It seems kids have at least one day off a month from school for some reason or another and then there is the year end breaks. In our area schools close basically the last 2 and 1/2 weeks of December and first week of January. It’s a large amount of time where parents are juggling caretakers and ensuring coverage as most of us do not have the ability to take off all the time from work to be with them.
The fun part of taking time off at the year end is there are a lot of home related DIY type projects you can involve the kids in that are both educational and entertaining. Honestly with guests coming some of these activities are perfect for a large group to do and keep everyone busy! It can be very difficult some days to get them to put the electronics down and stimulated in being creative.
Between Minecraft and Kids YouTube our son could literally spend the entire day on his iPad if we let him.
Involving the kids in the kitchen to prepare food and clean up are important life skills and can be fun at the same time. Kids love to mix, stir and lick bowls! Bring them into the kitchen to make regular dinner or a dessert. Our son loves to make his own creations so I will often pull out that mini individual brownie pan or a cupcake tin and personalize treats with him. One our favorites are have it your way brownies where we had crushed pretzels, peanut butter and other fun ingredients to a few brownies.
There are a ton of kid recipes online but I have found that when I involve our son in making things he likes to eat it greatly increases his attention. I’ve had him making mac-n-cheese, noodles, his own school lunch bag and sweet treats. Whenever he expresses interest I find a way to involve him. Hopefully one day he will remember these times and see them as fun memories and know how to feed himself.
When we make dinner together I will involve him in seasoning things. We use the doTERRA essential oils for many of our seasoning ingredients and he’s old enough to know how to put a drop in to whatever we’re making. This has been a game changer in getting him to try new things too. When he feels like he controlled what it will taste like he’s more apt to eat it and recommend we clean our plates!
I have also found making things like Jello or gummy snacks together is engaging for him. He likes to stir the mixture and will be the one to check it constantly to see if it is ready. Here too we can add some natural elements by using plain gelatin and flavoring it with things like the doTERRA Wild Orange, Lemon, Lime, and other interesting tastes. Using non-toxic coloring allows him to personalize it that way too. We’ve had some interesting colored gelatin to say the least.
Another great way to involve kids is in the process of making things like soap and other natural DIY gift items. They are going to need teacher gifts so why not involve them in the process of making something instead of buying it? Making personal gifts like this gives kids that feeling of accomplishment and they are super proud of their creation.
Easy melt and pour soap bases are inexpensive and quick to make. You can add coloring, sparkles and of course doTERRA essential oils for aroma and other cool benefits. The melt-and pour soap bases will need adult involvement due to the melting process but kids can certainly stir, mix in the color and oils and help cut and wrap the soap into bars. Another option is to make foaming soap in cute jars.
Like soap other DIY gifts that are easy and kid friendly to make are lip balms, lotions, body wash, bath bombs and personalized oil blends to use as perfumes. These are all super inexpensive and easy to make. You can then also wrap them in cute teacher mugs or simple string and ribbons. I like to make these up and then slip a coffee gift card in there as a little something extra. Trust me your kids will long remember doing this and ask every year to make something for the teachers. It is very touching and teachers will love the creativity the kids put into these gifts.
Ok so there is nothing fun about having to do chores especially when there is so much holiday fun going on. Getting your kids to clean their room, help with unloading the dishwasher or just you know picking up in general can be a real battle. I like involving our son in these tasks not because I’m a mean mom but because long term they are going to help him be a successful adult. With it not always being something that can be avoided I’ve tried to make it as fun as possible.
Since he does help around the house and has since he was very little I wanted to make sure there wasn’t anything that could harm him. When he wipes down his bathroom I wanted germs to be killed and it to be clean but I didn’t want to irritate his skin or burn his nose. I may have the only little boy who likes to clean toilets now and here’s why…
I use baking soda, white vinegar and 5-7 drops doTERRA Purify or their new Lemon Eucalyptus in the toilet bowl. It fizzes and makes noise, it smells good and our son is fascinated by that even still at 8 years old. He now knows how much of each to put in himself and then he has his own brush to clean the bowl. It’s his responsibility but he’s never not wanted to do it since we started making it exciting to see fizz going off in his toilet bowl. However, that fizz is safe, non-toxic and it effectively kills the stuff we don’t want hanging out in the bathroom. Hey it is definitely worth a try with your kids because if they can get excited about cleaning a toilet bowl what else is possible?
Keep them Engaged
Technology is always in our hands and there are so many studies indicating our children’s brains are being impacted by so much time spent like that. Breaking the cycle by getting them busy using their imagination and hands is an incredible experience for them and you. I notice a whole lot less arguments with our son when he has spent some fun time with me doing something together like these things.
If you’re looking for fun things to make with your kids, check out my Kids Play Recipe book. It has several DIY things to make like sidewalk chalk, paint, and even play clay. These too can be made with your kids and then they can immediately start using them in their play activities. Download it today at: