Parenting

5 Cheap and Easy Indoor Boredom-Busters for Toddler’s

My little toddler Finley is on the go all the time !! He literally runs on Duracell batteries, he adores the outdoors, and hates been cooped up in the house for too long – basically a typical excitable 1 year old.

Indoor days can be tricky
Finley and I are busy every day, we have the school runs, we go on walks, we have park days, mums and tots groups etc … sometimes much to Finley’s disappointment we need to be in the house and  those days can be loooonnng with a toddler, there are days i need to get jobs done around the house (cleaning up after boys is a tough old job), also it’s winter time, some days the weather is to cold and totally grim  or I just need to flipping sit down and get a cuppa !! 


Teaching Finley to Play!
Lately though being 8 months pregnant I’m exhausted, it’s finally caught up with me.  I’m feeling very very pregnant !!! The tiredness really hits me in the afternoon time before the school run so we have been taking things a bit slower on some afternoons. 
I think it’s important for Finley to learn that some days we have some down time, that he needs to unwind and not just run around nuts – as when his little brother arrives there may be a days where we simply can’t pack up and go out all day. 
Lately I have been focusing on encouraging him to play- by that I mean to concentrate on an activity for as long as he can. 
Keeping in mind that he is only 1 and a half, some days he might focus for 5 mins some days 10 mins. 
 My thinking is that these play skills will hopefully come in super handy  when baby number 3 arrives-  when I can’t be at his every beck and call- fingers crossed anyway!!
Busting the Boredom
Recently he has been fed up with his toys- you know the expensive noisy plastic ones that should give hours of fun.. yeah he ends up just ignoring them and running around like a mad man, in and out of cupboards getting grumpy and tearful and just generally a moan. – I’ve mentioned Finley’s famous happy hour before between 4pm and 5pm- it’s a total meltdown situation. 
If I wasn’t pregnant it would a perfectly acceptable time to drink a straight vodka…maybe 3.
I’ve realised he’s reached an age where he’s not a baby anymore he’s a toddler ( although he thinks he’s 12) he knows more,  he’s smart he needs stimulation, he’s getting bored. 
I have put together some activities for him to do to help bust the boredom, encourage and teach him to concentrate on an activity and actually play- so far he has been loving exploring the new activities, he gets especially excited when the pasta and big spoons come out! 
Here are the Top 5 activities that have been a success with Finley.  I usually do 1 a day,  using items from around the house or grab a few items if needed from the pound shop – so it’s super easy and super cheap – hopefully there is something on this list your little would enjoy too!! 
Treasure Baskets
Super quick and easy, literally gather bits and bobs from around the house (obviously safe things no electric drills or hedge trimmers)  fill a small box with different textures, colours  and let your little one explore. Each week or so you can mix it up to keep them interested. This week was textures I chopped up old cloths, grabbed a noodle duster from poundland and threw in some sponges- so easy. Finley was super excited to investigate everything.


Teddy Bears Picnic
I tidy away all the plastic toys that have taken over my living room, put out a little mat, get a bunch of Finley’s soft toys some plastic plates, cups, jugs, bowls and we have a teddy bears picnic.  Surprisingly to me Finley really enjoys this, I thought he wouldn’t be to fussed but he babbles away for ages while playing with his teddies
Sensory Bags and Bottles
I just grabbed some zip lock freezer bags, filled them with shaving foam, paint, hair gel, and let Finley work away exploring the bags, he really loved the shaving foam one and watching the paint mix in together.  Filling up plastic bottles with rice and lentils is also a hit-  warning its a little noisy think that is what makes it popular all the same.
Pasta Play
This is basically me grabbing a large bowl, ( if you have a bucket even better) with dried pasta, fired in some large spoons, plastic cups for scoops.  This has been Finley’s absolute favorite activity he spent ages just scooping the pasta in and out of the cups.

Tunnels and Tents
I bought this tunnel and tent in Ikea for Finley’s 1st birthday- they have been a brilliant purchase and not that expensive at all-  this activity is very popular with Finley – its a super way for him to burn off some of that energy and keeps him entertained. He loves zooming through the tunnel and playing peek-a-boo.

I hope you enjoy trying out some some of these ideas, feel free to share any boredom busters you have too or ways you have changed them up for your little one !!
Signing off for now, the husband has just made a  nice cup of tea- yay

Kathryn