Holidays are here again; two weeks to fill with fun for the children without spending tons of cash. We are going on our Sun caravan holiday for the second week of the holidays which, added to stopovers at Granny and Grampy’s both ways, means we only really have a week to fill. So here are some of the activities we have planned which are virtually free:
Visiting cute animals
This may seem a strange one but having two girls means we are always on the look out for cute (preferably baby) animals wherever we go. But you don’t always have to pay for the privilege. A friend of ours has recently got a kitten which we are yet to see and a childminder friend has been incubating some eggs and has 5 newly hatched chicks which we are dying to pay a visit to.
Nature spotting and recording
Another animal-based activity. We have just received some binoculars through the post as a gift for joining the National Trust and my five year old is desperate to give them a try. Nature spotting (whether it be seagulls, squirrels, daisies or ducks) at your local park, forest or beach can be a real adventure for young children. I think we are going to try taking along a pad and pencils too so we can write down or draw what we have seen along the way.
We love libraries!
I know, I do mention this a lot but it’s true! Our library, as with many others, run free activities for children during the holidays. You normally need to book (often well in advance) but it’s worth checking what might be going on where you live. We are booked on a pet themed craft sessions and the girls will also enjoy having a good browse and then picking about 10 books each which I will then have to carry home!
My eldest loves crafty things and I’m well aware that we hardly ever make time for this kind of activity during the term time. With more free time, I’m sure she’ll love writing and drawing and maybe we will even have a go at some of the craft activities she got for her birthday back in October which we still haven’t had time for. You could always link creative activities to your days out e.g. pictures and stories about what you have done, collect pebbles to paint or flowers, feathers etc. that they can use in their artwork.
We aren’t going too crazy with our vegetable growing this year due to our plans to move but I definitely aim to get a few things planted this holidays and I’m sure the kids will love being involved too. We have some seeds leftover from last year and have also got some from my Mum so will hopefully manage a little free food this year with no investment. If you fancy giving growing a go you can get seeds very cheaply from supermarkets or try asking friends who may have spare or your local Freecycle group where you often find people offering surplus seeds or small plants.
Parks and picnics
The second part may be optimistic and weather-dependent but I’m sure we will squeeze in a few visits to the park over the next week. We are so lucky to have a huge, amazing park within walking distance of our house but to be honest even a few swings and a slide is enough to excite the little ones. We try to make it more fun by meeting a friend down there or taking along a picnic lunch or perhaps a flask of hot chocolate to share.
Please feel free to share your ideas for free/cheap activities this holiday in the comments sections below – we would love to have more to try!