Evening Hobbies For Busy Parents That Don’t Involve TV

By the end of the day, with a four month old (and his two older siblings), I find that I am so exhausted! I just want to sit and veg in front of Netflix and not do a whole lot. I know that sometimes this has its place, but in general, I can almost feel worse when I just sit there. Going to bed early doesn’t always happen, depending on what the baby is doing, so finding some hobbies and things to do in the evenings that aren’t just watching TV, always helps me. We are some of those people who have cancelled their Netflix subscription starting from next month, so we definitely do need to find some other things to do.

Some of my favourite things to do are:

  • Painting: It might seem a little like cheating, but I really like using paint by numbers kits. You get all of the things that you need from paints to brushes, and as the design is there for you, it is quite mindless to just enjoy painting, rather than having to come up with a design of your own (though if that works for you, then go for it). I like to commit quite a lot of time to be able to paint, so it isn’t something that I do all the time, but when I do, I really enjoy it.
  • Exercise:  Some days I definitely am lacking in motivation to exercise after a long day, but I know there is more time to do it in the evening compared to the busy mornings where I’m rushing around. I use YouTube mostly, unless I’m able to fit in an external class, but with a few hand weights and a mat, it is surprising just how much of a workout you can get done at home. Now the evenings are lighter for longer, I do like to go out for a walk locally too.
  • Cooking and food prep: Although this is part of my ‘chores,’ if you like, it still helps me to save time and makes the next day or so run much more smoothly when I have food planned and prepared. This might be making my overnight oats ahead of time, making the packed lunches for the next day, and getting the food prepared and planned for the meals the next day, for example. It means we have dinners ready to go, and when rushing about with kids’ clubs it is easier to get things going.

Have You Tried Gaming Online?

Having kids with a PS4, I can often feel like I’m setting time limits for when the kids can finish playing or not. I’m not a massive fan of gaming on consoles. Even having them growing up I wasn’t a massive fan especially, but did like some Mario Kart and old school Sonic the Hedgehog games! If you’re looking for something that you can just switch off with for an evening, then have you thought of online gaming? I have been playing quite a lot recently, as it is something I can do on my phone when sitting there breastfeeding, and feels like I’m doing something a little better than just scrolling on social media. 

Plays.org is a site I have been using and they have thousands of games to choose from. In fact, there are more and more games that get added to the list on a daily basis so there is likely to be something for everyone on there. The best thing is that they are completely free to play, and you don’t need to sign into anything, register a card, or anything like that. That is really appealing to me as it means I can just dip in and out of playing. 

Classic games to choose from

I am a bit old-school with games that I like to play and my favourites are Tetra Blocks (much like Tetris that I used to play on my Gameboy), Pizza Quest (featuring the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles which is a fun little throwback game), Mousetrap Tom & Jerry, which is a pinball game, and Super Mario Rush, the classic game navigating Mario through different routes and terrains and getting coins along the way. They’re all really enjoyable and easy to play, but as I have mentioned, there will be games for everyone as there are so many to choose from, including chess to Batman speed games. 

What are some of the things that you like to do on an evening? It would be great to hear what you think and what you would like to try.

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