With so many weeks until school returns it is quite often hard to keep children, and adults, entertained for such a long period of time.
Amusing kids can be a costly exercise but there are ways to have a fun time without having to reach for your wallet every day.
Picnic in the park
Have the children help to make sandwiches, fill water bottles and cut up fruit so they can enjoy a picnic in the park. It is especially nice if the park has stimulating play equipment to enjoy and make sure to take a ball to have some fun.
Make a Movie Date
Hire or borrow a couple of movies, pop some popcorn and sit and enjoy some family time.
Visit a museum and/or art gallery
Most museums and art galleries are either free or are relatively cheap. Plenty of them also have interactive displays where children can learn about things or create masterpieces.
Write and act out a play
Get your children to either write or dictate a play - with a beginning, middle and end - and then get them to act it out, ready for a performance in front of family and friends
With some paper plates, elastic, string, feathers, glitter, paint and more, create some beautiful masks to wear at the family’s masquerade ball.
If you already have a tent this is a cheap adventure. You can enjoy some toasted marshmallows, watch the stars and moon, tell spooky stories and play some games in the dark.
Plant a herb/veggie garden
You can either dig up a part of your garden or find some old pots, containers, almost anything to plant some herbs and vegetables. Make sure you create tags to label your plants.
Hide some treasure, it could be a treat or money, and create a treasure map which will have clues at different stops along the way. This could keep them busy for hours.
Create a necklace
Gather some string or elastic and different macaroni sizes and you have the beginning of a beautiful necklace. Some non-toxic paint could make it a colourful treasure.
Day at the beach
Make sure it is not too hot, then pack your towel, sunscreen, food and drink and enjoy a day at the beach. It will cost you nothing but you will have a day to remember.
If you have some fishing rods, dig up some worms or buy some bait and spend the day relaxing under a tree or on a beach with your rod cast. Who knows, you may even come back with dinner.
All you need is some paper, crayons or pencils and you are almost there. Take the children for a walk around the park or even just up and down the street to find some fantastically shaped leaves. Put the paper over them and rub gently with the crayon.
Visit the public library
Over school holidays there are usually some types of free activities at the public library. You can also teach your children how to borrow items such as books, toys and even DVDs.
Grab some of the adults older, disused clothing - including shoes and handbags - and let the children put on a fashion show with a difference. You could even film it for them to review later when they settle.
Afternoon tea party
Get out the crockery and teapot, makes some dainty sandwiches, fairy bread and biscuits and sit down to enjoy a quiet moment as you all enjoy afternoon tea. You may even want to dress for the occasion.