Hey guys! I know it’s been a while since I posted a blog. Life gets crazy and I had to take some time off. (I also just felt too uninspired to write anything!) However, during my time away, I had to get creative with activities for my son. He was getting bored in between trips out of state, but I didn’t want to spend a ton of money to entertain him. So I started creating a list of free random stuff to do, and that’s how this blog was born! (I’ll update as I think of more!)
Check out the list below for fun and free activities to keep your little one busy!
(Be sure to tell me what you’d add to the list in the comments!)
1.Go to a story hour or project at your local library. Our library is hosting a “Cookies and Coloring” event for toddlers tonight! So I’ll be taking Jack to that with his cousin and aunties. Check your local library’s event calendar online!
2. Attend a free Home Depot kids workshop. Fun and free. Register online and find locations/times near you!
3. Explore a pet store. Let them explore freely, no cart or stroller! Ask them to name all the animals they see and teach them the ones they don’t know.
4. Walk around the seasonal decoration area at a hardware store or large grocery chain. Point out the colors and the different characters they’d like to see.
5. Volunteer to help a friend, family member, or elderly neighbor with their pet. Jack loves helping to take care of our mini zoo. If you don’t have pets of your own, see if someone would mind you relieving them of their pet parent duties and take your little one along.
6. Take a picnic to a botanical gardens. Fill your basket with their favorite foods and bring a comfy blanket. (Great photo opportunity too!) If your botanical garden doesn’t have free admission, any park will do just fine!
7. Create a mud kitchen. Gather old kitchen supplies and set them up outside and let your little one get messy!
8. Bake a simple recipe. Complicated recipes can get messy and stressful. Keep the baking fun by choosing simple things to make. Like 3 ingredient peanut butter cookies!
9. Go on a bug hunt. After finding pictures of insects (or items you can find in your backyard) get your safari gear (old box, shovel, anything to gather the creepy critters) and set out on your backyard adventure! Jack has a bug sucker and insect collecting kit from the Dollar Tree that seems to make him feel very professional!
10. Build a pillow fort. Once the castle or fort is built, read them their favorite stories (or have them “read” to you), sing all the repetitive children’s songs they love (even if they get stuck in your head), and watch a short tv show in your tent!
11. Create a scavenger hunt grocery trip. I have yet to do this with Jack, but I can’t wait! Cut out pictures of grocery store items (preferably the ones you actually need!) and let your toddler paste them on a piece of construction paper. Head to the store with list in hand and help them find the items. I’d suggest a smaller chain store over Wal-Mart or Publix (less space to cover and most likely less inventory to look through)!
12. Put on a show for the family or stuffed animals. Jackson loves singing with his ukulele (Bought at Five Below!) which he pronounces “You kuh lady”. If you don’t have instruments, pots and pans still seem popular with kiddos these days!
13. Cut up (or tear apart) grocery adds. This can be for the scavenger hunt or just for fun. Make sure they use safety scissors though!
14. Make a fairy garden. Find small pebbles and map out a little square area. Let your toddler fill it with things from the yard for their “little friends”.
15. Make houses out of graham crackers or gingerbread. Use peanut butter to hold the graham crackers together and decorate for your specific time of year!
16. Blow bubbles and see who can pop the most. Helps practice counting too!
17. Pop popcorn on the stove. This might be a little frightening to some children, but it’s super fun once they warm up to it! Jack loves when I let some of the popcorn pop out of the pot. Here’s a great blog to learn how!
18. Take a bubble bath. After the mud kitchen this might need to be your next activity!
19. Help them draw members of the family and hang them up on the wall. It will be fun to see what they come up with!
20. Wash plastic dishes in the sink. My son loves doing this. I can’t sympathize, but he gets a kick out of washing the dishes and acting like a grown up!
21. Paint a picture with items not meant for painting. Grab cotton balls, noodles, plastic spoons, cookie cutters, straws, or anything you don’t mind getting messy and set up a paint station. I always lay out craft paper for easy clean up!