As a stay at home mom of a toddler, I am faced with a high energy mini human from the moment he opens his eyes until he closes them at night all day, every day. When I know that we are staying home and not going out, I at least like to plan one thing fun for us to do before turning on YouTube Kids (on our good days). These are Ezra’s favorite activities from age 1 to almost 3 years old.
*This post contains affiliate links so you know where I get my stuff. (please hide my Amazon packages from husband…lol)
Messy play “cooking” with different dry ingredients that I have on hand.
This ball pit kept Ezra entertained for quite some time while I folded laundry and cooked!
I got the ball pit on a flash deal, but here is a similar one. I just put a thick fluffy blanket in it an filled it with toys.
Pom Pom play! I just bought a bunch of giant pom poms and gathered ice cube trays, tongs, and a K-Cup carousel and he had so much fun!
Shoe box, paper towel roll, toilet paper roll, painters tape parking garage for all his cars!
Painting snow! In the winter, I will bring in some snow, fill up little cups with water and food coloring, and let him go to town! I am a HUGE fan of messy, unorganized play. It just allows him to explore and discover ideas for himself.
So this is probably Ezra’s all time favorite activity. I had the Tupperware on hand, but you can use a baking sheet or a similar lidded container. I bought kinetic sand and little rocks for his little construction vehicles to dig up. I love kinetic sand. It doesn’t make a huge mess, and even clumps together just in case he gets sand everywhere (which he most definitely will).
Making a “road” with green painters tape!
Ezra loves baking with me, so we’ll make cookies, cupcakes, or a bunch of muffins for daddy to bring to work!
Dress up! He doesn’t really have costumes, we just use what we have around the house (like these are his pajamas and sometimes we play blanket ghosts).
Play dough, dry spaghetti, fruit loop “threading” activity
Sensory rice! I’ll keep some rice just for Ezra in a gallon bag, and let him scoop, pour, and play. This one is pretty messy, but super fun!
Balloon basketball! Pretty self explanatory… He loves to show me his “skills.” Buying a pack of punching balloons will keep your little one happily entertained for a long time.
Making a portrait wall! I just hooked up my laptop to the printer and printed a bunch of pictures for him to color and hang with different color washi tape. His favorite part was grabbing the paper out of the printer to see what picture I printed for him.
Cardboard fort! I have enough Amazon boxes to build a mansion. I like to make our cardboard forts big enough so I can fit in it because I know he will ask me to join him, and mama likes forts, too.
Cardboard car! We used scissors, paper plates, markers, tape, and a brad to attach his “steering wheel.” Ezra is only two, but I like to teach and monitor him cutting with baby scissors. This is a time-consuming activity because he will help build it and then play with it for days.
Or in the winter, we play in the snow! For a little while anyway.
This idea is kind of pricey, but definitely a FAVORITE! Water balloons! You’re gonna want to buy the big pack…lol
When the weather’s nice, we’ll have a picnic outside… or we’ll lay a towel on the living room floor and have an indoor picnic when the weather is cold or just plain nasty.
These are my FAVORITE activities that have been a hit with my child, so I hope you find some joy in them, too 🙂 I know I love to see my lil man smile!