I’m bored Mum! The cry goes up and you flinch at the onslaught. Every toy is on the floor, yet none of them are interesting. It’s raining again and no-one wants to go for a walk, so what do you do? Here are some thrifty and low cost ideas to help you survive half term. Some of them do require a little planning in advance, but it is worth it to save on costly trips out just because you can’t bear the moaning!
1. Plan an exciting trip out. Exciting doesn’t always have to be expensive but sometimes the kids want to go to places that cost money to get in. I have three kids and the costs mount up. However plan in advance and you can cut the cost. A friend and I are using Tesco Clubcard vouchers to go to Drusilla’s next week. They take up to 5 days to arrive so book in advance. Collect coupons from cereal packets when you see them too. They can also help cut the cost with offers that allow you to pay for a child and the adult goes free. Having one exciting day out booked can help when you need to spend the rest of the week more locally and frugally!
2. Get cooking. Again, slip a few things into your basket before half term and it can keep the kids busy. Cake mixes and ready to bake goods are super-easy to use even if you are a non-baker, and the kids will love the results. My lot like making jelly or fruit salad too. Wear old clothes, wash hands, tie hair back and be prepared for a messy kitchen. Try to stand back and leave as much up to the kids as possible, depending on their age and ability. My daughter is now very happy to make a family meal as a result! Follow the link for lots more ideas of what to cook with the kids.
3. Get crafty. If your kids love to craft a few fresh craft items bought in advance can keep them quiet for hours. Browse cheap arts and crafts supplies from The Works online. New stickers and paper need only cost a few pounds if you simply need to replenish stocks. Masking tape, paint and white glue is a good investment: collect cardboard boxes, bottles and pots for a few weeks before the holidays and challenge the kids to build to a theme. My boys made giant minecraft themed figures from boxes when they had a few friends over. There was a lot of glitter on the floor at the end, and they finished up with a light sabre battle using inners from wrapping paper tubes! Give the kids free rein with supplies like that and they can amuse themselves even on the rainiest afternoon.
4. Create a home cinema. Finally, when it’s time to wind down, bring out the popcorn and pop on a DVD or stream a film. Popcorn is easy to microwave and makes a low cost and healthy snack if you steer clear of ready made candy coated versions! Just ensure that you don’t have a microwave that’s older than a decade, because at that point, you’d need to get a new one, if you were to save energy. You can click here to know the best ones in town.
You might be able to record a film in advance so watch out for kid-friendly films over the next few days, then sit back, draw the curtains and surprise them with a home movie night. As an alternative, we’re starting this half term with a home disco – again, draw the curtains, download some tunes and you’re ready to party!
Find more ideas of what to do over half term here.
This post is in association with The Works