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15 Adorable Parenting Tips To Entertain Your Kids All Day Long

15 Adorable Parenting Tips To Entertain Your Kids All Day Long

Our little ones can be an endless source of joy and pride. I don’t know about you, but one look at the picture of my little rascal is enough to get me to calm down and keep a cool head during a particularly stressful day at work. The thing is, even though we enjoy spending time with them, kids are just on a whole other level when it comes to energy. They can run around all day long, and their attention span is not their strong side. For these reasons it can be difficult to channel all their energy in a more creative and constructive way, and manage to keep them entertained throughout the day. Well, different people have found some very interesting parenting hacks over the years. Here is a list of fun activities that will help you keep your children busy and engaged until bedtime.

1. Create your own coloring book

Toddler with a coloring book

    Kids love to paint and draw, and if there is a story behind the pictures and they have to be careful to color in the right lines then you are helping them develop their cognitive skills and fine motor functions, as well as keeping them busy. You can draw up different scenes freehand on a piece of paper or you can use pictures worked over in Photoshop to create some awesome scenes for your coloring book.

    2. Hold a drawing/painting contest

    Baby covered in paint

      A blank piece of paper gives your children much more artistic freedom than a coloring book and it’s much easier to set up a drawing or painting contest. Write down a few themes, animals and objects on small pieces of paper, mix them up and then draw one. Everyone has to draw whatever comes up, including mommy or daddy, and then you move on to the next one.

      3. Create art from everyday items

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        A particularly optimistic crafting project may require you to shop for supplies, but there are tons of simple household items that can be used in unique and interesting ways. You can use bubble wrap to make cool patterns by dipping it in paint and applying it to an object or you can paint old empty bottles to make vases.

        4. Decorate the living room for an exciting party

        Throwing a childrens party

          Throw a small party for the whole family, but have the kids help you out with planning and decorating beforehand. By the time they are through with decorating and dressing up, you’ll have plenty of time to serve up some juice and snacks. Then just play some music and let them tire themselves out by dancing.

          5. Build a Lego town

          Pile of legos

            Legos are incredibly versatile and can serve as building blocks for just about any project. Gather your little ones and design a basic outline of a town. Then start planning the important administrative building and the homes for some of the other toys. You can come up with some back stories for the different toys as well – e.g. why a naughty soldier is in jail or why the dinosaur and Bratz doll live in the same building. This can be hours of fun.

            6. Turn old cardboard boxes into race cars

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            Kid in cardboard box car

              We all know that babies and toddlers often find big cardboard boxes more amusing than even the shiniest and fluffiest toy in the world. You can combine this natural fascination with huge boxes and some fun scenarios by turning them into cars. Draw some wheels and lights and cut out windows. Give them a Frisbee for a steering wheel and pretend you are racing, or just driving around town, naming the things that you see as you travel.

              7. Organize a stage performance

              Kids playing in professions

                Help the kids come up with a script for an adventurous play and then have them set the stage, dress up and perform for you. It will take them quite a bit of time just to set up the stage, rehearse and find the right wardrobe, and then you can look forward to a fun play that you can record. If they are feeling very creative you can even have two shows that day.

                8. Make some Halloween costumes

                Halloween kids

                  With Halloween right around the corner it only seems fitting to start preparing some great costumes. Get the kids involved by letting them choose the materials and make drawings of how they would like their costume to look. They will get very excited and will gladly help you out, doing any small task that you assign them with a sense of pride. This fun project makes the children feel important and sparks their creative side.

                  9. Play “busy little ants clean up their home”

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                  Toddlers cleaning up

                    Most parents have trouble finding a good balance between work, household chores and spending quality time with their kids. If you create a fun game around cleaning the house you can have your little sweeties take on a decent part of the workload and stay fairly entertained in the process. My daughter loves animals and animal documentaries, so we like to pretend that we are a colony of busy little ants that are preparing our home for the winter. It is also a good way to let the wife take a much deserved break, as she becomes the ant queen who gives out orders.

                    10. Play some online games that develop memory and cognitive skills

                    Baby working on laptop

                      A child’s growing mind is like a sponge that soaks up all sorts of knowledge from the world around it. That’s why it is important to nurture both creative and clean logical thinking. These new generations are incredibly tech-savvy, so I find that it’s best to use a tablet to play one of the many great logical puzzles and memory games that can help develop your child’s cognitive abilities. The kids will be glued to the screen and will want to play over and over to get a better score.

                      11. Open up a bakery in your kitchen

                      Children baking in the kitchen

                        Taking care of a family means feeding a lot of hungry mouths, and it’s not exactly the easiest job in the world when said hungry mouths keep running around aimlessly or telling you how bored they are. Both boys and girls like to get their hands dirty and create, so with a bit of imagination and some dress up, you can have these eager little helpers work in your newly opened kitchen bakery. You can spend hours at a time working on different cookies or cakes, or just letting them play around with some dough while you prepare the snacks. In the end everyone gets a nice treat. 

                        12. Build a fort and hide

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                        Girl in a fort

                          There are very few things that are as exciting and fun as making a fort indoors. It’s a simple affair, although there are some very creative examples, and requires no more than a big blanket, a few pillows, a broomstick or length of rope and a bit of furniture rearranging. The magical fort can be decorated to taste and warm milk and cookies served inside – perhaps after a busy day at the kitchen bakery. It is also a great setting for storytelling.   

                          13. Hold a wrestling tournament and play different characters

                          Boys wrestling with dad

                            This one is particularly fun for boys, but I know a certain little girl who can perform a very good arm bar and likes to wrestle around with her dad for hours. To keep things interesting you can come up with several different characters and hold a tournament. Each of you will choose a character to play for a given time – just like you would in a video game – and the winners get to go on to the final stages. It’s best to let the little ones win at the end. They could even join forces against the main baddy played by yourself.

                            14. Engage in some storytelling

                            Gru reading a story

                              Be it in a magnificent fort, around the living room table or gathered in a circle on the floor, storytelling always fascinates kids and they like to join in as well. You can read stories from a book, and do your best to make up interesting voices for the characters, or you can do some ad lib and make up a story on the go using suggestions from the eager crowd. The kids can also be encouraged to come up with their own stories, suggest plot twists or make up funny characters.  

                              15. When all else fails, dress up and watch your favorite cartoons

                              Girl watching TV

                                After a long day the kids will get a bit tired, but they’ll still want to do something fun before bed time. The go-to solution for many parents is watching cartoons. It’s best to choose a couple of their favorite cartoons and have them dress up as their favorite characters for movie night. Just make sure they don’t stay up past their bedtime – you can give them some warm milk or hot chocolate.

                                These cool parenting hacks should keep your lovely little kids occupied and entertained throughout the day, while providing enough creative stimulus for their developing minds.

                                More by this author

                                Ivan Dimitrijevic

                                Ivan is the CEO and founder of a digital marketing company. He has years of experiences in team management, entrepreneurship and productivity.

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                                Last Updated on September 16, 2019

                                How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

                                How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

                                You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

                                We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

                                The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

                                Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

                                1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

                                Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

                                For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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                                • (1) Research
                                • (2) Deciding the topic
                                • (3) Creating the outline
                                • (4) Drafting the content
                                • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
                                • (6) Revision
                                • (7) etc.

                                Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

                                2. Change Your Environment

                                Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

                                One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

                                3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

                                Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

                                Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

                                My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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                                Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

                                4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

                                If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

                                Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

                                I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

                                5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

                                I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

                                Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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                                As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

                                6. Get a Buddy

                                Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

                                I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

                                7. Tell Others About Your Goals

                                This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

                                For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

                                8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

                                What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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                                9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

                                If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

                                Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

                                10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

                                Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

                                Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

                                11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

                                At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

                                Reality check:

                                I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

                                More About Procrastination

                                Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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