We’re all on Lockdown!
It really isn’t easy is it? I mean, not only are we on edge everytime we leave the house (which is rare now in any event!) but on top of this awful virus we now have to work from home, home school, cook, clean and be there 24/7 without any breaks! Yes, they go to bed (eventually!) but by that time I’m far too shattered after a day of working and homeschooling (don’t forget the obligatory crafting) to do anything other than veg in front of the sofa.
I do envy those who can take this time to learn a new language, catch up on series on Netflix and generally ‘get stuff done’. Don’t get me wrong, I love my kids and wouldn’t change a thing deep down (apart from baby shark on repeat!) but how I long to do something different for just one day! So to help, I’ve come up with some tips for those who are also feeling somewhat challenged, to get through this together!
1. Baking. Even if you’re not a baker, (like me) why not have a go at making rice crispy cakes. Get the kids to do some mixing and weighing of ingredients. Remember, this also counts as a math lesson! Pre-schoolers can get involved as well; talking about colours, mixing and get them to count out how many cake cases you’ll need. If it all ends badly, at least you can lick the bowl, right?
2. When you take a much needed break outside (remembering only 1 trip and near to home!) see what leaves/pine cones you can find. Talk about what trees they come from; Google is great for finding out things like this! You could even (if you’re feeling extra crafty and don’t mind a bit of mess!) get the paints out and paint and print using the leaves and create your own leafy collage. I recently ordered some paint pads online, which are brilliant! Less mess and you can just press your hand/foot/leaf straight into the pad and then onto the paper – voila!
3. Colouring is a great one, it can relieve stress in children, which we could all do with at this time! I got my toddler some Crayola sheets where the pens don’t work on anything other than the paper; no mess! Blink of an Eye will also be posting some great sheets online soon, which will be available to download. Don’t forget to share them to our Facebook page too.
4. Getting kids to help around the house is hard, but making it (slightly) more fun might just do the trick. I get my eldest to help by pairing socks, as we seem to have an awful lot of lost and lonely socks in our house. For every pair she pairs, she earns 10p. It’s not a lot, but it keeps her occupied, she earns a bit of money and most importantly it gets it done. My youngest also likes to get in on the action, but seems to run off with them! I also do the same with folding of clothes etc. and offer my eldest an extra 15 minutes on the Nintendo Switch or Ipad.
5. Reading. Most schools have sent out packs to keep those in education occupied and still learning. Now is an excellent time to get the family reading together. You could even make up your own alternative endings to stories and see what you can create. My eldest recently asked her grandparents to read to her via Facetime, it was lovely seeing her curled up on the sofa listening.
6. If you have any cardboard boxes lying around, get them out and get creative. Turn them into a rocket or a racing car, get the scissors and coloured pens out and let their imagination go wild!
7. Dress up. Dress up as your favourite pop star, ‘Youtuber’ (as my 8-year-old requests!), athlete etc, and get the kids to put on a show. How about letting the kids try on some of your clothes, their dad’s clothes? Oh, and don’t forget to take photos for their 21st!
8. At home karaoke! This is one of my favourites! Get the words up on Youtube/google and let them sing their hearts out! You could even show them some of the classics from ‘back in the day’, you know Take That, Spice Girls, throw a bit of Oasis into the mix! Why not try out some old school dance routines (you know you still know them off by heart!) and let them make their own up. Too cool for all that? Have a look on TicToc, and see if you can pull off the latest dance craze! After all, it burns off a bit of energy too!
10. If you have a garden or outside space available now is a great time to get tidying up and planting things. Make sure to label up pots so the kids can have a competition to see whos grows first. Painting pots with funny faces and bright colours too will add some much-needed fun and colour to the garden!
11. Care package. I have just done this with my girls. We used a cardboard box and filled it with things that my grandad loves and posted it to him. We put in all his favourite things; liquorice allsorts, mint humbugs, tea bags, homemade shortbread, letters written by my girls and a homemade card made with our handprints. It was lovely to know that we could do something to cheer him up, as at the moment he is unable to go out and I imagine quite lonely. If you have an elderly relative/neighbour or even a local care home, this could be a great way to let them know you are thinking of them.
I’m sure you all have some fabulous ideas of your own too, why not share them on Blink of an Eye’s Facebook page, as we are all in this together.
If all else fails; there is always wine and chocolate! Although, I can’t seem to get my hands on Dairy Milk at the moment!
I think the most important thing to take from this is, just go with the flow. Yes, some days it’ll work and you’ll think “hey, I’ve got this, this isn’t too bad” and others it’ll be more like “oh my god, how on earth do the teachers cope with this?!” It will end, they will go to bed and you can finally relax! Remember, you’ve got this! Make sure you set time aside to make those phone calls to friends and even Facetime/Zoom so at least when you can’t see your besties in person, they are only at the end of a camera or phone.
Hope you’ve enjoyed this blog, stay safe and well and as sane as you can!
Love from Gemma and the Blink Team