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Holidays are coming up (well in the Northern hemisphere) and some of my friends asked me for tips to keep their little ones entertained. Not only during the flight or in the car, but also in restaurants which are maybe not kid friendly or while visiting relatives which don’t have any toys. That’s when I usually fall back on so called “busy bags/boxes” (after my favourite books). A busy bag is a little bag which you prepare prior to travelling and contains everything to keep your little one happy for let’s say 15 to 30 minutes. Nothing messy, nothing to clean up, rather cheap DIY and usually at a level so she can do most of it on her own. Which doesn’t mean that you’re not allowed to join in ;-).

So here are my favourite busy bags (besides crayons and paper) to choose from:

  • busy wallet is great for a trip to a restaurant as it fits in your or the little one’s bag;
  • if you’re going by car, try a Lego Travel Box or here is a bag version;
  • if your child is a bit older you can try a colour sudoku;
  • at gift of curiosity I found a summer printable pack. You can print out all of it or just some selected pages, I printed some of the pages on thicker paper to make them a bit more sturdy;
  • with wasabi tape in three or four colours and some paper, our daughter can “paint” almost everything;
  • and last but not least soap bubbles :-).

If you’re less on the DIY side and more on the “I seriously have two left hands and no printer at home and honestly, I’m just to lazy and/or busy” side, then try those:

  • stickers “en route” from Djeco – I bought those and a plain sketch-pad, added some basic drawings as inspiration (a tree, a house, a lake and an elephant) and of she goes;
  • a funny take on colouring pictures;
  • colourful collages – I took them as inspiration to cut some coloured paper in stripes, triangles and circles of different sizes, put them in a zip bag, added some paper and a glue and the “collages busy bag” was ready for take off. You can also use scrapbook/craft punches to get different shapes to add a little variety;
  • these or these figures for threading are a good choice when visiting relatives, as I wouldn’t like to crawl on the floor of an airplane to look for one of those tiny things which felt down (the same holds true for any puzzle);
  • if you don’t want to take a book and you “used up” the whole airplane for “I spy” then these cards come in handy. It says from 6 to 10 years, but I’ve found already 10 (from 30 cards) which will also work for my 3.5 year old. There are also “find the difference”, “”what’s missing” and “connect the dots” sets available.

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photo credit: Entrer dans le rêve via photopin cc