Have you heard of Busy Bags before? They were a new revelation to me! I mean I’ve heard (and seen, and done) of packing a small tote with quiet toys to keep small ones eneteretained on a trip or durring church etc, but this is differant. Essentialy, in this form, a busy bag is a ziplock bag (typically gallon sized, but I found most of mine fit in quart sized bags) with one specific interative item that your child(ren) can do on their own or with you (or each other) to keep them quiet and busy – and they usually have some sort of educational aspect to them. I think I’m in love!
So, a busy bag is the best of a quiet book, seporated out into idividual activites, and can easily be picked up one at a time or a whole handful, shoved in your purse as you walk out the door and pulled out when your wiggly kid is starting to become an annoyance to those around while your at dinner, in church, or anywhere else where being quiet and waiting is a challenge. Or, you can set them all out in a basket and let your kids explore them at their leasure (or when “MOOOOM I’m BOOOOORED” comes out of their mouth) or incorporate into homeschool time or just structred playtime. Seriously, these rocked my world and I started “pinning” EVERY.SINGLE.ONE that came across my pinterest feed. For the longest time I wanted a quiet book for Inara but wouldn’t pay the price for something I could make myself, but then I never did make it (go figure :-p) then I saw these awesome Restuarant Kits over on Whimsy Love (which we’ll actually be doing in MOPS this year) but couldn’t quite see Inara using them well and wasn’t sure what to put in that would keep her enteretained and didn’t make a mess, noise or take up a bunch of space. Then I saw a few mentions of busy bags, then I found busy bag swaps (which I’m determined to take part in at some point) and then my pinterest obsession.
SO all this to say, in preporation for our upcoming trip to Portland which will involve airplain travel, a wedding where Inara will have to sit quietly and calmly, several meals out, and who knows what else where she’ll be where she will need to be a good calm child – or at least pretent to be one, which is going to be a HUGE chalange for an energy filled, spaztastic, boustrious, sprited little girl, and an even bigger stress point for her mommy, I started making busy bags last night. (holy cow mother of all run-on sentances Batman!) So, I thought before I showed you what I did, I’d share a round up with you so you could get some ideas too – plus it’ll keep it all contained in one place for me lol!
Other ideas that I saw or read but now can’t find pictures or links to are:
Nuts & Bolts sort and attach
Pattern Matching pipe cleaners
I’m super excited to be trying these out – I made 5 the other day and tried most of them out durring our bonus homeschool time on Friday. Some I was surprised how much Inara liked, others I was surprised how disinterested she was – which has been par for the course with homeschooling in general. I’ll update back periodically with what we’ve done, what she liked, or what new ones I’ve discovered. 🙂
Have a great weekend!
Straw threading onto pipe cleaners