I love thrift stores. I love the treasure hunting and the low prices and the endless possibilities of all that stuff! I have to be careful, however, not to get too carried away or heaven only knows what I'll bring home! LOL! And really, it's not a bargain if I never use it or wear it.
Today the local thrift store, Savers, had one of their holiday half-off sales. This is even better! Thrifting for half the price! GF Girl needed "new" clothes and I'm in need of some more sweaters and such for teaching and the like, so off we went. The Boy went skiing with the youth group, so Thumper needed to come along too. Now, Thumper doesn't need any new clothes, thanks to hand-me-downs from her sister, her cousin, and a couple of friends. So she would be bored out of her head while GF Girl and I shopped. What to do? What to do?
A Scavenger Hunt!
Yep, I made a list of commonly-found items at the thrift store for her to search for. She loved it! She found many of them, and GF Girl got into it too.
Here's my list.....make your own, add to it, modify it, whatever you need to do to keep your young ones entertained while you shop.
A red t-shirt
The Easter Bunny
A seaside photo/drawing/painting
A book about money
A Barbie with dark hair
A gold purse
A brightly colored scarf
A peace sign
A smiley face
A sewing pattern
A measuring cup
A Valentine mug
Something for St. Patrick's Day
An American flag
A flag from another country
Fun/Funky salt & pepper shaker set
An unusual kitchen gadget
Crayons or markers
1000 pc puzzle
You get the idea. Just think of the unusual stuff you find at your local thrift store and make yourself a list. You could have your kids compete in teams or do a photo scavenger hunt, snapping photos of the items with a cell phone.
In my case, the store is contained and safe and my kids are old enough to handle themselves on their own. They didn't run wild like a pack of wild monkeys on Mountain Dew. Obviously, you'll need to take into consideration the age and maturity level (and caffeine consumption) of your kids, but even if they're still riding in the cart and you're giving them a few things to look for, it will keep their attention. You could do an alphabet search too....find something that starts with A or find the letter A or colors or numbers...if you want to make it a bit more educational.