Although it can be my idea of hell, soft play is a great little place for youngsters to flourish. They learn to make friends with other children and to do things like take turns and share. They also get exercise and a space to let go and be as loud and messy as they want. It is a place you get to be a child too and run round chasing them remembering the fun of your youth. It’s somewhere you can go and take a back seat and just sit watching them play and having fun. Where you haven’t got to run round and can just breath for a little bit. As they get older you can watch from further away until they’re big kids and you could have the luxury of a hot drink while they play in peace. (I cannot wait for this day). I
t can be a place to go with other mummy friends while the kids play together you can talk. You get out of the house and you get grown up conversation while your child has a fun experience. I love watching my little guy play and have fun smiling as he realises where he is and runs off to play. I love playing with him and racing him down slides or playing in the ball pit with him and showing him how to use and play with new things. It’s a great activity no matter the weather too, because it means Elijah can keep dry and warm instead of wet at the park on bad weather days. The thing I love the most is that it keeps Elijah healthy and happy and I’m up for anything like that.
Being two nothing entertains him for long so finding toys he picks up over and over again can be a little hard. So here’s a list of something’s he and his friends like which may help others with finding toys there little ones may like.
Little figures. Be it a hey duggee set, teletubies or a set of Dinosaurs Elijah absolutely loves them. He loves lining them up, putting them in things, pretending they’re playing and just holding them. They’re great for imagination and playing alone or with others.
Animals, Elijah adores his sets of animals and he loves lining them up and naming each one. He loves animals and adores playing and singing to them. We use them for themed play and playing in play doh and sand it’s something that never gets boring.
Wooden kitchen. I brought this for Christmas last year and it’s his and his friends favourite toy. He plays with it constantly every day and every child who comes over does too. He likes pretending to cook, hide things, wash things and play with his toys on it.
Shopping trolley and food. Elijah loves playing with the fake food and putting it in his trolled and pushing it around pretending his shopping.
Lego, the type for toddlers. He loves building towers and knocking them down. He also loves building blocks and stickler bricks.
Stretchy toys. He loves pulling them and stretching them and the texture.
Trains and cars. He adores these and younger and older children love them too.
Yesterday looking for something to entertain my little bundle of energy I remembered I had brought some plastic baubles to make. I got out the arts and crafts sheet and put Elijahs apron on and we got to work.
We had some bits left over from our sensory bottles we’ve made before (I’ll do a blog post later on that). So we had sequins, balls, beads and glitter to use. Elijah enjoyed filling up the baubles and used lots of different colours. We discussed the textures, the items and the number we where putting in counting as we did. Elijah loves this and was able to exercise his pincer grab and work on his hand eye coordination. The bits where small so easier to pick up.
A quick activity which was cheep and fun and very Christmassy. When we get our tree down next week we have three lovely new baubles to put on the tree!
Want to do it yourself? We brought the baubles from tiger for 1 pound each. Glitter was a pack of four for 1 pound, sequins 1 pound, beads and balls 1 pound each also which can be found in most supermarkets and craft shops.
Living only a twenty minuite drive to the seaside is something I’ll always be greatfull for. If the weather is nice in the summer it’s only a short drive to beach and there are quite a few beaches around us.
Even in the winter we wrap up warm and breath in that fresh sea air. Having a run on the beach or riding a bike/trike is just as much fun no matter the weather. We’ll spend more time inside on the amusements playing on claw machines and 2p machines. I’ve been lucky to win three toys on them recently so maybe my streak is over and I should avoid them for a while lol! Elijah loves to play on the 2p machines and can easily put 3 pounds down without getting bored.
We love watching the ocean and collecting stones and throwing them in the ocean (even if Elijahs doesn’t go very far). We enjoy watching dogs running and playing and spotting things going by. We love in the summer taking out shoes off and walking in the sand and sometimes paddling in the water. It bad weather we love dressing in our rain coats and wellies and jumping in puddles on the pier. We love watching the ocean no matter the weather but we live it most in windy weather because it’s so fast and beautiful.
We like to go for strolls down the beach too so often will bring Elijahs buggy for when he gets tired of walking for a while and we’ll get lunch or bring a lunch with us and make a day of it. Do you leave near a beach?
The weather is getting colder and with Christmas soon approaching a easy fun (albeit messy) activity is to make Christmas cards. Using hand and feet and a bit of patience you can use your little ones feet to paint a card.
What you need. Card. You can get cards with envelopes from online which is what we did to save the stress after looking in town a lot at the ridiculous prices for a sheet of card. You’ll also need paint and paintbrushes . Also a pen for writing.
Start by letting little ones paint a sheet of paper or a canvas for a gift for someone aswell. This enables them to get the excitement out of the way to paint and make a mess.
Secondly paint your child’s feet and then hold and place card under their feet hold their foot down quickly and pushing as you do it and take paper away quickly trying not to smudge. Your little one may end up loving this activity and ask for more painting of the feet over and over. With the footprints you can make Christmas trees,snowmen or reindeers. You can also paint hands too and make penguins or a Santa’s hat. You’ll just need to the painting/ drawing of faces and details.
Not only is it a great activity but also a lovely gift. A card someone may want on their mantelpiece for years to come. It is also way cheeper than buying individual cards for everyone in your family.
For Elijahs second birthday we have brought him a balance bike and a matching helmet to keep his head safe! Although his birthday is not till the fifteenth we had to let him have a test drive first!
A balance bike works by a child standing and pushing the bike or sitting and using their feet to push the bike. There are no pedals so it’s easy for little ones to learn how to balance and steer. The balance bikes are recommended as a alternative to stabilisers so that when it comes to riding a bike with peddles they require very little practice before learning. It’s great exercise working on their coordination and muscle memory and great fun too!
We took Elijah to a nearby forest walk, the best thing about living in Suffolk is all the nature walks around us! Elijah was excited to sit on the bike then nervous when he realised it moves. He quickly got over the nerves and loved it and learnt to do it by standing and had lots of fun! He enjoyed pushing and steering and kept asking to go on his bike when we came to a hill. He also loved the helmet and stood still while we put it on which I was shocked at. I think having a design they like is what swayed him. He loves lion king so we brought the bike in a lion king design and helmet too. We ordered both to Halfords and cost 46 for both. They are so worth the money and can be used till 4! I can’t wait to take him out for his birthday on his new bike after his birthday! Because it’ll be wrapped up again as he will of forgotten about it then and know no different haha! It’s a great family activity as well to take him and teach him and when he’s got the hang of it we could all ride bikes together!
Following a lovely day pumpkin picking we where ten minutes away from a garden centre (poplar nurseries) we love visiting as it has a miniature railway! We decided to go grab some lunch and browse the shops in the garden centre.
We went for lunch where we shared a pasta, chips and garlic bread. Elijah wanted a scone so a scone and some of our dinner he had! I had the most beautiful hot chocolate. As always it was really tasty and filled us right up! The railways station is just outside and is very cute they have steam trains too! They’re perfect size for children and under 4s travel free. The adults and older children are a pound a go or ten pounds for a pass of ten which we brought last time and still have turns! They have statues and flowers to look out for as you go around which Elijah loved!
Afterwards we stopped in the Christmas sections and looked at the lights and ornaments and it was so beautiful it made me feel warm inside! We found a door sign and bauble with Elijahs name on the first thing I have found with his name on in a shop ever! So we of course had to buy it. They have lovely food, cakes, chocolates, toys and home bits and we always buy something nice whenever we go.
We always live going to this little garden centre as it’s a day out when you get food. The foods always super delicious and out the door busy but if you reserve a table you’ll get a very nice meal! The train conductors are fun and lovely to everyone and they try their best to make it more exciting for the children! They play their whistles and shout all aboard and make the kids wave as they go! The outfits and the decoration of the area is lovely too very old fashioned and cute. You don’t have to pay entry either only for things you buy and each turn on the train so a good day out overall and it’s so big you can be there for hours.