As we yet again find ourselves in another national lockdown, it’s becoming harder and harder to find new ways to entertain and satisfy our need for change. I’ve decided this month to do my article on different ideas or hobbies to try over this lockdown to keep your life interesting, or just fill some free time.

  1. Start a Sketchbook. Despite the fact that I do Art GCSE, it’s always nice to have the freedom to do your own project. If you like art, it might be fun to buy a new empty book, think of a theme, idea or set of skills you’d like to practice and work on them throughout the book until it’s finished. I've been working on one of these just for flowers.
  2. Try to learn a new skill.  This one is probably overused a little, but really when you think about it, there are numerous different things you could try. From knitting and embroidery, to baking or making little frog rings out of clay like my friend Emily, there are really thousands of different things you can do to fill time. I decided to try and learn how to write in shorthand at the start of lockdown, which I find highly exciting even though nobody really uses it anymore.
  3. Read a book. I personally love reading, but I know it’s not everyone’s cup of tea as it can be really hard for some to get into a book. I usually like reading classics, but many find them quite boring, so I decided to get an outside perspective on some page turners. My friend Day Ko has one of the most exciting reading tastes I’ve come across so here are some recommendations from her: One of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus, A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder Holly Jackson, One by Sarah Crossan, Percy Jackson by Rick Riordan, The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, The Territory by Sarah Govett and Every Day by David Levithan.
  1. Make a mood board. This idea was sort of inspired by one of my mother’s friends who makes one every January with parts of magazines and photos selected throughout the year. You can use photos, stickers, internet pictures, paint, newspaper clippings or even receipts and other random items that mean something to you. It’s a lovely way to summarise a year and its ups and downs so you can remember them, but also move on afresh to another year.
  1. Start a journal or scrapbook. I started my journal/scrapbook at the beginning of 2019 and I’m now working on my second. There’s something so satisfying about writing about all of the exiting and scary things that happen to you, knowing you will one day be able to look back on the things that were so significant in your life before. In mine I’ve also put pressed flowers, sketches, poems, polaroids and all sorts of bits and bobs that I can fit in there. There’s something continuous about it that I feel I can rely on, as no matter what happens I know I will be able to go back to my own little book and write.
  1. Have a Netflix party. This is something my friends and I started doing every Saturday at the beginning of the first lockdown and it has continually been lots of fun. Netflix has a feature where you can essentially have all your friends watching the same film at the same time in a group, provided you all have a Netflix account. It’s a nice opportunity to just relax and have a talk with some of your friends and I’ve seen some very good films that I probably would never have thought of watching on my own.

Overall, lockdown is pretty boring, but there are so many things you can do to bring some new change into your life despite being stuck at home. Whether that’s learning a new skill, reading a book, or just watching a film with a group of your friends. There are loads of things we can’t do now, but we’ve been forced to find new ways to adapt and with the help of mood boards, clay charms, and cookbooks, I believe we can all find a way to work through this time.