A few weeks ago I happened upon WeekendBoxClub.com, and was instantly interested. I have a very active three year old son and of course am part of the team behind Kewelboxes.com and BoxofHorrors.com, so am always keen to see how others do it!
WeekendBoxClub.com is a subscription box service for children, offering either fortnightly, or monthly boxes – containing either two or four activities (prices below) for your child(ren) and you to do together.
I am one of those parents, who always ends up taking my son out. He is a bouncing ball of energy and time in the house ends up invariably with him staring at the tv while I clean up paint, play doh, glue, glitter and cake mix from the walls! So I was really interested to see if a box of activities just for him would actually be something we could sit and enjoy doing together!
Subscribing is an easy process – the website is well designed and very clear and easy to use. I had a free code to get my first box (as can everybody – nobody gave me a free box to write a review!), but you do still need to enter your card details . There are two boxes to choose from – Mini Box gives you “2x Activities randomly chosen from MAKE, BAKE, EXPLORE & MORE”, whilst the Bumper Box give you “4x Activities from something to MAKE, BAKE, EXPLORE & MORE”. Both boxes are either fortnightly or monthly (default is fortnightly – so make sure you don’t get caught out if you would prefer monthly). The Mini Box is £4.95, whilst the Bumper box is £7.50. Each subscription also gives you a personalised box, and access to the online Club House (which is just the place to manage your account, payments etc. You can also earn points towards merchandise and prizes etc).
So box ordered, we waited, but not for too long, it arrived within a week. My son spotted it coming through the door, and so together we opened it. To say he was excited is an understatement. He straight away spotted his name, so knew it was for him! He loved ripping open the box and the brightly coloured inside instantly had his attention. Together we went through everything, and it really does all come beautifully packed and designed. The box is not big, but it is all thought out to the finest detail. There are four woodland style characters – Hattie, Wooster, Sammy and Oswald. Inside are four little paper bags, all colour coded to the four instruction cards. So you can see exactly what you are getting and what there is to make. In addition there was all the extra bits such as coloured card, foam and a paper plate. There was a poster in there as well to help track our boxes and collect points, plus stickers and some information sheets. The box itself is lovely and bright with the bottom becoming a colourable certificate once you have done the activities.
Saturday morning, we were up early (as always), and so we did our first activity which was a “plant your own rainforest”. I should say at this point that the theme for the box was rainforests! Extra things we needed were a empty plastic bottle and some scissors (and I would recommend a plastic jug of water, and a screwdriver to pop a hole in the plastic bottle lid before you start). The instructions were really easy to follow, and he, of course, absolutely loved plopping the soil pellets in and watching them turn into soggy soil. He was patient and interested enough to pop the seeds in one by one! I realised afterwards I had used a way too big bottle – but its all on our kitchen window waiting to sprout.
Later that afternoon, we decided to make the cookies. I was straight away fairly suspicious about these. The three ingredients being oats, raisins and a banana (you need to add the banana). Extremely easy to make, and my son, who hates banana loved mashing it, but there were just not enough oats. I realised this as soon as we started, and halved the banana, but even then we had less than two teaspoons of oats, which was nowhere near enough. So I threw in the whole banana and added a good dessert spoon and a half of oats in myself. All that said, they do cook up ok, and are surprisingly sweet. The texture is a little grey, but for a banana fan a good snack with no refined sugar!
The next day we had the morning free and so we set to making the parrot mask first. This was great fun. He loved doing the sticking and decorating and has been wearing it on and off since – although for some reason it became a Pigeon! I think for me this was the best thing in the box. What we made gave instant satisfaction, was successful and easy but took a little time. The only thing we needed to add was a pair of scissors (and a sharp pencil for making the holes for elastic), and that is where the boxes come into their own because you are supplied with the glue and crayons etc they are perfect to take away on holidays and trips because you have what you need in the box.
Finally he made the bubble wrap snake in the afternoon with his Dad, which they enjoyed doing. It was fun and easy and as it contains paint, the best thing in the world for any 3 year old, he loved it. All that was needed again was a pair of scissors (and a pen and some water to make up the paint).
We really enjoyed the box, all of us! It was nice for my son, because he loved knowing the activities were there just for him, and he did ask on the Saturday morning to do his “activities”. He loved pairing up the coloured paper bags with the instruction sheets, and sticking the stickers on when he had finished. He has enjoyed the mask the most, the rainforest water bottle will come into its own, when it starts growing (I have no idea what is going to grow), the cookies were the only thing that disappointed a little, because even though the bubble wrap snake is just a painted paper plate, it was fun to do and has googly eyes!
Am I continuing my subscription? Yes, definitely. I will just be getting one box a month, and will probably next time do two activities over a couple of weekends. We are away in September for a big family holiday with a gaggle of children under five in the same cabin for a week, so I will definitely be taking a stash for them all.
I cannot recommend it highly enough, because parenting isn’t easy and when you are super busy you don’t always have the time or energy to think of interesting fun things to do in the house with your children, this is a great way to spend time together without some of the stress involved, because I didn’t have to get out the acres of crafting boxes and “stuff” it was easy to clean up afterwards!
Great stuff from WeekendBoxClub.com, we will be enjoying them for some time to come!