Wow! It’s been a tough few months for us all. Lockdown has affected so many people in so many different ways and it’s been especially hard for our kids. Being isolated from their friends and social circles, no familiarity and routine of school every day, no trips to the cinema, bowling, trampoline parks, shopping centres, theatres-the list goes on…
Things are slowly opening up and people are doing a great job of making things feel safe for us all but the truth is, even while things get back to some sort of normal, most kids are still not back at school, soon it’s the summer holiday anyway and lots of places remain closed.
My kids are going stir crazy – are yours?!!
I don’t know about you, but in my household screens feature far too heavily and the truth is, my kids are still bored. They need some other form of distraction. But what?! What can they do that will keep them occupied for just a little while every day but isn’t all about just staring mindlessly at a screen?
As you know, we’re all about Tweens & Teens here at Silhouette, so, I decided to do some research – google is a marvellous thing, and I came up with loads of ideas. Then I ran them past the kids and they looked at me as if I was some sort of alien. Clearly, my idea of fun is not quite the same as theirs! So, we brainstormed together and here are some of the ideas we came up with. We haven’t done them all but I reckon that by the end of the summer, we will have done most of them…
Hope these help over the next couple of months..
Keep safe everyone. Lots of love
So, here goes, in no particular order….
So, this is one we’ve done. A collection of teeny tiny beads from Amazon, some elastic wire and a small kit of clasps and rings – hours of fun and some quite cute bracelets, chokers and anklets are now being worn by ALL of us – the family, my daughters’ friends, their friends’ friends – you get the picture – I don’t have the patience, but my girls have really enjoyed it.
This one is so easy to create. Some strategically placed smelly candles, some soft music, your girls can wear their dressing gowns so it feels like a proper spa. Manicures and Pedicures are the easiest. A bucket of warm soapy water for the feet, a hand and foot scrub, some lovely lotion to massage in and finally a choice of nail polish colours. Now it’s time to offer refreshments. How about some ice cold water with some fruit thrown in, strawberries, lemons, some mint. Looks and tastes delicious.
And then, how about a lovely face mask? You don’t have to buy expensive face masks. Did you know, you can make your own from the contents of your fridge?! Here are a couple of links from Elle Magazine and Marie Claire with a few recipes..
If I’m honest, I’d probably buy a mask but it might be fun giving some of these a go. Always do a patch test before though just to make sure..
SMARTPHONE PHOTOGRAPHY COURSE
Kids are always taking photos now aren’t they? Today’s mobile phones have some amazing cameras so there’s no need to invest in some fancy camera to take really great photos. How about brushing up on some techniques for creating stand out images? There are some great online courses out there but a good place to start to see if it’s something of real interest before investing in a course, is Skillshare. Skill Share has a load of really good free content (not just for photography but loads of other skills too). Definitely worth a look.
Apparently, this guy’s You Tube Channel also has some great introductory videos with tips for smartphone photography. Another great starting point…
JAR OR PEBBLE PAINTING
If you’re anything like me, you have a drawer in your kitchen, just full of empty jars – I thought they’d be useful storage or something. Anyway I have loads. With some acrylic paint pens from Amazon (have you detected a theme here? Yes, we’re on first name terms with the Amazon delivery guy), you can make these storage jars pretty. Acrylic paint pens are great for all sorts of other surfaces too, not just glass. They work on pebbles, ceramics, wood, fabric, canvas – the world is your oyster! Hours of fun for those who have that creative streak.. For loads of other creative project ideas and for all the equipment you need, take a look at this Facebook page. Katy has some great craft kits to keep the kids busy…
LEARN A LANGUAGE
So this one came from my son. He’s started learning Italian during lockdown. If you’re good at languages, I can think of worse ways to spend your time than learning another language. Duo Lingo is a great free resource to get you started. Take a look here…
ONLINE ESCAPE ROOM
Who knew that these existed? We’ve all heard of physical escape rooms, but now, due to lockdown and all it’s limitations, some companies have created these escape rooms online so that you can play with just your household or on Zoom (or other video link) with others. Such a cool idea.. Here is just one of the websites that I found online.. We haven’t played yet but it’s definitely on the list…
So far, all of our ideas haven’t needed much movement right?!! We’re not a madly sporty family, so we’ve struggled with this one (especially me if I’m being totally honest!). Going for walks is the obvious one, more fun when the weather’s good but so far, (well until this week!) we’ve been blessed with the most decent weather I can remember in years! Teenagers aren’t all great with the walks though so there are some other options. Couch 2 5K will get them up and moving but it needs a bit of commitment. There are loads of online personal training videos on you tube too for all different levels. Or if you prefer a little bit of dance to keep you fit, try Zumba…. https://www.zumba.dance/ have loads of Virtual Zumba sessions or what about Just Dance https://justdancenow.com/? Download the app and compete with people from all around the world..
Not for everyone, definitely not for me, but my girls love a good jigsaw. 500-1000 pieces will keep them going for hours. Buy a roll up jigsaw mat and then when they’re not working on it, it can be out of the way! Alternatively, there are some great online jigsaws – they’re quite good fun and I’m really not a fan usually. Take a look at https://www.onlinejigsawpuzzles.net/. On some sites like http://www.jigzone.com/ you’re timed as you try and put the puzzle together. It definitely focuses the mind!
LEARN HOW TO CODE
I actually think I might do this one myself. I’m totally clueless when it comes to coding and it’s such an important skill to have even if we just master the basics, it can help going forward. It’s not the most dynamic of subjects but what you can achieve with it is mind blowing. Take a look at https://www.codecademy.com/ where you can learn the basics for free with interactive lessons and practice.
We are living through history. This time in our lives will be studied in schools. It is like living in a film script. Why not make a time capsule to document this time? You don’t need to bury it. Just pop it away in the loft or in the back of a cupboard and when you unearth it even in a few years time, this will all hopefully feel like a distant memory and feel even more unreal than it does today! Here are a couple of links to give you ideas on what to put into your time capsule