When you work at home, it’s easy to get caught up in the to-do list. There is always some kind of work to get done between business and family responsibilities. However, it’s important to stop and take a break to hang out with the family, especially if you have young kids that are home all day while you work. Special little play breaks sprinkled throughout the week will help keep the kids entertained and you happy. you’ll be amazed at the difference it will make in your work week if you set time aside just to play.
Here are 5 budget friendly playtime ideas your kids will love any time of year.
Regardless of weather pack up a lunch and head for the picnic blanket inside or out. Go on a imaginary adventure through the living room and back into the kitchen and under the table. Create a tent and have lunch together inside. It’s amazing what fun a sandwich and pretend exploring can inspire.
Movies make happiness
Early afternoon movies in the middle of the work week are less crowded and less expensive. I’ve found that AMC theaters have early show times at only $5 a ticket. In the summer they also offer special movie passes at discounted rates. If you’d rather stay home, make it a family movie night, grab the popcorn, make your own milk shakes and snuggle up together.
From forts in the living room to mud pies or finger painted masterpieces, kids are always ready for creating. Take this enthusiasm on an adventure to the craft store. We like to wander around the store for about an hour to see the fun project supplies and gather ideas. Then we usually pick up a new craft project to make at home. Hobby Lobby, Joann, Michaels and even Walmart are all great store choices to find craft supplies for all ages. You can make all kinds of fun projects in less than an hour if you plan ahead.
Playing games can foster sharing, creative thinking and a whole slew of other fantastic skills. You can grab a favorite board game, get outside and play a racing game or even make up a game together. Play time for kids is learning time, they just don’t know it, which is why it’s so much fun! Some of our favorite games include Memory (the entire family can play), Wii bowling and I Spy in the car.
Free time play
Sometimes just suggesting the idea of play time together can inspire an hour of fun. Start by setting an expectation that “we are going to play for an hour and then mom has to get back to work”. Ask your child what they want to play and go from there. You could end up having a tea party, building a LEGO spaceship or talking about a favorite book. It doesn’t matter as long as it’s time you spend together and you both have fun.
No matter how busy you think you are, take a moment and allow yourself to stop and play too… your kids will thank you for it!