As the summer holidays approach, this time can be a cause of anxiety for children who are out of routine for 8 weeks as well as their parents and caregivers who may struggle to find things to do.
When you have the added stress of having a child with a disability, activities which other children and their families find fun could have the complete opposite affect due to extra crowd numbers and noise.
Every child is different, so finding the right activity is important. Here are some Adelaide (and surrounds) based activities to consider:
Arts and Craft – craft activities, painting, drawing, stickers, chalk
Water Play – buckets, cups, boats, balls, paintbrushes
Build a Castle – pillows, chairs, table, sheets
Create a Reading/Play Nook – move furniture, blankets, pillows, books
Sensory Play – shaving foam, play-doh, floof, slime, magnetic sand
Gross Motor Play – trampoline, fitball, musical instruments
Listening and playing music has many benefits for our wellbeing, physical health and emotional regulation. It can keep us feeling happy, motivated and ease symptoms of depression.
While the above graphic references classical music, there is power in all types of music if it is enjoyed. Teenagers and small children are often drawn to and enjoy listening to music through YouTube, television, movies and gaming. And while the mode of sharing music is mostly digital or online in the modern world, it is possible to access the classics from previous generations if this is what you enjoy.
It is important to find music that you enjoy and a good place to find new music is to look on the current charts, take note of music you hear in the shows you like and look up songs and albums written and performed by the same artists. You can do this for free on platforms such as YouTube and Spotify. Add some headphones (noise cancelling if you want to remove environmental noise distractions), get listening and enjoy the benefits.
Finding and maintaining friendships can be difficult for many people but when you are a carer, it can feel impossible to find people who you truly connect with.
If you don’t have many friends, joining interest clubs such as a camera club, carer groups and activities, school events and online communities are some ways that you can find others who have similar interests as you.
Taking the time to build positive friendship connections increases your sense of well-being and gives you a wider world view. And by regularly talking to others, it can help reduce overall feelings of loneliness and isolation.
It is really important that when you find those connections with others that you take the time to nurture those people and share your highlights and lowlights equally. Make the time to listen to one another, have a laugh and support each other not only in the sad times but also in your endeavours and dreams.
People who are truly happy are out and about living life, enjoying their passions, doing good work and being good people. Chase your own passions and follow your own path. You will be amazed at who you find when your paths eventually cross. You will find those special people who ‘go together’ with you, who make you smile, who inspire you to do what you love and who believe in you, even when you struggle to believe in yourself.