At the end of a tiring week, I frequently struggle to come up with fun and fresh ideas for weekend activities that will be enjoyed by the whole family. We all love going to the cinema and going for dinner but these are expensive options, and I don’t always find these activities satisfies my desire for quality family time. Thankfully, the internet is awash with other parents in my position who are more than willing to share their ideas and advice. I thought it would be a good addition to this blog to whip up a list of my family’s favorite weekend activities, in the hope that you and your flock will also find them enjoyable.
I have always loved camping, and luckily for me, so do my family. It’s a great way to escape the hustle and bustle of the city and encourages your kids to spend less time in front of the box. We often pack up the car with our equipment and head towards one of our favourite campsites. In fact, we have been to one campsite so often that we are on first name terms with the owners and have made good friends with some of the other “regulars”. If you are not keen on going too far, even pitching a tent in your back garden can be fun and exciting for the whole family. If you are interested in this weekend activity, here are some of my top tips for camping with your family:
- Get all the relevant camping equipment. This will include a family-sized tent, sleeping bags and cooking equipment.
- Make a note of what you plan to eat for each meal, so that you can be sure you have enough food for the weekend. Unfortunately, I learnt this lesson the hard way!
- Make pre-cooked meals and transport them in a cooler. These can simply be reheated or eaten cold, saving you time and effort.
- Many campsites offer activities for children. But if they don’t, bring along plenty of things to keep your kids (and the adults) entertained. I tend to pack, colouring pencils, books and tennis rackets, frisbees, etc.
- Make a list of anything that you wish you’d brought on your trip so that you don’t forget it next time.
- Bike ride
Another way to enjoy the great outdoors with your family is with a bike ride. We have lots of beautiful and manageable bike routes in our area. I found out about them by conducting a simple search online. The beauty of a bike ride as you can make it as long or as short as you like so it fits in well with the rest of your busy weekend schedule. If we have time, my family and I ride our bikes to the park for a picnic. I really love how much my kids enjoy their bikes. It gives them a sense of freedom and independence.
- Games night
This is one of my family’s favorite weekend activities. I have to admit, we all have a healthy competitive streak which can result in a very lively night. We even have a leaderboard stuck to the fridge! Each time we have a games night we take it turns to choose the game we will play. You may wish to make a proper night of it by inviting friends or neighbors over and proving pizza and popcorn. I think you’ll find this to be one of the most exciting, enjoyable weekend family activities.
- Cooking class
My kids love to get their hands dirty in the kitchen so we spend many a Sunday up to our elbows in baking ingredients. It’s a great way to spend quality time together, and we always learn something new each time. Recently I got a number of cookery freebies online, so we have been going crazy in the kitchen. We made savoury muffins and flapjacks last week which were a welcome addition to all our packed lunch boxes. If you are interested in this activity, check out the many healthy and fun recipes that are perfect for cooking with your children.
- Get crafty
Sometimes I bring out our art supply box, and we all work together on an artful project. This is again a fun and educational weekend to enjoy with your children. It gives them the opportunity to express themselves through their creativity. I’m always amazed and terribly proud of their masterpieces. Recently we made a bird feeder for the garden and the time before that we designed a Christmas card that I copied and sent to the extended family and our friends. Another very fun and creative way to spend the weekend is to do portraits of one another. I suggested this as a one-off activity but my kids found it so hilarious we have done it several times since.
I think I’m quite lucky in that I don’t need to persuade my kids to help me with the gardening; they truly love it. So much so that Santa left them some child-friendly gardening tools in their stockings this year. Most children will enjoy the responsibility of their own patch of the garden. They have total control over the types of plants and how to arrange them. They are also in charge of watering and maintaining their patch. There are many easy to follow plant your own kits that are suitable for both young and older children.
Another family favorite of ours is spending some time together, reading. Even though we are all absorbed in our own novels, just being in each others company feels like quality family time. It’s also a great opportunity to unwind together after a long week and make some headway with your latest read. Alternatively, we pop on a funny film or TV show.
So, those are my top 7 weekend family activities. I hope that you take some inspiration from this article.
Do you have some of your own favorite family weekend activities to share?