As Easter approaches, thoughts turn to the school holidays and how to best occupy children during the break. Whether you need activities for the whole fortnight or just a few things to pass the time over Easter weekend, we’ve got plenty of ideas and inspiration.
We know that the British weather can be somewhat unpredictable, so we have gathered together fun activities that you can undertake right in the heart of the home.
Best of all, each of our suggestions on how to entertain the kids in the kitchen requires little to no preparation, creates minimal mess and can be done at the kitchen table or worktop. Egg-cellent!
Most children will happily roll up their sleeves and get on with whisking, mixing and rolling, especially if they know they’ll get to eat the results of their efforts at the end. Getting kids involved in cooking at an early age has a wealth of benefits, including increased coordination skills and giving them confidence.
There are lots of simple recipes to choose from but we’ve opted for two of our favourites which are especially straightforward – and exceptionally tasty.
You only need five ingredients to make these crisp biscuits: cubed butter, sugar, an egg, flour and vanilla extract. Make the dough according to the instructions here and roll out to the thickness of a £1 coin ready for stamping out the biscuits. If you haven’t got a bunny-shaped cutter then don’t panic. Use a gingerbread man cutter, then turn each shape upside down and cut off the arms. The head becomes the bunny’s bottom, the legs become its ears. Bake for 12-15 minutes then pop on a mini marshmallow or a blob of icing for a fluffy tail!
There are even fewer ingredients for this classic Easter treat, which makes use of breakfast cereal, golden syrup, mars bars and butter. Melt the butter, syrup and mars bars over a low heat and then add rice crispies or cornflakes, whichever you have to hand. Mix to thoroughly coat and dollop into paper cases, topping each one with a mini chocolate egg or two.
Get Crafty in the kitchen
From bunny ears and Easter hats to door wreaths and table decorations, it’s possible to keep every age group occupied with a range of crafts. And don’t worry – there’s no need to make things exceptionally messy.
For a simple activity cut out the middle of a paper plate and decorate the outside with tissue paper, coloured card and felt tip pens. Or try our other ideas which can be adapted depending on the age of the children.
Some paint and a few household objects are all you need to create a set of colourful, hand-printed Easter cards. Make stamps by pinching and bending toilet roll inners into different shapes. Push them gently into rounded ovals for Easter eggs, pinch in at one side to make a tulip shape, or fix two pointed ovals and a circle together to form the head and long ears of an Easter bunny. Simply dip the edges in paint to print.
Make beautiful marbled Easter eggs with just oil, food colouring and vinegar – and if you blow the contents out first, they’ll last for years. To blow your eggs, simply make a hole in each end using a drawing pin and blow out the yolk and white, rinse and leave to dry. When it comes to colouring your eggs, first dunk them in a mix of food colouring, vinegar and hot water to create a solid base colour. Then choose a darker colour for the marbling and mix this with a small amount of water. Add a tablespoon of olive oil and swirl with a skewer before placing your egg in the oily water and rolling it around for a few minutes. To finish, wipe each egg gently with some kitchen roll to remove any excess oil.
Easter is a time of new growth and green shoots, so it’s the perfect occasion to introduce your children to gardening. Even if you don’t have any outdoor space it’s possible to grow herbs, tomatoes and other salad vegetables indoors on windowsills, and now is the ideal time to start the seedlings off.
All you need for this is a small amount of compost, as well as some yoghurt pots from the recycling. You don’t even need tomato seeds if you’ve got tomatoes in the fridge! Fill a pot with compost and water well, then slice a tomato into 1cm slices. Place one on the surface and cover lightly with more compost. Cover the pot with clingfilm or a clear plastic bag, and place on a warm, sunny windowsill. In 7-10 days, you should see the first green shoots.
Grow cress heads
Combining eggs and gardening, cress heads are a really quick and easy way to get growing. You’ll need some clean, empty eggshells, kitchen roll or cotton wool and cress seeds. Get the children to decorate or draw faces on the eggshells and then put the kitchen roll or cotton wool in the bottom of them. Dampen it, sprinkle with the seeds and leave on a windowsill. In a few days, your eggshells should have a crazy new hairstyle!
Get a kitchen makeover
Looking to get a new look in your kitchen? Why not get the kids involved?
Many people take the Easter bank holiday break as a time to do a spring clean or a little DIY to improve their homes, and if your kids are a little older, there’s no reason not to get them involved.
Spring clean your kitchen with the kids
There’s no reason why the whole family can’t be involved in a kitchen spruce up.
The key to a successful kitchen spring clean, which will keep your space uncluttered in the long term is firstly purging any items that you don’t want or need anymore, and secondly, making sure that everything in your kitchen has a “home”.
Start by taking everything out of your kitchen cupboards. Older children can help by looking at dates on those discarded tins and cans, and making a pile of “keep or bin”. For younger children, getting them to help wipe down lower level kitchen cabinets helps them to feel involved too.
Then look at grouping your items together. For example, make sure that you put items that are used everyday in easy to reach spaces in the kitchen, whereas for those gadgets you only get out occasionally, consider if they can be put in higher kitchen cabinets, or even in another space.
Get the whole family involved in this activity, and not only will the job take half the time – when everyone has been involved in the process of reorganising where your kitchen items “live” they are far more likely to help to keep the kitchen uncluttered in the longer term too.
Update your kitchen
For some, the long bank holiday weekend provides an opportunity to make some home updates. And the kitchen is often top of the priority list.
Choosing to update your kitchen needn’t be a mammoth task. Adding a lick of paint, or some new kitchen cabinet handles can give your kitchen a fresh new look. Get the family involved in choosing colours and styles.
If you’re looking to make more of a change that won’t break the bank, consider updating your kitchen cabinet doors. This gives you the opportunity to bring a new style to your kitchen without the hassle and cost of a full replacement kitchen.
Indoor activities don’t always have to be quiet and calm. Push back the table and chairs and shake things up a bit with our fun ideas for getting everyone moving, whatever the weather.
Just be sure to turn off any hot appliances such as the oven, and remove any trip hazards from your kitchen space.
If you decorated hardboiled eggs, put them to good use in a game of egg rolling, either across the kitchen floor or even along a worktop. Make skittles out of old plastic bottles or milk containers and compete to knock the most down. Use a plain egg as a ‘jack’ and see who can roll their egg closest in a game of boules. Or for younger children, simply see who can roll their egg the furthest.
No longer a lockdown-only activity, kitchen discos are a great way to get everyone on their feet. Dim the lights, or use a disco bulb if you have one, put on some tunes and hit the (kitchen) dancefloor. Dance offs are always likely, so make sure you’ve got a long stick (a broom will do) for the limbo and plenty of prizes for the winners!
However you like to enjoy your kitchen, if it’s time for a change, why not browse our range of full kitchen units and replacement doors.