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With heavy weekdays filled with jobs, school runs and schedules, the weekend comes as a relief for many families who have children. A chance to leave the timetable behind, the weekend can be an opportunity to re-programme and spend some much needed time enjoying each other’s company in the home environment. With two days to unwind and relax, there are an array of nourishing activities which you can enjoy as a family. Perhaps you would like to learn about healthy eating together or enhance your child’s creativity, our list of activities can help your weekend develop into a happy, childhood memory for years to come.

small white house

Experiment with Healthy Eating Cooking

According to the UK website Change 4 Life, around half the sugar we consume originates from sugary drinks and snacks. By opting for fruit snacks, you can reduce sugar intake and contribute to your child’s five a day. Creating fruit skewers or faces on plates can help to inspire healthy eating in a fun and educational way. By seeing the fruit come out of the skin (not a packet), it introduces children to the source of foods and can help them to develop their food palette. You can go beyond snacks and try some easy, healthy cooking recipes together. Change 4 Life provides some options for you to try. Not only will you have fun, but it will also solve the issue of dinner!

Learn Origami

Origami is a fascinating and challenging activity which originates from ancient Japan around 6th-century AD. It is a fascinating art and can occupy the mind through its intricate detail and precision. Purchase a book or look online for instructions if you have never tried before. Origmaiinstructions.com is a useful site for this. You could re-use old paper which is no longer needed to practise with too.

Try Gardening

Head out to the garden and pick an area that the children can look after. Perhaps purchase some plants, or seeds and teach them how to plant and grow them. It is an excellent activity because they can watch the plant develop over some time and take note of their progress. You can choose anything to nurture, including flowers, little trees, vegetables and herbs. Perhaps some of them will be used in your cooking! If you do not have access to a garden, window boxes are a great alternative which do not depend on seasonal weather to grow them such as cress, basil and parsley.

purple flowers in the ground

Enjoy Star Gazing

A magical activity for the evening, this is a lovely way to learn about the beautiful world around us, as well as introducing a sense of serenity to the weekend. If you live near a hill or a beach, you are in luck as these are the two best places to seek the stars. Make sure to take a blanket, a warm coat, as well as some delicious snacks and beverages to accompany the evening. To educate yourselves on the sky, there are several astronomy based apps which are dedicated to providing accurate information about the night sky, including star constellations. The Sky View and Star Walker 2 are amongst the most recommended apps.

Go Fruit Picking

The UK website, Change 4 Life suggests that children are active for minimum one hour a day. Walking outdoors can be an inspiring way to encourage this. Try finding a local area that is renowned for its blossoming flora and fauna and fun trails. Depending on the time of year, a fun activity to encourage is fruit picking. Strawberries tend to appear in May, apples in August. Blackberries are an especially suitable fruit of choice for this endeavour and appear in September. By contacting the National Trust, or browsing on their website, they can recommend the best places to go. Of course, you need to be aware of precisely what you are picking and ensure that fruit is washed before it is consumed. If you are uncertain, head to a farm which offers this type of activity.

red and green strawberries

Make a Family Tree

For some, being aware of our heritage is a particular part of ourselves we may like to cherish. Delve into the past and help create a family tree. This creative activity can help to visualise the family connections and origins, as well as spark intrigue through stories of relatives.

Mindfulness Practise

Since 2007 the Mindfulness in Schools Project (MiSP)has been working to introduce mindfulness in schools. Mindfulness is a technique used to acknowledge and focus on feelings in the present instead of feeling anxiety over past or future happenings. It is used in educational environments as a way to help children improve their emotional wellbeing and confidence. There is no reason why you can’t introduce it in home life too, and it can be used as a way to bond and understand one another. For more information on the effects of parenting and mindfulness, our journal Mindfulness and Meditiation for Children can provide further information.

If hectic schedules are overtaking your life and you need a break, our yoga and mindfulness retreats may be a great option to help rejuvenate yourself. Here at Balance Holidays, we have a selection of bespoke packages including, yoga holidays in France, Italy and Croatia which can be personally tailored to your individual needs.