4 Activities for Moms and Kids That Lighten the Mood During the Pandemic

Guest Blogger, Rachelle Wilber

This has been a tough year for all sorts of people, and your family is likely feeling the strain. With normal activities canceled and the pandemic bringing a constant sense of unease, you might be finding it hard to lighten the mood. This is especially problematic if you have young children. Despite all the madness swirling in the adult world around them, kids are simply trying to enjoy their childhoods. You can do them a big favor by finding fun activities to cheer them up and bring some sunshine into their lives. While countless outings could do the trick, these four activities are particularly worth considering.

Have a Picnic

Even in the winter, you can bundle up and enjoy the pleasures of eating a meal in the great outdoors. This is a perfect pandemic activity because you can do it away from other people. It’s a big world out there, and you’re sure to find some patch of grass where you can stay properly socially distanced. Bring the kids’ favorite toys, and your lunch could turn into a memorable afternoon.

Visit a Pharmacy

When typical attractions are closed, it’s on parents like you to find unique sources of entertainment. Pharmacies are about much more than pills and medications. Between bulk packages of candy, holiday-themed decorations, and an assortment of toys, there’s plenty in your average pharmacy that will get kids excited.

Go for a Hike

Hiking is an especially great activity because it is both fun and active. Your kids probably have lots of pent up energy from spending so much time cooped up indoors, and they’ll enjoy being able to blow off some steam out on the trail. They’ll also benefit from substituting a bit of fresh air and nature for their typical pandemic-era screen time.

Have a Scavenger Hunt

Scavenger hunts are almost as much fun for a parent to prepare as they are for kids to carry out. All you need for this activity is an outdoor space (a park will work if you don’t have a yard) and a handful of household items. You’ll get a kick out of hiding your belongings, and the kids will get a real thrill from the hunt.

With a bit of creativity, you can still have plenty of family fun during the pandemic. These activities are proven hits among kids and adults alike.

Author Bio

Rachelle Wilber is a freelance writer living in the San Diego, California area. She graduated from San Diego State University with her Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Media Studies. She tries to find an interest in all topics and themes, which prompts her writing. When she isn’t on her porch writing in the sun, you can find her shopping, at the beach, or at the gym. Follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

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4 Musical Instruments You and Your Child Can Make at Home

4-musical-instruments-you-and-your-child-can-make-at-home

Guest Blogger, Dixie Somers

Early childhood is a beautiful time of learning, play and discovery, and music has a vital role in increasing your child’s ability to move, learn, and process information. Incorporating music into your child’s playtime has long lasting benefits, and what better way than to have your children create musical instruments with their own hands? Below are a few instruments you and your child can make and play together.

 

Homemade Harmonica

To create these fun instruments you will need:

  • 2 Popsicle sticks (the width of tongue depressors),
  • 3 rubber bands (one small and two large)
  • 1 plastic straw
  • Scissors
  • Paint & paint brushes, colored pencils, markers, or other various colors

 

Before assembly: Have your child decorate the Popsicle stick however they like. If they use paint, allow the Popsicle sticks to completely dry before using them. While the Popsicle sticks are drying, cut two strips of construction paper (1 inch wide and 5 inches long) and place them aside. Cut two 1.5 inch pieces of straw.

Assembly: Cut two 1-inch pieces of straw, and place them aside. Then wrap the large rubber band length wise around one of the Popsicle sticks. Place the two cut pieces of straw on the two ends of the Popsicle stick, leaving some space open. Lay the other Popsicle stick on top, and use the two small rubber bands on each end to secure the entire harmonica together! The great thing about this instrument is not only creating it, but teaching your children to play it and seeing the sense of accomplishment they feel because of it.

 

Pan Flute Made from Straws

To create your pan flute you will need:

  • 10 straws in a bunch of colors
  • Sticky tape
  • Scissors

Assembly: Cut your first straw at 20cm. Then cut your 2nd straw at 18cm, and repeat with each straw 2 cm shorter than the previous one until the last straw is 2 centimeters long. Once it is complete, tape all of the straws together in a flat line and enjoy! The exciting part about this instrument is allowing your child to create their own music and flex their creative muscles.

 

Rain Sticks

To create your own rain sticks, you will need:

  • A paper towel tube or other long cardboard tube
  • Aluminum foil
  • Small dried beans (like lentils), unpopped popcorn, dry rice, or tiny pasta.
  • Brown paper (from a grocery bag) or construction paper
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • Crayons or markers

Assembly: Trace the ends of your paper towel roll on your brown or construction paper, and create little spokes around your circle. Create two of these circles. Cut along the spokes of one of those circles and glue the cap and spokes onto one end of your tube. Cut a piece of aluminum foil that is approximately 1.5 times the length of your paper towel roll. Crunch that foil into two long skinny pieces, and coil each piece like a spring, before placing them into the open end of your tube. Pour your beans, popcorn and pasta into the tube about 1/3rd of the way. Once everything is inside the tube, cut and glue the other circle with spokes to the other end of the tube to seal it. Then have your child decorate the tube with their colored pencils and markers. It is so much fun to create different sounds with different combinations of foil and beans/seeds. Experiment to see what sounds you can create together!

 

The Water Xylophone

For this water xylophone you will need:

  • 7 empty and clean Snapple bottles (or other glass bottles that are all equal in size and make. e.g. Coca Cola bottles, mason jars, etc.)
  • Water
  • Food coloring
  • Wooden spoons and metal butter knives

Assembly: This is perhaps the simplest one, and quite fun to experiment with. Fill each Snapple bottle with different amounts of water. Line them up from the most water to the least, and have your child color the water in each jar a different color. Then take your wooden spoons and butter knives in each hand, and strike away! Other than it being fun and a freeform instrument, allowing your child to experiment with the different notes and how they correlate with the volume of water teaches your child how to utilize this instrument to test their logical and mathematical intelligence.

Regardless of which instrument you choose to experiment with, these projects above are designed for you and your child to have fun as you embark on a journey of discovery though music. You might consider speaking to someone with an online masters in music education for deeper information about how music can benefit your child mentally, but these activities can also just increase your bond and open both of your worlds up to a whole new way to learn and play!

Tips For Creating The Best Family Picnic

family-picnic3

Guest Blogger, Nancy Shaw

Dig out the picnic basket and air the blanket, summer is arriving. What good method to take benefit of the warm climate and enjoy certain family time than with a picnic. Identify the methods to create it fun and stress free for all of the members in the family with these tips.

Make your research and settle on a picnic instead of driving your vehicle without any focus and believing to get lucky.

Weather
People know that British climate can be unexpected, therefore confirm the forecast on the day of the picnic prior moving to the place. Nothing worse than completing packing up the vehicle simply when the sky clouds over.

Pack of most of the choice. This is especially necessary if you have received a fussy eater. Take plenty of various types of food items to match all of your family members likes. Cherry tomatoes, carrot sticks, scotch eggs, rice cakes and dips are best and fuss free notions you can combine and match.

As vacation tour tend to happen at lunch time when the sun is at the hottest, so it is essential to slather the tots in different sun cream to guard the skin.

Blankets
Keep the picnic in a shady area, out of the straight sun light. Think about games which you can play as a family. You can also try simple ball games that are best ideas and bound to fully exhaust you all.

Try to take story books and read in the shade. If you have two small baby in your picnic, it is good to bring tandem strollers. You can place the lightweight one in the tandem strollers safely while moving.

Unless you are thinking on going to a real picnic spot with outdoor seating, keep in mind to take blankets to sit on. If you baby’s an ace at doing mess, look for a wipe clean number.

Games
With all of the games, food, blankets, and baby necessities, it is simple to overboard with packaging for a summer vacation. But you want to be able to take it, especially if you are having a car and get small kids hands to hold.

Consider taking only what you can be able to handle and limit your children to one toy. If your small one is still getting an afternoon nap, plan the travel to add this.

If you are satisfied and happy, settle the infant for a snooze in the tree shade on the blanket for his sleep.

Along with drinks and food, keep in mind to pack everything which your kid will require like wipes, nappies and other handy necessities such as plasters, insect repellent and hand sanitizer.

Basics
If there is any plan on being out all day, it is an excellent notion to consider a sunhat for every of the kids and a jumper also. It is essential not to forget the basics.

Instead of being experienced with the potential of cleaning up, taking yogurt flavored sandwiches and squashed strawberries, pack all of the items in individual sealed boxes and cool bags.

If the summer vacation does not go to a plan, plan for a indoor carpet picnic when it rains. Create the picnic a highly magical occasion for the wide eyed small ones and make a theme on the outing.

A toy like teddy bear picnic would be good to pull off. Bring the kids teddy bears to participate the party, get different honey flavored dishes and read the book.

Food
Plan having two individual coolers, one with beverages and another with perishable goods. Open the cooler with perishable products if you want to take to place the food fresh.

Keep the sandwiches in separate baggies or keep layers of wax paper in the middle of every layer to avoid them from drying out or sticking. Keep other snacks in BPA free boxes.

Rather than lugging along excess cups, think bringing beverages in light weight bottles. Your children and teens will love the fruit juice drinks with delicious flavors.

Picnics are a best method to create fun memories with the children. There is certain thing special on sitting on a blanket when nibbling on a sandwich which makes you in peaceful, vacation mode. Planning the ideal picnic can be fun if you make the family involved.

nancyAuthor Bio: Nancy Shaw is the founder of HiFiveBaby where she writes about common problems encountered by parents and how to deal with them, motherhood in general and FAQs about babies, toddlers and kids. She provides scientific and medical basis and also her personal experience as a mom to a wonderful toddler. Now you can explore the joy of parenthood with ease! You can also find her on Twitter.