keeping a 3 year old occupied


What to do when the sun don’t shine and you can’t go to the park…….

……try and encourage creativity?

Niblet is not a big fan of painting, making or getting dirty, really.

Our painting sessions involve him deciding he wants to paint, me taking the time to get everything out & sort out a suitable place for painting, him painting a few splodges, then announcing he’s had enough!!

As a frustrated maker myself, I find it hard that he doesn’t want to do creative stuff, but just wants to play Fireman Sam or cars (which I struggle with playing for more than about 10 minutes, then feel like a crap mum because I just don’t want to play these things)

However, he did make a couple of things last week. We went into Manchester to check out the offerings from Dig the City

scan0008We stopped off at the small children’s playground, which Niblet really liked, so much so that we had to return to the train station via the playground too. Then we went to look at some interesting floral arrangements/topiary and have a go at making a butterfly. The butterfly making was good, Niblet directed more than did, but still he was interested and tried to help a bit. A great use for old crisp packets (another thing I am now saving, much to Hubbie’s dismay!!)


Then we headed up to the National Trust ‘treehouse’ (a shed) and joined in with some of the 50 things to do before you’re 11 3/4 activities. Niblet helped build a den, went for a barefoot walk over a variety of surfaces, planted some seeds, with much persuasion, made a kite. We did have lots of tired screaming after this, as there was no wind to make it fly!!


I really like the idea of this adventure scrapbook from the National Trust, even though I know it’s a marketing ploy. Niblet got 3 stamps and a sticker in his book for the activities he did, but would not entertain the idea of making a mud pie.

He’s a 3 year old boy!!!

Isn’t that what they would most love to do???

On Monday, it rained torrentially on and off all day, so our planned trip to the park was cut short, so short we only managed to open the front door!! After a morning playing cars, I was losing the will to live. So a quick trip to the shop yielded the latest Octonauts magazine, always a hit with Niblet. We did lots of stickers (something that he really does love –  sticking stickers on paper), avoided any of the colouring and we came to a couple of pages advocating handprints. I was really pleased to see them and Niblet even seemed quite keen, so we duly did those, but only the ones in the magazine. I tried to get him to do more on paper, but no go.


Later on he wanted to make a finish line for his cars to use to race, out of paper. This then turned into wanting me to make him a racetrack. We have a number of large cardboard boxes, given to use by a friend for making into robots or some such thing, so 1 of those duly started being turned into a racetrack. This he was happy to try and paint with me, result!!


I managed to get him to help blob on some paint for the crowd. Then he mentioned finish lines again and starting lights, and my mind went into overdrive.


None of this was dry enough for him to actually use it on Monday before going off to bed, so I promised it would all be ready when he got back from nursery on Tuesday lunchtime. Monday night was a frenzy of painting, cutting & sticking.




He was really excited all the way home from nursery and the look on his face when he opened the door to the lounge was worth all the effort. He has played with it loads over the past 2 days, but I’m not sure how long it will last or where I can keep it for future use!!

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I have recently become aware of adverts appearing at the bottom of my posts. These are nothing to do with me, I don’t know why they are there or indeed how to get rid of them. I apologise.

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