I started planning school holidays more effectively last year (I still don't understand parents who love school holidays by the way). But the kids weren't very involved. Everything was in my calendar and I shared the plans with them little by little, but they had no sense of ownership.
So, if you like to plan ahead, and also be a little creative and not spend a lot of money, this idea is for you: a
Here are the steps to follow:
1. On a piece of paper or the computer, create a list of ideas of things you would enjoy doing with your kids over the holidays. Include outdoor and indoor, free and not free. Also include people you would enjoy having a play date with. Write everything that goes through your head. For ideas, please scroll down to the bottom of this post or check this out.
I love brainstorming in cafes.
2. On another piece of paper or other Word document, make two columns - one for each week. Add 5 lines for each week, 1 line per working day (add weekends if your partner will be away or working on those days as well). I also separated each line into morning and afternoon. Start filling in the blanks with your ideas from your brainstorm list. Send messages to those you'd like to meet up with and add them to your table once they are confirmed.
3. Get excited about your plans and about how your kids are going to enjoy their holidays!
4. Get your bunting necessities together:
- black permanent marker
- 1 piece of paper per day to fill up (10 in my case)
- 1 little cello or zip lock bag per day (10 in my case)
- your plan for the two weeks
- a piece of string or ribbon (whatever you have on hand)
- a pack of mini pegs (2 dollar shop)
- a pack of felt stars or star stickers (2 dollar shop)
- cello tape
5. On each piece of paper, write the plan for the morning, and for the afternoon.
6. Then fold the paper in two (so that the contents stay secret), and write the date on the front.
7. Insert the folded paper, with an initialled star (this is to determine who will be the star of the day that day) into the little bag, close and set aside. Repeat for each day of the holidays you planned.
8. Secure your ribbon or string somewhere (fridge, wall, etc), and attach the little bags to it, in order or not if your kids are older, with the mini pegs.
Doesn't it look super cute? My kids are so excited each morning to discover what we'll be doing for that day. And of course, I stay as flexible as possible and adapt where necessary. There are not many squabbles about who goes first etc. because the Star of the Day is pre-decided.
And for the first time EVER, I'm enjoying the school holidays! I NEVER thought I'd say that. I don't love the holidays. And I do prefer Term time, but I'm not waking each morning with a sense of panic.
I have a plan. I feel empowered! If you want a look at what we're up to, scroll down to the bottom of this post.
Happy holidays Mums and Dads! Let's try and have some fun.
Kia Kaha! Be Strong!
Activity ideas I had this time:
- playdates (include names)
- chipmunks/junglerama/laughalots or other similar indoor playground
- zoo trip
- build lego
- treasure hunt
- water balloons
- build a fort
- visit a favourite cafe
- visit a pet shop
- make pancakes
- swimming pool
- discover a new playground
- ice cream outing
- library visit
What we are actually doing:
- Monday 18th: visit a favourite cafe and a pet shop; babysitting swap, reading/spelling
- Tuesday 19th: swimming pool playdate; quiet at home (incl. reading/spelling)
- Wednesday 20th: son in care, Mummy-daughter time; babysitting swap, reading/spelling
- Thursday 21st: kids in care while I work; playdate
- Friday 22nd: kids in care while I work
- Monday 25th: Junglerama playdate; quiet at home (make pancakes?)
- Tuesday 26th: playdate; quiet at home (incl. reading/spelling)
- Wednesday 27th: son in care, Mummy-daughter time; bake together, reading/spelling
- Thursday 28th: kids in care while I work; ice cream outing
- Friday 29th: kids in care while I work