Rain, rain and more rain… I think it’s safe to say we’ve had enough for one year already! With the fallspring we’ve had, you can bet I’ve tried out my fair share of indoor activities with the little ones! Being a resourceful lass and a former camp counsellor, and having many babysitters—each one amazing in her own right—I have come up with five perfect indoor activities that are not watching Netflix and eating popcorn, my go-to rainy-day activity. #KnowsEveryPawPatrolEpisodeByHeart!
Warning: Rainy days not mandatory; you can do these activities whenever you like!
1. Make a bird feeder
I don’t know about you, but I really thought making a bird feeder would be hard work. But that was before I got my hands on my friend Vanessa’s magic recipe. She makes them often with her own kids. It’s really nice watching the birds come dig in!
- 1 empty toilet paper roll
- 1 teaspoon of peanut butter
- 2 teaspoons of ground bird seed (sunflower, flax, etc.)
Get to work!
Slather the roll with peanut butter and run a piece of string through the roll, tying the ends together . And lick your fingers, of course!
Pour the seed mix into a dish, place the roll in the mix and, with the help of the string, roll it until the peanut butter is covered with seeds.
There you have it! All that’s left to do is hang it from a branch.
2. Paint your clothes
As I said earlier, I have the best babysitters! One day, one of them showed up with containers of fabric paint so she could paint with my oldest daughter. The end result: not exactly a work of art, but something that she proudly puts on the second it’s out of the wash. (Be sure to use old shirts!) Another option could be to make stencils out of cardboard by cutting it into shapes such as flowers, stars, hearts and so on. Just dip a small sponge into the fabric paint, which can be found at any crafts store, and you’re good to go.
3. Make rock candy
I’ve always wondered how that multicoloured hard candy is made. It’s actually super easy—and mouth-watering—and makes for something different to do!
- warm/hot water
- lots of sugar
- food colouring
- a wooden chopstick or skewer with the pointed ends cut off (to prevent injuries)
Get to work!
Saturate the hot water with sugar and pour the mixture into small Mason jars. Add different colours of food colouring to each jar and dip the stick into one of the jars. The sugar should slowly begin to form clusters around the stick. The more daring of the bunch may even try layering different colours. Unless you happen to sneak in one too many nibbles in the process, your only limit is your imagination.
4. Create moon sand
On my last trip to the moon (kidding!)… Moon sand is one of a parent’s best-kept secrets. You know, that dense sand that looks a bit like Play-Doh but clumpier? It is extremely easy to make and provides hours of fun! Plus, if you put it on a baking sheet, you’ll have almost no clean-up to do afterward!
- 4 cups of flour
- ½ cup of mineral oil
Get to work!
Mix the two ingredients and then pour the mixture into as many containers as there are children. Add dinosaurs or other figurines, use cups or cookie-cutters of all shapes and sizes to make shapes, and watch the time fly as the rain falls outside.
5. Organize a treasure hunt
Who says treasure hunts are only for Easter? Not me, anyway! What I like to do is take one edible treat and a few little goodies I’ve picked up here and there and hide them around the house, and then rack my brain coming up with clues tailored to my kids’ age level. You can even use this to help get the kids to take their nap: “Go to sleep and you’ll wake up to a treasure hunt!”
Need ideas for hiding clues?
Take a few plastic bottles of various sizes and hide the clues inside them on rolled pieces of paper. This can put a “letter in a bottle” spin on your treasure hunt. Or, why not reuse your moon sand to hide clues in and let the kids play pretend archeologists!