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Monday, August 9, 2010

Book Review: Family Funbook

Family FunbookI came across this book when browsing on Amazon and bought it because I remember my mother enjoying several books written by this author when I was growing up. Family Funbook: More than 400 Amazing, Amusing and All-Around Awesome Activities for the Entire Family! by Joni Hilton is full of fun and creative ideas to do with your kids. I love this book (even though I probably wouldn't pick it up if I were basing my purchase just on the cover). I am definitely going to refer to this book the next time my kids are bored and I need a new idea. This book has many, many inexpensive ways to keep the kids entertained and learning year round.  Some of them I have heard of before, but there are many that I haven't and had never occurred to me. I highly recommend it. Here are some of my favorites:

  • Take a week long trip at home. Pick a destination and have an activity each day that relates to that place. Some suggestions she gives are Asia, Africa, South America and Polynesia. Each day do something related to your destination. Find books related to your vacation spot. Make crafts related to the area.Try foods and activities that are typical of the region. Her book offers dozens of ideas. There is a lot of fun and learning that could be had here.
  • Make an alphabet video. Have your child point to things that start with each letter of the alphabet or make letters out of sticks or stones. Then have them pose in the shape of each letter at the end as a review. Your child will love to watch it when you're done and s/he will love that they are the star.
  • Go on a nature walk. Find different kinds of spider webs. Make up stories about animals that you might find. Have a scavenger hunt. Bring crayons and paper to make rubbings.
  • Play hose soccer. Give each team a hose and have them try to spray and kick a beach ball the opposing side of a given line. Good summer time fun.
  • Watch falling stars- Mid-August is a good time for this.
  • Record the things the funny things that your children say- I do this on my personal blog and it's the grandparents favorite part. It also reveals more of their personalities than photographs often do.
  • Have a treasure hunt- Have one child hide a treasure and make a map for the others to find it. This can be repeated many times with a variety of "treasures".
  • Make a sundial. Teach your children about time using a stick and 12 stones
  • Ice cream muffins- Easiest muffin recipe ever. Equal parts softened ice cream and self-rising flour. Bake at 375 for 12 minutes. (Give or take depending on how many muffins you make.) These were perfect. Quick, easy, delicious and my picky children even loved them.We made peach ice cream muffins and topped them with raspberry jam. 2 cups of ice cream & 2 cups of flour made nine muffins
  • Draw with your toes.- See if you are right-footed or left-footed.
  • Declare a Whipped Cream War- Have everyone dress in their swimsuits and equip them with a can of whipped cream.
  • Ease Separation Anxiety- School is starting and to make it a little easier for you child, laminate a family picture and tape it to the inside of their lunch box to remind them that they are loved when they are away.


  1. Saw you on MMB! I"ll have to check this book out. Always looking for new books!

  2. I think it may be out of print, but there are still some copies floating out there. I bought a cheap used copy on Amazon and it was fine.