We have recently returned from a holiday in Australia where we got to hang out with my family (including my beautiful brand new niece) for three weeks. It was wonderful.
This did, however, require 24 hours worth of flying to get there and I was a little apprehensive about how well my nearly-two-year-old would cope. She's usually pretty relaxed and self contained, happy to draw and listen to stories, but I knew there would be times when she would be really tired, fidgety through lack of running around, and generally fed up (and possible quite vocal about it).
I decided to put together an in-flight activity bag for her. I bought a lovely little world map backpack from the Maritime Museum in Greenwich and began to assemble some new things to keep her occupied. I included some stickers, a couple of Dr Seuss books, chunky lego-style blocks as well as her favourite Stripey Teddy and essentials like little raisin boxes so that she'd have something to chew if her ears were popping.
I also wanted to include a small colouring book. She's at the scribbling stage (as immortalised here) rather than actually colouring anything in and so doesn't really engage with the usual colouring books, so I thought I'd make her one that was visually interesting, even if she wasn't colouring it all in.
I made her two scribble books, each using a card my mum had previously sent to the Little One featuring Australian wildlife (as well as a lovely message from my mum) as a cover. The first one was small with plain white pages and a postcard of a Rosella print.
I used the same process as my Handy Dandy Notebooks. Here I've secured the pages using mini pegs, I have waxed 4 strands of sewing thread with beeswax and am about to get saddle stitching.
As it turns out, she wasn't really interested in that one, she preferred her personalised colouring book:
I used this koala card and, to keep the pages interesting, I used a mixture of colored paper, lined and graph paper, as well as abstract patterns I printed off the interwebs.
That waviness is because I didn't use a properly sharpened knife to trim the edges. The Little One didn't seem to mind.
And here's an 'after' shot. Thankfully she did travel pretty well and she did engage with this book, scribbling in it and sticking the stickers. As you can see, her water bottle leaked on it at one point, and she ripped one of the pages, so it has been well used!
I still put it in her little backpack along with her pencils, books, blocks etc when we head out and she continues to use it. And when this one is exhausted, I'll make her another one!