For many households, adapting to life in lockdown has seen the need for creative sources of entertainment. Staying in touch with loved ones by video calling has become the new norm, whilst others have swapped the pub for an old jigsaw puzzle.

If you’re running out of ideas or are lacking inspiration to fill your days, here are our top tips to keep you busy, happy and entertained!

Things to do for fun

Start a film club

Pick one or two nights a week to watch a film at the same time as your friends or family. Rate each film on plot, suspense or humour (depending on the genre of the film), and acting.

Clean out your wardrobe

Put aside any clothes you want to get rid of, and donate to a charity shop once they reopen.

Organise a treasure hunt for children

Hide clues, puzzles and riddles around the house and the garden, if you have one.

Call that friend you’ve been meaning to call

Now more than ever, is a good moment to reconnect with old friends – you have the time for that long overdue catch up!

Do some home improvements

Whether it’s hanging the photo that has been sitting around, organising that ‘odds and ends’ drawer that doesn’t quite open, or repotting your plants – why not do those jobs you’ve been meaning to do but haven’t quite got round to?

Things to do for your mind

Learn something new

Download the app ‘Duolingo’ on your phone to learn a new language for free, take up crocheting or perfect your pastry-making skills.

Start a new book

Commit to reading a certain number of pages each day, or a few chapters a week. Try something you wouldn’t normally read.

Make time for movement

Whatever your mobility levels, try and get some movement into your day. Using your daily exercise allowance to go on a walk or run, or even trying yoga in your living room for the first time are all great ways of keeping your body moving. If you are limited in mobility, the NHS website has some great sitting exercises.

Try meditation

Allowing yourself time to stop, relax and breathe is incredibly important, even if you’ve spent all day at home. Give yourself 10 minutes to find a sense of calm, close your eyes and focus on your breathing or the sounds you can hear. You could even use a meditation app like Calm or Headspace to guide you.

Listen to a podcast or a radio show

There are hundreds of podcasts to choose from – which you can access on Audible, Apple Podcast or Google Podcast – and many radio shows have released their archives onto BBC Sounds.

Our top picks are:
  • Off Menu with Ed Gamble and James Acaster

(Podcast) – A similar forma to Desert Island Discs, but with food instead of music

Off Menu

  • No Such Thing as a Fish

(Podcast) – Researchers from the television show QI share their four favourite facts

No Such Thing as a Fish

  • Just a minute

(BBC Sounds) – The long-running panel show where hesitation, repetition and deviation are forbidden

  • The Unbelievable Truth

(BBC Sounds) – For fans of ‘Would I Lie to You?’


Things to do for your appetite

Bake something delicious

Now is definitely a ‘treat yourself’ moment – whether it’s an indulgent cake or savoury muffins, why not spend an afternoon cooking up a treat?

Make pizza from scratch

You could get a takeaway or you could buy the ingredients needed to make your favourite pizza. It’s fun, cost effective and delicious!

Try the ‘rustle up’ challenge

Usually, if we don’t have all the ingredients needed in the cupboard, we wouldn’t think twice of nipping to the shops to get anything we’re missing. Set yourself a challenge to make a hearty meal using only your store cupboard essentials. Chicken nuggets and kidney beans? Sure! Pasta and veggie burgers? Why not?!

Make homemade granola

A brilliant way of using up all those nuts, seeds and oats in your cupboard and a welcome addition to yoghurt, crumbles or ice cream.

One-pot wonders

There are numerous one-pot dishes you can try if you’re just not feeling up to cooking. From pasta dishes to salmon and couscous, the internet is rife with ideas – the BBC Good Food website is a good place to start!

BBC Good Food

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