Keeping Kids Busy During Holiday Break!

December 22, 2014

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Christmas break just started a few days ago. Are you ready for the kids to go back to school already? I’m not quite there yet, but I’m sure after Christmas I’m going to be! For now, we are still getting ready for the holiday. Today the kids are out Christmas shopping for me with dad. They weren’t too thrilled to go (seriously?!). I had to shove them out the door and almost locked it behind them. Tonight we are finishing a Gingerbread House we started the other day (do you know how hard it is to get those walls to stay up??!!) and hopefully, we’ll finish frosting homemade sugar cookies tomorrow to leave out for Santa. Lots of fun stuff to do this week!

After Christmas though might be another story. Yes, they’ll have new toys to play with but you know you will probably hear those dreaded words at some point: ‘I’m bored’, or the annoying bickering that sets in for those kiddos with siblings. My house is often loud and hard to hear with a 4, 5 and 6 year old running around and more often times than not all I hear is ‘Mom!!!!!!!!! Addie took my stuff or Maggie sat on me!!’ Yeah, good times and that’s when the stress starts to set in. This is when it’s time to find a more productive activity.

So, if you’re in a need of some holiday break activities that won’t break the bank and will keep the kiddos busy, keep reading!

Clean out the kids rooms and donate old toys to make room for new toys – It’s the perfect time of year! Make some room for the new toys and donate the old ones to those in need to a local daycare center, charity or thrift store. Have the kids help you go through their old toys and pick out ones they no longer play with.

Go sledding and make homemade hot cocoa afterwards – Enjoy a morning or afternoon outdoors sledding with the kids. It’s as fun as you remember it, I promise! Need a yummy hot cocoa recipe to try? Check out Grandpa Shorter’s recipe here!

Check out the local library – We try to go once a week while school is in session but sometimes we’re just too busy. Take a day and check out what your local library has to offer including movies and free kids activities. More info on the Petoskey Public Library can be found here.

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Ice fishing – I had to throw this one in. We live in one of the ice fishing capital’s of world and now that it’s finally winter we have 6-7″ of good ice on our small inland lakes right now. Perfect for an afternoon of catching perch. Kiddos can fish free (up to 3 lines). My kiddos love it.

Ice skating – Check out the local ice rink where you can rent skates for only a few bucks. Griffin Arena here in Petoskey has Open Skate hours several times a week.

Go bowling – Not a fan of the outdoor activities? Try your hand at bowling with the kids. Make sure you call a head and check open bowling times, make an afternoon or evening of it. Plus, some bowling alleys offer specials certain days and hours so call or check their website. Our local bowling alley Northern Lights Recreation offers a family day every Sunday for $39.95 from open to 3pm which includes bowling for up to 6 people, shoes, pizza and soda!

Local indoor bounce house – Just want to relax while the kiddos run around and burn off energy? Check the hours of you local indoor bounce house. Busy Bodies Bounce Town is our go-to place during breaks and summer to get out of the heat. They also offer a bonus – for every 5 passes you buy, get 1 visit free!

Playdates – Make a point to visit friends you don’t see that often. My kiddos are always bugging to play with friends they don’t see very often. Christmas break is perfect for that. I’m willing to bet the parent of the said child would LOVE a break too.

Build a Snowman – It’s winter and the snow will be here soon (if you don’t already have some in your back yard). Gather all the needed materials: Carrot nose, hat and scarf, large buttons or rocks for his buttons, eyes and mouth. Have fun with it and use items found around your house!

Have a Pajama/Movie/Family Game day – That’s right, chill out at home, don’t bother getting dressed and watch movies and play games all day. Bond. Spend time together as a family.

Looking for some other awesome activities and ideas for the kids? Check out Colleen’s posts here and here over on Mommie Daze for some great ideas to keep the kids busy and your sanity intact during the holiday break!

 

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Jill Schultz