Guest Post: 5 ways to lure kids away from malls

1 Sep

In today’s guest post, Praveen gives us tips and ideas to lure kids away from malls. Oh, a must read for all parents 😉

Unfortunately, more and more parents are opting for the easy way out and taking kids to the shopping centers where they can combine entertainment, shopping and eating at one place. While this may sound lucrative, the ugly truth is in the long run this unhealthy practice will have an adverse effect on our pocket – and our health.Here are five suggestions to wean the kids away from malls.

Arrange a picnic:

Remember how, long before malls arrived on the scene, we frequented the city zoo or botanical gardens armed with our picnic basket, a good book to read and some outdoor games? In the sylvan surroundings the family used to bond strongly. Relive those moments and introduce your kids to the simple pleasures of life. Spend a Sunday in the zoo over games of ludo, chess and badminton. If it is too cumbersome to prepare an elaborate meal just pack some sandwiches, fruits and fresh juice. The children will be so busy enjoying themselves they will eat anything you make as long as it is tasty.

Enjoy a stay-in:

If the heat is too sapping to go out, have picnics at home. Hire your favourite family movies, order some good Chinese food and take your place on the bean bag in front of the home theatre. Become a couch potato in style.

Have an Informal soiree:

When was the last time you and your friends got together at each other’s homes? More often than not we take the convenient route and celebrate birthdays and anniversaries at – where else – the mall. Ditch the practice and get together at one another’s houses at least once a month. Each can host the party on a rotational basis. Each family chips in by making a dish so that the host is not stuck in the kitchen for hours trying to whip up the perfect meal. Guaranteed enjoyment!

Fix play dates:

Call a few of your kids’ classmates for a play date at your house. Each of them can bring some of their toys and share it with others. While the kids have a gala time you can bond with the mothers. If all goes well, play dates will become a regular feature. They can be held on a rotational basis too once a month. It will give a superb opportunity to pick up some friends for life.

To market, to market:

Stocking up on provisions need not be an onerous chore. You can make it fun by taking your kids and visiting the Sunday bazaar rather than run to the supermarket in the vicinity. Let the children pick up a few lessons in negotiations by observing you bargaining with the greengrocer. Show them that a penny saved is a penny earned. Buy your grocery items from the local general store so they understand the importance of weights and measures which they would never learn if they pick up items off the shelf and load them in shopping carts. Have super fun shopping.

Just tweak your imagination and you will soon be flooded with ideas on how to spend your weekends without a visit to the mall.

Photo credit to Herr_Bert at http://www.flickr.com/photos/81223571@N00/2688637165

Praveen is the founder and CEO of Wild Creek Studio which operates many sites like AwesomeCuisine, TamilBrahmins, PoetryofLife, ChennaiForums, PremiumWoman. He was also interviewed by YourStory.in/NDTV, Chennai and is one of the most dynamic entrepreneur in India. It is a complete honour to have him over. Thank you.

Do you have more ideas. We love hearing about them.  Post it as a comment to this post or share it in your own blog and post the link here.

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6 Responses to “Guest Post: 5 ways to lure kids away from malls”

  1. spk100 September 1, 2012 at 8:16 am #

    Thank you 🙂

    • Purnima September 1, 2012 at 8:17 am #

      It is just not a pleasure to have you over in my blog, but a complete honour. Thank you for writing.

  2. Tatter Scoops September 3, 2012 at 9:32 am #

    Love this post! Jakarta is so full of malls I get sick of them. I’m afraid my son would grow up as a mall rat! Public parks here are in such bad shapes, I wouldn’t even dare to let him play there. Will have to try some of these 😀 Thanks for sharing!

    • Purnima September 6, 2012 at 7:34 pm #

      Take them all! If you have more ideas, run them by here too 🙂
      Mamas can never have enough ideas !!

  3. Mamma_Simona September 3, 2012 at 2:51 pm #

    My kids are teens already and I’m proud to say they dislike malls as much as I do! 🙂

    With my 19 year old son a “play date” is a bunch of friends coming over to our house with their computers to play a LAN game (which usually last all night)! My daughter is very active and usually joins her friends on the beach (whenever the weather permits).

    In South Africa it is very common for friends to get together on a Saturday, for what we call a “bring & braai”. Essentially the host provides the fire and a salad, while the guests bring their own meat and drinks. Usually the men are then in charge of cooking the meat on a grid over coals, while the wives ensure that there are enough “side dishes” in the form of potatoes etc.

    • Purnima September 6, 2012 at 7:34 pm #

      You are one lucky hard working lady to have that family 🙂

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