Some ideas for the school holidays

Although Tom and I don’t have kids it’s always really clear when it’s school holiday time because:

1. The streets of Wellington become cluttered with under-dressed tweens, and
2. The level of parental bitching and moaning on Twitter and Facebook increases ten-fold.

So here’s some ideas for what to do with kids in the school holidays…

Ignore them aka ‘making your own fun’
The top-notch approach used by my Mum when we were kids. We merrily entertained ourselves for most of the holidays by building tree-huts, reading books, running around and punching each other etc. And the answer to the gripe from the kids that “I’m boooooored” is “only boring people get bored.”

Make giant pancakes
Once each holidays we would invite all our friends around and Mum would make pancakes as big as the pan. It was epic and the highlight of every holiday.

Do some baking or cooking
Kids need to learn to bake and cook and the school holidays means there’s heaps more time to patiently help them. If you pick something with several stages then it will take longer meaning they’re entertained for longer. When we were kids we made gingerbread men, crab apple jelly and Easter eggs with our friends, which seemed to take all day. Cupcakes would be a great activity too because you have to cook them and then ice them. 

Click image for source

Take photos of your neighbourhood
Get inspired by Virginia’s blog – and go for a walk or adventure where your kids get to take photos. Then come home and look for a match for them on Digital NZ.

Make money
Get them to clean out their wardrobe/toys/books, photograph them and list them on Trade Me. If you start now then their auctions will close before the end of the holidays. That means you get them to sort their stuff out, they learn selling skills and get a whole lot of money for a blow-out spending trip in town to buy new stuff.

If you have stairs in your house…
Invite the cousins round, get an old mattress and ride it down the stairs.

Visit the library
For books, to find out what activities they have or both. You can also get DVDs at the library for much cheaper than other places.

Have a picnic in a really wild or crazy place
Bundle up warm and head to a wild and crazy place for a picnic. You can either picnic in the car or let the kids round around screaming until they’re completely stuffed. Here’s a good location.

Build a tree hut
Let them saw and hammer away until one of them cries or they build a tree house, whichever happens first.

Make a kite
Build a kite out of brown paper, sticks and string and fly it at the local park.

Click image for source

8 Responses to Some ideas for the school holidays

  1. Dee says:
    (i really hope this goes viral)

  2. Rose says:

    I used to love riding cushions down the stairs at your place. Such fun! The other one you forgot to mention is sending them off the Grandma and Grandads place for at least a week. Win win for all concerned.

    • tomandemma says:

      I could have mentioned that one then linked to that epic Facebook post about what we all got told off about at Grandma and Grandad’s house. Spotlight was always a good game too.

  3. Rachel says:

    You do have school holiday experience, or have you erased the Discovery Centres at Te Papa from your memory? I have one to add, having just returned from there: do NOT take your children to the supermarket with you, for your own sanity and that of others.

    • tomandemma says:

      I’ve well and truly erased all that from my memory. And when I think of that time it’s really the worst school holidays experience ever – dealing with other people’s boring, bored children with dead eyes.

  4. Jeannie says:

    Great memories Em. I could also add .. Finding the overdue Library books and trying to sneak them back. Making Hobo stoves, and wee fires in the trees ,and making damper that always seemed to cook so it was burnt on the outside and raw on the inside ! The more kids and cousins we had around the merrier ! Mum x

  5. amanda joblin says:

    Love this Emma, especially the beautiful dog on the couch!
    My lucky girl is going to do a cool craft lesson at the wonderful Make Cafe here in Chch, (her mother, aka me,, can not teach her anything sadly). She is also filling in the holidays with some of your above suggestions!

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