During times like this, when worry can quickly turn to panic, it’s critical to find community. In the coming weeks or months, that might mean we rely even more on our virtual networks, like the mom groups so many of us already depend on. We want you to know that we’re here for you, whether on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, email, or right here on our blog.
We also want you to know that we’re right there with you, doing our best to protect our families and the vulnerable in our communities while worrying about a lot of things, including how to fill each day. For many of us, schools are closed or soon will be; typical places we take our babies and toddlers, like the library or children’s museum, may also be off-limits. Many of us are practicing social distancing, and some are even in quarantine -- by the time you read this, even more restrictions might be in place. It’s a lot for anyone to handle, and it’s especially a lot for moms who are already working their hardest.
Since Kindred Bravely is comprised of mostly work-from-home moms, we know a thing or two about how to keep kids busy. Even still, we’re all a bit concerned about having to work while the kids are home, so we compiled some of our favorite activities to give you (and all of us!) a few more ideas to fill the time -- and maybe even make some great memories.
Please comment below with your favorite ideas so we can build up our list of mom-approved activities. As physically separated as we all are, let’s come together to make this just a bit easier.
Arts and Crafts
- Make collages
- Paint (even rocks and sticks!)
- Put a large piece of paper on the wall (we used the back side of a roll of wrapping paper) and let your kids color/write on the walls
- Grab window-specific markers and let them go crazy on a window or sliding door
- McHarper Manor will be offering free art tutorials every day.
- Make jewelry with pipe cleaners and beads
- Make playdough, slime, or oobleck (cornstarch and water)
- Clean out your closet and let your kids play dress up
- Cook, bake, or experiment in the kitchen
- Recruit your kids to help clean with kid-safe wipes
- Let your kids wash dishes (it's a little messy, beware!) or clean using the crevice tool on the vacuum (they love to do the baseboards and under cabinets)
Other Indoor Activities
- Play Uno, Go-fish, Chess, Connect 4... any board games your kiddos are into
- Set up a tent inside so your kids have a special place just for them
- Grab toilet paper and paper towel rolls, tape them to the wall like pipes, and drop pom poms into them. If you don't have any TP/paper towel rolls lying around, cut up construction paper and tape it to a surface. You can also do it on a table to make bridges for toy cars.
- Make car tracks or hopscotch on the floor with painter's tape.
- Freeze water in a bowl/container (add plastic dinos or figures too if you want), then take it out, pour salt on it, and watch the melting pattern. You can also add drops of food coloring in the crevices to make it even more interesting.
- Play with water beads! The clear ones are the best because they become COMPLETELY invisible in water.
- Fill the bath up more than usual, get in your swimsuits, and make it a pool party (never leave the kids unattended, of course!).
- Have a dance party! Put together a playlist of your family’s favorite songs and dance it out. You can even make a fun video to share with your friends. If your kiddos are older, you can try to teach them simple dances.
- Create sensory bowls: Fill a bowl with uncooked macaroni or rice, and hide small toys or items for kids to find. If anything spills out, have them pick up each piece one by one and put it back in the bowl. When they’re done playing, put everything in a big Ziploc and reuse it another day.
- Create calming tubes: Get tubes like this or recycle another container. Add hot water, a bottle of glitter glue, shake it up to mix everything together, and hot glue the lid on.
- Create a hide & seek jar: Fill a jar or tube with the same things you’d put in a sensory bowl, but instead of digging in a bowl, kiddos have to twist and turn the jar until they can see a specific item inside it.
- Puddle jumping
- Worm rescue -- finding worms in puddles and carrying them to soil
- Gardening, planting seeds
- Painting the sidewalk with water
It can be hard to find silver linings in times like this, but we're trying to be grateful when we can: no rushing out the door, no battles over getting out of pajamas, time to have our kids help us cook, which can take too long on a typical school night. We send you fortitude, love, and health -- and a reminder to take care of yourself too. Please add your ideas below, and know that we’re here for you.