Having a very active toddler who enjoys to be outside at all times – but simultaneously living in one of the wettest/ coldest countries almost all year around we’ve definitely had to invest some time into sourcing ideas and supplies for creative activities to keep our little man entertained on the rainy days that we are cooped up indoors.
Not only this, being pregnant with our second child on the way my ability to travel and explore whilst solo-parenting on an occasion has become more limited, finding activities that can be done at home are a must for the days where my new pregnancy sciatica / morning sickness is at a high. Here are a few of our recent play activities that have been a hit for us:
Jelly Messy Play:
We recently invested in a ‘Tuff Tray’ with lid and compartments (£49.99) which although is one of our more pricier play tools it has already become a favourite of ours and super diverse for possible messy play / organizing activities for toddlers.
This particular messy play activity is ideal for any younger infants / toddlers who are still exploring with their mouths as everything is completely edible. We used 2 types of Hartley’s Jelly Sachets that went really far and were inexpensive as well as chopped up fruit pieces, we opted for lemon, lime and orange but there are so many possible taste combinations and the sensory element has been really enjoyable for our little explorer.
Creepy Crawly Messy Play:
Another of our Messy Play activities using our ‘Tuff Tray’ has been our Creepy Crawly messy play. Finn really enjoyed this and the majority of the equipment can be re-used time and time again which is great! Although I would suggest that this be for your older toddlers who are able to differentiate between food and non food items.
For this activity we used ‘Jelli-Play’ (£2.99) which comes in a variety of colours and the sachet holds the potential for multiple portions of the slime once mixed with water and re-set, it also washes away down the sink with warm water after play. This isn’t edible and can create a bit of a mess to tidy up afterwards so please do make sure you have a waterproof mat down if indoors! Although we found this was completely stain free. Inclusive of this we also used foraged leaves from our garden to add to the theme as well as a pack of Creepy Crawlies (£7) which can be used time and time again!
Water Play and Climbing activities:
Our son is a massive fan of water, a true ‘water baby’ and so any activity including this element is always a big hit! We have used the kitchen sink to practice ‘washing up’ imaginary play; we’ve included actual utensils, bubbles as well as organizing and cleaning water friendly alphabet letters and numbers. For the days when the weather is a little brighter we venture into the garden to play with his water activity table (£20), this can include both water and sand compartments but we are yet to source the sand. It’s been great for organising, playing with different textures, sensory play as well as fine motor skills.
Our son has always been a climber almost as long as he’s been able to walk and so once we felt more confident in his abilities we invested in a toddler climbing frame for our home. This is our most expensive piece of play equipment, but has been such a worthwhile investment. We sourced ours from Etsy where you can find a variety of customisable options with prices ranging from £80 – £200. This is great for toddlers motor skills, keeping them active, building confidence in their strength and balance and is a great and constructive way to keep toddlers from climbing inappropriate and non safe parts of your home. This has been a big hit for Finn and all of his visiting friends too!
Being first time parents, we are always keen to think of / find new activities and ideas for play for our little adventurer. We would love to hear from any other parents / play workers who have other ideas they would be willing to share for us to try out – please feel free to reach out!
Until Next Time,
The Lawrences xx