BORED-NO-MORE-GAMES: Crack out your old favourites like Cluedo, Operation and Trivial Pursuit and introduce your kids to a regular family games night just like old times!

Picture: Tricia Watkinson
BORED-NO-MORE-GAMES: Crack out your old favourites like Cluedo, Operation and Trivial Pursuit and introduce your kids to a regular family games night just like old times! Picture: Tricia Watkinson

10 fun and quirky things to do at home (in isolation)

IF YOU'VE been under house arrest, whether self-inflicted or otherwise, you're probably only a couple of days away from giving yourself a bed sore from binge watching Stranger Things, Orange Is The New Black or Riverdale on Netflix.

We've developed a list of ten fun, simple and more productive ways to spend your time at home over the next few days to weeks while the world waits out COVID-19.

1. Dig out your old favourite board games

From Monopoly, to Trouble and of course the party favourite, Twister - everyone had a favourite board game growing up. Why not dig it out of storage and reintroduce regular family board game nights at home? If you don't have an official set plenty of companies have online versions you can print off at home or create something extra special together and make your very own game with cardboard, dice and an old deck or cards lying around the house. There's no limit to what you can come up with, just make sure you write the rules down somewhere to avoid a mutiny down the track.

It’s the perfect time for a wardrobe sort out! Picture: Mathew Farrell
It’s the perfect time for a wardrobe sort out! Picture: Mathew Farrell

2. Sort through your wardrobes and cupboards

With the Winter months just around the corner, South Burnett second-hand stores and op-shops are going to need warmer clothes and bedding soon. Have a sort through your belongings and if you haven't worn it in the past 12 months, chances are someone else is going to get more use out of it than you this Winter.

3. Get a little crafty!

There is not better way to spend an inside day than getting out the scissors, glue, paint, cardboard and glitter pens. This is the perfect time to teach your children that hand made is ALWAYS better than store bought and with Easter coming in a few weeks-time, it's a great opportunity to make friends and loved ones an Easter card, bonnet or basket to collect all your eggs on Good Sunday. Or if you want to do something a little more challenging, why not take a look on YouTube for a Bob Ross-inspired painting tutorial. At the end of this isolation period you'll have something cheery to liven up your office or living area at home. Here's a great seascape tutorial for beginners.

Get the craft glue and pompoms out. It’s Easter crafting time!
Get the craft glue and pompoms out. It’s Easter crafting time!

4. Create a scrapbook

How many times have you scrolled through your camera roll or Facebook timeline and thought it was about time you did something to keep all of your most important memories safe and somewhere you can look back on them in years to come? There are plenty of affordable online scrapbook and photo album makers where you can curate you're very own unique way to remember your favourite life moments forever. While there are plenty of great options for physical printed books, you could also take a paperless approach and make an online scrapbook you can share with the whole clan. You could even go one step further and upload all your old memory cards, tapes and hard drives and back them up to the family cloud so all of those embarrassing home movies with be on hand for the next 18th or 50th birthday.

5. Host a virtual tea party with your nearest and dearest

Just because we have to spend the next few days to weeks at home doesn't mean you have to put yourself into a state of total social isolation. Boot-up your Skype, Facetime or Facebook messenger, brew a kettle of your favourite tea and coffee and crack out the Tim Tams. Chances are you've been putting off a proper chat with your friends for ages, and now you've got no excuse not to have a good old-fashioned catch up. Plus, I am yet to come across a problem a strong cuppa and a choccy biscuit can't solve.

Get your friends together (online) for a virtual tea party. Everything is better after a good cuppa.
Get your friends together (online) for a virtual tea party. Everything is better after a good cuppa.

6. Try out a new fitness craze

I know what you're thinking - I can't leave my house to go to the gym … well don't sweat it … Just bring the gym to you! This is a great opportunity to try some fitness trends you've always been curious about, but never had the time (or maybe the confidence) to step out and try for yourself. There are a whole range of fitness apps that can take your through an entire workout session from the comfort of your living room, or you can simply follow along to a video on your laptop or tablet. This could be a great time to discover your new favourite exercise, whether it's the incredibly popular Body Groove, Yoga HIIT, Pound, Animal Flow, Barre, WaveShape or BodyArt Training - you might just be about to discover your next favourite outlet.

New exercise trend Pound, takes a cardio and weight training exercise approach that includes some of the rhythmical techniques used in pilates. Colourful, lightweight drumsticks called ripstix add an element of fun to Pound classes while they help exercisers count out the length of time they hold certain positions. Although they are light weight, the ripstix also help tone forearms, upper
New exercise trend Pound, takes a cardio and weight training exercise approach that includes some of the rhythmical techniques used in pilates. Colourful, lightweight drumsticks called ripstix add an element of fun to Pound classes while they help exercisers count out the length of time they hold certain positions. Although they are light weight, the ripstix also help tone forearms, upper

7. READ, READ, READ and READ

Thanks to smart phones and tablets we literally have the town library at our finger tips, so even if you're house bound you can still catch up on all of the biggest literary phenomena from the last couple years and not have to leave the house. Whether you prefer to read yourself, or have someone else read to you while you potter about there are a tonne of options on the Apple and Android stores. Some even offer introductory deals where your first book is free! Some of my personal favourites lately and highly recommend include The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris, The Subtle Art of Not Giving A F*** by Mark Manson, The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins, The Best Kind of Beautiful by Frances Whiting, Any Ordinary Day by Leigh Sales and Once We Were Brothers: A Novel by Ronald H Baslon.

The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris
The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris

8. Learn a new language

It's never been easier to self-teach yourself a new language. With the myriad of smartphone apps, videos and online guides you can become semi-fluent in just a few short weeks. Which is perfect timing because by the time COVID-19 blows over you'll be ready and rearing to go for that month long trip around South America you've always planned to take. Apps like Duolingo are a fantastic tool because it prompts you to do a little bit more study each day - and better yet, your first language is totally FREE.

 

Duolingo is a fun way to help you learn a new language from the comfort of your own home – better yet, your first language is FREE!
Duolingo is a fun way to help you learn a new language from the comfort of your own home – better yet, your first language is FREE!

9. Put together a time capsual

No one really knows what the future holds, but it's highly likely in several months the fall out from this COVID-19 pandemic will be a thing of the past and the Great Toilet Paper Shortage of 2020 will be nothing more than a meme. That being said, it's always good to stop for a minute and take the opportunity to remember this stage of your life and what your current goals are, where you've been and where you are going and what every day life was like for you and your family. Gather a few little mementos, trinkets, photos or a USB with things that represent moments and memories close to your heart right now. Then you can bury it in the back yard or seal it up with packing tap and put it somewhere you'll remember to find it in several years time. Who know's it could be a great gift to your children one day, or a wonderful way to mark a special anniversary or birthday in the years to come.

10. Write your loved ones a thoughtful letter

Take a trip back in time and hand write a letter for your friends and family.

Use the time to reflect on what's happening in your life and take the time to see what is going on in theirs. Physically writing can be extremely cathartic and it might just prompt a conversation you never knew you really needed to have.

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