I was in Brighton visiting my sister and her family over half term week. I have done this for several years now and love looking after my two nephews and spending time with them. This year is more challenging as I have my 17 month old daughter in tow too. Plus my oldest nephew is now 10, almost 11. Entertaining three such wide age groups isn’t easy but not impossible.
1.Homework- The first amazing thing that happened during this week was that my oldest nephew asked to do homework. Who would have thought this would ever happen.
2. 500 Words – We wrote stories for BBC Radio 2 500 words competition. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p00rfvk1 This was done whilst my daughter played with a toy cooker and kept our appetites at bay whilst writing.
3. Board Games – It turns out that the game Pop Up Pirate, despite being for age 4 plus, was a hit for all 3 of them to play. At 17 months old, she needed assistance from me but all three were excited to see when the pirate would pop up.
4.Playing Together – My Nephews were happy to play with my daughter some of the time. It is lovely to watch them all playing together, reading books together and watching tv together. It was amazing to see my older nephew be so aware of her and stop her getting in to danger and realise he needed to turn the tv off from his computer games when she is around.
5. Parks – The park is always a winner. Something for every one in the playground. Swings for my daughter, climbing frame for the 8 year old, zip wire for the 10 year old and a merry go round for all of them.
6. A half Term Film – The cinema and the Lego Movie were a winner for the older boys when my husband was still there at the begining of the week to look after our daughter. Luckily, I can still find films to suit a 7 year old and 10 year old.
7. Lego Shop – Surprisingly, the Lego shop was a hit. My older nephew was looking for what he wanted for his birthday, whilst my daughter got to play with duplo.
8. Museums – The Brighton Toy Museum, despite being small, was a surprising hit with all of them. It would be best visited with a grandparent who remembers the toys from their child hood but we still were able to enjoy the museum, especially watching the trains go round.
9. Brighton Beach – Despite being cold this was a trip that we all enjoyed, except that my daughter was asleep by the time we got there. We threw stones in to the sea and played at the beach side playground.
10. A restaurant treat – Wagamamas was a hit with all three children.
If I go back for the Feb half term break next year, I may drive instead of go by train. Being able to leave Brighton and visit say a farm would have also been fun for everyone but despite being this I surprised myself in finding enough things to do that kept everyone happy.
I suppose the moral of the story should be nothing is impossible, just a challenge worth achieving.