (Kory’s favourite) but then I got the urge to slap myself and reminded myself that having a takeaway was a treat. One that yesterday, he didn’t deserve.

Being a parent is tough, it is without a doubt the hardest thing I have ever done but I can’t keep giving myself a hard time. I just have to keep reminding myself, there will be good days and bad days. I don’t know what tomorrow has in store for us, we can only see but one thing is for sure, I won’t be punishing myself at the end of the day.

Just remember that at the end of every day no matter how sh!t it’s been there is always a new day tomorrow… I can’t promise you that it will be a good one but it’s a new day nevertheless and there will always be tomorrow.

‘You’re their parent not their friend.’

I have heard, read and seen this be said so many times to other parents, mainly from other parents and while I can see where they are coming from and what they’re trying to say. My children honestly are my best friends. They’re my very best friends and sometimes my only friends! And I can’t help but wonder, Is that such a bad thing? I don’t think so.

Don’t get me wrong, while I will always be their parent first and foremost and of course as their parent it is my job to teach them right from wrong, discipline and how to be good people. I think it’s also my job to make them feel safe and let them feel like they can come to me about absolutely anything. I think I can manage doing both and I think all of those things are equally as important as each other.

Growing up I was always close with my mum and I can’t ever imagine my children not being that way with me. I want that closeness and despite what other people think, I think that’s healthy and good for children to have that. If my children can’t come to me with their problems then who can they come to? I hate the thought of them ever feeling like they wouldn’t be able to talk to me, their mum. I would imagine not being able to confide in your parents can make you feel very lonely and I don’t want that for my kids. I am the one person they should be able to come to about anything no matter what it is without feeling like they’re gonna be judged.

I think being open with your children is so important and how better to do that than to show them love and have a good relationship with them by forming a friendship. I am so proud to say that me and my kids do have very good relationships. Especially me and Kory with Kora only being 6 months old but I need those kids as much as they need me. We are so close and I wouldn’t change that for the world.

Ive made many mistakes as a parent but I don’t think being friends with my kids is one of them.