Keeping your kids entertained can become an expensive game and there are some wet, rainy days when you’ll start tearing out your hair in desperation if you hear any more cries of boredom! Here you’ll find 10 great ways to keep them busy on a budget:
#1 Bottle Bowling
Why pay to go bowling when you can create your very own game at home? If you have bottles waiting to be recycled then all you need is some paint, a tennis ball and around six bottles for a mini game or more if you have them. Paint the bottles white with red stripes on the necks, and you can even paint the tennis ball red to match. Simple, cheap and loads of indoor or outdoor fun!
#2 Dinosaur Serving Plate
Little boys will want their cookies served on nothing else after completing this crafty project. Most families have plastic dinosaur toys and it’s a great way to breathe life into old toys. Use a small melamine plate which you might already have or can pick up in a dollar store. You’ll also need some sandpaper, a small saw (adults had better do this bit) adhesive, lining paper and paint.
#3 No-Sew Mini Purse
It’s easy to get girly with this cheap and simple idea. Repurpose an old pair of jeans by cutting away the coin pocket and part of the waistband. All you need to do is make two holes just under the waistband to thread cord through. The fun part is decorating it which can be done with glitter, paint, buttons, fabric flowers or whatever you have lying around. A great way to design your own purse at hardly any cost whatsoever!
#4 Homemade Soap
A fun and practical idea which your kids will love using. This also makes a great budget gift idea and looks very cute when placed in a basket with some decorative additions. For a fresh, citrus soap all you need is 1.5 cups of goats milk base or shea butter, 4-6 drops of lemon essential oil and the dried zest of a few lemons. Find quick, easy steps online.
#5 Button Bowls
Funky and fun – your kids will love creating their masterpieces for the home. All you need for this activity is a balloon, a whole heap of buttons and some strong glue. Blow up the balloon, glue the buttons in any pattern you like onto the bottom half of the balloon. When it’s dry, all you need to do is pop the balloon and you have a pretty bowl! So simple but really effective and the kids will love it.
#6 Shower Curtain Ring Bracelets
Your little divas will have a blast making their own jewelry. All you need is to find some fabric scraps you may have lying around, some plastic shower curtain rings and a hot glue gun. They are super cheap to make and look so cute that all their friends will want them too.
#7 Cereal Box Mini Notebooks
Encourage your kids to start their own journal by letting them make their own adorable mini notebooks. The material required includes one cereal box for two notebooks, decorative paper, a ruler, scissors, a glue stick, needle and thread and a button. A perfect crafty activity for a wet afternoon and you’ll have something pretty at the end of it.
#8 Leaf Necklace
Help your little ones create their own nature-inspired jewelry. This is a straight forward method using clay and leaves - and all you need is some small leaves (which they will have fun collecting), polymer clay, a roller, jump ring, chain and optional gloss glaze. A handy idea if you have leftover clay.
#9 Straw Photo frame
If you don’t have small white frames lying around, then you can pick them for next to nothing at the dollar store. Most homes have straws, but if you don’t, you can also pick up decorative ones very cheaply. This is a great crafty idea and tons of fun; you can even use the finished piece as a gift. All you need is a photo frame (5”x7”), a hot glue gun, pretty paper straws and a pair of scissors.
#10 Lego Organiser
Most every home with kids will have Lego so this idea doesn’t have cost a dime! Your little people will adore this colourful, bright organiser for their pencils and rulers and may even encourage them to tidy up. Create one with a pattern or use random bricks, go baseless or use a Lego base board – let your imagine run wild!