In proud partnership with eBay UK
“What day is it Daddy? I think it’s time to go back to school.”
“Me too, Rich but you still have two more weeks left! It’s Thursday, by the way.”
“Can we go to Disney World?”
“Disney World?? Erm, not today, babe.”
Do you know, where we live up in the midlands, the school holidays started on 12th July, six weeks ago? Yep – along with Scotland our holidays are at least a week earlier than the rest of the UK. Invariably by the third or fourth week in we’ve exhausted our holiday spends and we’re struggling for ideas. We’re well into our sixth week off now with yet another week to go before the boys return to normality and I’m determined not to give in to the PlayStation just yet.
This week eBay UK came to the rescue with a new challenge for us! They tasked us to come up with seven fun, cheap activities to do at home with the boys during our last week of the school hols. So, with a budget of just over £20 per day, we selected an admirable selection of new gardening items, movies, games, baking bits and crafts. We were astonished how far our budget would stretch!
So, without further ado we started on Saturday with…
Saturday: Bird spotting
Our ‘new’ house (we still call it new after 12 years) is in a suburb of a big city. But, you’d be amazed at the variety of species of birds that visit our city garden.
In the past weeks we’ve had woodpeckers, woodpigeons, our resident robin, several tits (oi, naughty) and a greenfinch! So our first eBay find was a lovely wooden bird table – the most expensive item from our activities shopping at £35 (we compensated with a cheap Sunday).
Along with the bird table we ordered bird seed and a marvellous pair of binoculars each for the boys.
Using the boys’ favourite granola, porridge oats, chopped grapes, a cup of honey and a dollop of low fat spread, we set about baking some cereal bars to snack on during the last week of the hols.
From eBay we selected a new ‘tray-bake’ style baking tin, some coconut Fry Light cooking spray and a stylish cookbook stand for our (don’t judge) tablet computer! We called the resulting flapjacks ‘Granolyall bars’.
Monday: 80s movie marathon
For a rainy Monday, we selected four classic 80s family movies to watch with the boys. Fruit and fizzy drinks at the ready, we got ourselves comfy and watched, back to back: Disney’s Return to Oz, The Princess Bride, The Wizard and Little Monsters.
It was very nostalgic for me and Tom and quite exciting for Lyall and Rich. It turns out Return to Oz is quite creepy, even by today’s CGI standards! Needless-to-say, we’re all movied out for at least a day or two after that.
Tuesday: Giant garden games
The sun came out on Tuesday so we had a ‘wooden tower’ tournament with a giant wooden tower game from eBay.
It’s actually quite addictive – we spent two full hours going from best of three, to best of five, to best of nine until we eventually played about 12 rounds! Lyall won by a huge lead of six games.
Wednesday: Making a herb garden
Did you know you can buy live plants from eBay? It was a surprise to us too!
We ordered a variety of six herb seedlings and a wooden ‘triple’ box planter for the back garden.
The boys – particularly Richard loves gardening and especially planting up. We’re very pleased with the result.
Thursday: Friendship bracelets
Lyall and Rich decided to make friendship bracelets rather than thank you cards for the various people we’ve been to see and stay with during the Summer hols this year. We selected a Friendship bracelet making kit from eBay for about £8 and spent the whole afternoon plaiting, twisting and knotting together our bracelets.
It’s quite difficult to master but very therapeutic, cheap fun and the resulting little bracelets are very pretty.
Friday: Scrapbook day
As a family we’re generally pretty lazy at keeping physical photos and keep-sakes, with everything being online and on our devices nowadays. But we thought it would be really nice for the boys to have scrapbooks to refer back to containing tickets, photos and flyers from all the days out and trips we’ve been on this Summer.
To make the process a little more entertaining, we found a Rapesco electronic stapler from eBay along with two colourful scrapbooks.
So there you have our seven fun activities for the last seven days of the hols! If you have any other fun ideas and suggestions for cheap holiday activities, please do let us know in the comments.
Disclaimer time - Here at Daddy & Dad we supplement our adoption and parenting blog content by collaborating with our favourite family-friendly brands and businesses. This is a paid partnership with eBay UK. We’d like to say a huge thank you to eBay and their agency – you rescued our last week of the holidays!