At the time of writing, the UK is still under strict lockdown rules, as are many other countries around the world. And understandably, more and more of us are looking for the best ways to pass the time at home, especially if we’ve got children who are veritable bundles of energy. We’ve already talked about how tackling your decking project is a great individual project to keep you busy right now, but how can you keep the family entertained too, and spend some quality time together without it all descending into madness? Well, we’ve got one or two ideas for you there. Seven, actually.
It’s not the most imaginative idea, but we might as well start with the obvious ones. If you’ve got a football to hand, it’s a great one to get the kids running about (and hopefully exhausted by the end of it). You don’t have to worry about goalposts, improvised or otherwise, it’s just to just have a quick kick about. Nobody has to be Ronaldo, and it’s just as much about spending time together as it is about practising your football skills. Same with any games of Frisbee, if that’s your preference.
In fact, it’s probably better if anything to keep it relatively low key – no power volleys or anything like that – as going to fetch errant balls probably doesn’t count as ‘essential travel’!
Yes, we know that we’re well past Easter now, but that’s the thing about a national lockdown – Easter eggs haven’t sold all that well recently. In fact, plenty are now going for discount rates in shops, so it might not be a bad idea to pick up a few next time you’re doing your run for essentials. It’s not compulsory of course – if you’re not a big fan of Easter eggs, or don’t have any in the house, it’s easy enough to find substitutes you can squirrel away around the house or garden instead. And if you’re working from home (as many of us are), you might find it’s the perfect thing to keep your children busy for a while!
A popular variation on the traditional scavenger hunt. Since our gardens are the greenest spaces we can enjoy with impunity for the foreseeable, it’s a great time to learn exactly what creatures live there. You can send kids out armed with pen and paper to do some quick drawings, or if they’re old enough, a camera of their own to record what they find. You can award points – or even treats – for the most interesting finds, or the best drawings or photographs.
Before you send them out to seek their fortunes though, it’s worth setting a few ground rules. The most important of them obviously being – respect all life in the garden. That means observing with eyes, not hands! (Hopefully they won’t need to be told about bringing animals or creepy-crawlies into the house, but you might want to reiterate that one, too.)
You can get a little crafty with this painting stones, and allow the kids to express their creativity! It’s also a great one to get them busy with outside if you’re busying yourself with other DIY or outdoor tasks, like building your decking. Alternatively, you can combine it with the scavenger hunt we mentioned above to have them sketch elements of nature that interest them – whether that’s birds, bugs or plantlife.
If you can’t go and explore the natural world outside your home, you might be able to bring some of the natural world back to you instead. Container gardening is an easy project to get the kids involved, since all you need is something that can hold soil, with a few small holes at the bottom. You can let the children pick their own plants -it’s a good way of keeping them invested, and keeps them coming back to the project over time. Or, you can build homemade feeders for birds or squirrels, which is a handy way to use up any spare wood you might have over at the end of your decking project.
We’ve already previously discussed a few ideas on how you can decorate your decking yourself, but since you’re all together it’s never a bad idea to get the whole family involved, too. It’s a great bonding activity, and ensures the final space will be a comfortable one that you can all enjoy together. What’s more, it’s another great opportunity for you all to express your creativity when it comes to furniture, lighting and similar elements, so you can really think outside of the box. You might be surprised at some of the ideas they come up with!
Here at Savoy Timber, we stock a wide range of things to help you there – if you’re looking to take the effort out of constructing your decking this spring, we have a range of easy fit timber decking kits that are perfect for the job!