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Six weeks to fill

Here’s a few ideas to keep the kids occupied this summer…

Barbecues – food is great for bringing people together. You can also be creative in sharing costs, by inviting others and getting them to bring a dish.

Bike riding – you don’t have to rush out and get the latest, finger-light design. There are lots of places where you can hire bikes and go riding. These range from banana bikes to mountain biking. Great fun and will help with any additional pounds that need to be shed.

Swimming – similar to bike riding. If you or any of your family can’t swim, think about lessons. These are relatively cheap and a great way to learn together.

Movies – DVDs are great, but nothing beats that big screen experience. Lots of cinemas offer family deals at certain times of the day. 

A visit to the park – You can capture so many things visiting the park. You can prepare food together (no not ordering a burger or hot dog!), and encourage everyone to take a book. You can play football, roller-skate, or even jump in one of those floating objects in the middle of the lake.

Museums – great to combine fun with education. Many museums have free entry.

Water fight – This is a great impromptu thing to do. Run to the local shop, buy a couple of water pistols and surprise the kids. Especially if you’re a bit grumpy or stiff, this a great way to reveal another side of you!

Electronic games – let’s face it the thing is in the house and your kids spend more time on them than with you. Join in. Highly embarrassing (be prepared to lose), but great for bridging the gap.

Do a combination of these and you’re guaranteed to have a great time and the children will have a holiday to remember.

Want some more ideas?

There are some great websites that can help you to work out cheap activities with the family.

Try www.ideasforthekids.co.uk . You simply type in your postcode and category of activity and it will let you know all the activities available within a given radius. I was impressed by the amount of things available within 10 miles. Only drawback was it didn’t offer the facility to look for age specific activities, but otherwise very helpful.

Did you know there is a Family Information Service in your local authority? No, nor did I.

They were originally focussed on local childcare providers including summer play schemes, so are a great source of information for that, but now some also list events in your local the area to do with the family.

There are lots of other resources you can use. Take the opportunity to engage and have some fun with your kids, it doesn’t have to be expensive and you won’t regret it!

Get on the forum and share your ideas?

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