Spring and summer are so great for so many reasons - not the least of which is all the outdoor and water play that takes place and fills your kids' faces with so much joy. But as time marches on, we can't stop the cool weather from rolling in - and there are more days when we want to spend large chunks of time indoors.
I've found it so helpful in my few years of parenting experience to tuck the odd activity and new toy away for days when your kids are sick, and/or it's wet outside and you want to avoid cabin fever for as long as possible.
We've found some great options just like that for you below. Come at us, cold weather!
Toys and activities for cooler weather
I think my very favourite types of toys, are those that can be used over and over again - but create very little mess. In this regard, I love the idea of the water painting doodle mat and pen
- just fill the pen with water and your kids can create and create again. Fun!
enable kids to expend their energy indoors... which is pretty much a must if you have toddlers running around at your feet! An excellent option for those cooler days. A New Zealand-made product, these super fun looking toys help children develop balance and coordination.
My four year old is completely obsessed with the mailbox, he spends time every day going back and forth and gets excited to find anything - even the circulars! I think this Dear Little Letterbox would have to be a massive hit with the small people, and would make an excellent gift as well as something to keep kids entertained while indoors. The letterbox comes complete with mounting supplies - as well as notepad, coloured pencils, sharpener, envelopes and stickers. Cute! Available from Bubbalooz.
The Flipzles Colour-Your-Own Speedway Puzzle and Playset involves your child in the whole process - from personalising the puzzle to getting involved in their own speedster speedway. Literally hours of fun!
It's exclusively available from Squoodles
It's morning-tea-o'clock and time to get busy in your play kitchen, preparing delicious treats for one and all. Toy kitchens are perpetual hits with toddlers and preschoolers - watch them mimic your dinner preparation too! This one is very cute, available from Munch Cupboard
If you know someone handy with tools, you could have them make your family a doll's house
... but for those of us short on skills (or at least, time!) here's a cool option:
It's the Hape All Seasons House
- "Six rooms, moveable stairs and a reversible winter/summer themed solar panelled roof inspire year round activities." Awesome for many rainy days to come!
Does your dress up box need an upgrade? Kids can have endless fun with inspiring dress up options - there is a huge selection available from Kidzstuffonline
Lots of kiddos adore art projects, and this is an easy one (though potentially not entirely mess-free)! Everything you need comes in the box
, so that's a bonus.
We'd love to hear your ideas for rainy days, too. Check out our craft ideas
for further inspiration. If all else fails, build a fort with some old sheets, throw in a few pillows and read a book - with a torch for extra fun. Stay strong - the cold weather won't last forever! :)