20 Fun Things to Do at Home Now

Here's how to stay busy without leaving the house.

fun things to do at home
Max Kim-Bee

"I'm bored." The dreaded words kids say to adults when they're stuck in the house. Keeping them busy with fun things to do at home is the key to keeping the peace. After they've played with all the toys, watched all the best kids' movies on Netflix, reached maximum screen-time consumption, and devoured all the snacks (have they always been this hungry?), it's time to take a deep breath and get creative.

Where to begin? Just look around your house. Take those art supplies that are scattered all over and gather them into one official kids' art hub. Challenge them to create a "gallery" complete with their own art show. Better yet, ask them to color a Country Living cover! Take the fun outside, too: DIY outdoor games will provide hours of entertainment (and much-needed vitamin D) for the whole family.

If we're being completely honest, adults who are stuck at home can start to feel that boredom creeping in, too. Try filling your time with productive tasks that are joyful to you like cooking and crafting. Consider all those items on your "someday" list and tackle those first.

Here are 20 ideas for fun things to do at home when you're bored, both indoors and outside, to keep everyone in the household happily entertained.

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1 Embrace the Backyard

Turn that patch of green into an outdoor play wonderland with games and summer essentials. With cornhole and croquet to kites and a kiddie pool, your kids should never be bored again.

2 Bake a Delicious Dessert

Spending time in the kitchen is a fun way to pass the time. And when the reward is a plate of cookies or this Spring Daisy Lemon Layer Cake, count us in! This cake is sure to be a crowd-pleaser (and it's 100 percent Instagram-worthy!).

Get the recipe.

3 Host a Family Porch Party
Max Kim-Bee

If you're not having porch parties on the regular, are you really living?! Host an impromptu family snack session or happy hour while getting some much-needed fresh air. No porch? A small stoop or balcony works, too, or just throw open a window for a change of scenery.

4 Get Crafty

Let your creative juices flow freely, and bring all those crafty ideas you've brushed aside to life. One quick and easy idea: Wrap a journal in fabric, as shown, and add a hand-drawn "cross-stitch" label. Use the notebook as a place to jot down future crafting ideas.

5 Create a Quiet Spot for Reading
David Tsay

Adults and kids alike deserve a quiet place to get lost in a book. All you need to create an ideal reading nook is a comfy chair, good lighting (near a window works), and a shelf for books and magazines.

6 Create a Kids' Art Corner
Max Kim-Bee

Creating art is a fun — and, let's face it — messy at-home activity. The crayons, the markers, the paint, and, for you brave souls who allow it, the glitter...To keep the beautiful mess contained, carve out a designated area. Include a flat work surface, and hang a peg or bulletin board for displaying your child's masterpieces. Tuck away extra supplies in drawers.

7 Try a New Recipe

Dig into that stack of cookbooks (or browse best dinner recipes), and experiment with cooking. Your family will appreciate a new recipe or two mixed in to the rotation of weeknight favorites.

8 Plant Flowers
JACKIE GREANEY AND PAUL HAVEL

Get outside, and get your hands dirty! Fresh air and a direct connection to nature can help clear your mind, whether you have a large plot for planting vegetables or a collection of containers for seasonal favorites.

9 Rearrange Furniture
HARIS KENJAR

If the same view from the sofa has you bored, try rearranging your furniture. Take into account where vents and electrical outlets are situated. The good news is if you don't like it, you can move it back!

10 Take Up a New Hobby

Whether it's knitting, needlepoint, or sewing, now's the time to try your hand at something new. In addition to meticulous handiwork, cross-stitching requires the utmost concentration. Frame in a hoop, as shown, or incorporate completed patterns into other items, like a pillow. Purchase Country Living cross-stitch kits here.

11 Hang a Gallery Wall
DAVID A. LAND

Turn that blank wall into a new focal point in your home. When it comes to arranging your artwork, the general rule is that anything goes. Try grouping art by theme, color, or frame material for a more cohesive look.

12 Scrapbook Your Photos
Save Family Photos by @fullertonphoto

Give old family snapshots stuffed in that shoebox a forever home in a special photo album. Flip through them with your kids and see if they can guess which small child in the photo is Grandpa.

13 Play Games or Put Together a Puzzle
Brian Woodcock

Get the whole family in on game night. Board games and cards are the obvious go-tos, but consider best jigsaw puzzles for a more time-consuming activity. No games on hand? Charades and shadow puppets make for low-maintenance entertainment.

14 BBQ in the Backyard

Attention all grillmasters (and grillmasters-in-training)! Casual dinners at home call for build-your-own burgers and other best grilling recipes. Round out a meal with a grilled veggie salad as a side and grilled peaches with ice cream for dessert.

15 Dine Outdoors
ANNIE SCHLECHTER

Mix up your typical mealtime routine and eat outside. Whether on a blanket picnic-style or at a table under romantic string lights, these best backyard ideas will inspire dining alfresco and more.

16 Paint by Number
Aimee Cecil/Easy123Art

Wonderfully nostalgic, paint-by-number kits come with everything you need (canvas, paints, brush) to create your own masterpiece. Purchase a Country Living kit here.

For a more organic artistic experience, give blind contour drawing a try (it will really test your hand-eye coordination).

17 Paint Furniture
David Hillegas

Just one piece of painted furniture can add such character to a room and is a manageable one-day project (talk about instant gratification!). Take stock of dull pieces in your basement or attic and give them new life with a fresh coat of paint. Not committed to painting the whole piece? Consider sprucing up wood furniture with a stripe instead.

18 Raise Chickens

We're so serious. If raising chickens at home has always been on your "someday" list, now's the time. They can make great pets, and two words: fresh eggs.

19 Set a Fancy Table

Why wait for the holidays to pull out the fine china and heirloom linens? Let everyday at home be a special occasion. Light candles for a romantic mood.

20 Organize Your Kitchen

Organizing, fun? Yes! For a certain set of humans (you know who you are), cleaning and organizing Marie Kondo–style is as satisfying as it gets. Tackle those closets, pantries, drawers, and open shelves, keeping only what you truly need and love.

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