Few of us appreciate cold, wind, and rain. But rather than wishing for sunnier days, why not explore some new ways to have fun, get creative, and reap a sense of reward? There are plenty of rainy day activities that you can take advantage of, and who knows, perhaps you’ll discover a new hobby or activity that you can keep up, whatever the weather.

With this in mind, we’ve put together a list of 13 things to do on a rainy day that we hope will brighten your mood. From taking an interior design course to creating an inspiring vision board; we’d love to know if you do any of the activities below – or if you have any additional ideas to share with us…

1. Create a recipe book

If you have some of your own recipes (or recipes handed down to you from older relatives) that you love, then why not pull them all together into a recipe book that you can keep, gift to others, or share with your family?

How you decide to organise your recipe book – for example, by starter/main/dessert or meat/veg/sweets, is completely up to you. You could fill an entire book, or just a few pages; with the idea being that you (or your family) can add new recipes to it over the years.

There are a number of different ways you can customise your recipe book too. Some people might prefer a more minimalistic style, while others might want to put a lot of time and thought into creating a recipe book that looks beautiful. You can also choose to handwrite your recipe book or type it up and print it.

To get you thinking about how you might create your own recipe book, it’s worth having a read of this article on 19 homemade recipe book ideas you can DIY easily from Lucky Belly.

2. Take an interior design course 

When you’re stuck at home, your attention may turn to the smaller details of your living space – like the peeling wallpaper you’ve been meaning to replace, the empty sideboard that could do with some jazzing up, or the stack of lumpy throw cushions on your sofa that need replacing.

Spending time at home can be far more enjoyable if you’re in a space that you admire, and that brings you as much comfort, enjoyment, and relaxation as possible. So, if you want to breathe some fresh energy into your home and you’re stuck for ideas, then you could consider taking a course in interior design.

Whether you want to learn more about how to put different colour schemes together, discover popular styles and trends, or find out how to create a space plan – there’s a course for everyone.

You can browse the full range of interior design courses available on our site here.

Or if interior design isn’t your thing, you might find some inspiration in our article; 16 interesting online courses, which includes everything from animal studies to diet and nutrition, and card making.

3. Complete a 2000-piece jigsaw puzzle

Not only are jigsaw puzzles an entertaining way to spend a few hours (or days!), but they’re also great for helping us to relax and take breaks from technology – while challenging our brains at the same time.

When solving a jigsaw puzzle, we use both hemispheres of the brain and make connections between them, which improves our ability to learn, understand, and recall things. Plus, when we successfully place a puzzle piece, our brains release a neurotransmitter called dopamine. Dopamine has a positive impact on mood, memory, motivation, motor control, and our ability to focus.

You can also do jigsaw puzzles alone, as a chance to unwind, or with others as a social activity – so it’s a great all-round rainy day activity.

If you’re in need of a few new jigsaws, then it’s worth checking out Jigsaw Puzzles Direct, where you can search for puzzles by age, size, or image – or even by artist. For those who really fancy a challenge, a 2000 piece puzzle could be a good choice. And we’d love to see your finished creations in the comment section below!

4. Create an inspiring vision board

It’s easy for us to become so busy with the hustle and bustle of everyday life that we forget to dream, and to ask ourselves questions like: what do I really want to get out of life? So if the weather is keeping you at home, then why not consider creating an inspiring vision board?

A vision board is any sort of visual display that can act as a powerful reminder of whatever you want to be, have, or do in your life. It usually includes images, words, and/or quotes that represent your goals. For example, you might use an image of a beach if you’ve always wanted to live by the sea, or a quote from someone you admire who has achieved something that you want to work towards yourself.

Vision boards are about hope, the promise of a better day, and remembering what life’s all about. They’ll often grow and evolve along with you, so your vision board might look completely different from one year to the next.

To find out more about vision boards, and how to create yours, it’s worth having a read of our in depth article here.

5. Start a blog about anything at all

Blogging is a bit like keeping a journal, except it lives online and is usually shared with others. You can share anything in a blog; thoughts, feelings, advice, experiences, or expertise – and it can also be personal or professional.

You might choose to keep a day-in-the-life blog where you let people into the ins and outs of your life and allow them to really get to know you. Or you could keep a blog about something you’re really passionate about – such as travel, fashion, baking, or animals – with the aim of inspiring others. If you’re a business owner, then perhaps you could start a blog that gives tips to others on how to set up their own business… the list is endless.

Once you know what you want to write about, setting up a blog is pretty simple, and it’s completely up to you how often you choose to create content for it. If you’re wondering where to start, then we’ve put together a handy guide that will show you how to set up a blog in six easy steps.

Or, if blogging online isn’t something you’re interested in, then perhaps you could start a handwritten journal instead.

6. Bake something elaborate

As a society that’s always in a rush, it’s easy to prioritise speed and convenience when we’re cooking and baking. But if you’re spending the day at home, then why not take the time to bake something elaborate and learn some new skills in the process?

If you’re looking for somewhere to start, then you could try baking this Charlotte royale recipe from Mary Berry, this prinsesstårta (Swedish princess cake) from SkandiKitchen, or this rosemary focaccia bread from Gimme Some Oven.

Or, if you’re a Great British Bake Off fan, then why not have a go at making some of the show’s bakes yourself? You can find a whole host of recipes from finalists as far back as series eight on The Great British Bake Off’s website – and you could even apply for the show if you’re feeling brave!

7. Make your own bubble bath and face mask

There are few things better than having a nice hot bubble bath and a pamper session on a blustery day. But toiletries and beauty products can be expensive, and half the time we don’t even truly know what’s in them.

So, if you want to save some money, skip the chemicals, and get creative, then you could have a go at making your own bubble bath. The only four ingredients you need are castile soap, glycerin, distilled water, and essential oils – and the process itself is quite straightforward.

To find out what to do next, you can have a read of this guide from The Guardian, which will explain how to make sweet dreams bubble bath, cold season bubble bath, pure sunshine bubble bath, and love potion bubble bath.

If you fancy making your own face mask too, then there are plenty of ideas in this article from Marie Claire (the stress relief face mask and the cocoa dream hydration mask come top of our list!).

8. Declutter and reorganise your home

Though decluttering is a physical activity, it’s also a brilliant way to reduce stress by freeing yourself from some of the items that have been weighing you down. As human beings, we’re drawn to order and symmetry. So when our homes feel cluttered, our minds often feel cluttered too, whether we realise it or not.

Decluttering and reorganising your things is also an opportunity to rediscover lost treasures, and make daily living feel more manageable. After all, having something fall out of a cupboard every time you open it is a sure way to boost your irritability levels!

Many of us like the idea of decluttering but putting it into practice and parting with items we’ve grown attached to can be tricky. Before getting started, you might find it helpful to have a read of our article, How to declutter and reorganise your home, which has plenty of ideas for how you can make the most of your living space.

If you’re wondering what to do with your clutter when you’re finished, then you could consider donating good quality items to your local charity shop or even selling them to make some extra cash. Our article, How to make money from your clutter, has some good ideas on how to do this.

9. Explore fun things to do online

When you’re in the mood for some lighthearted entertainment, there are no limits to what you can do online. Whether you want to track sharks, check in with gorillas in eastern Congo, paint with flames, or explore the stars – the internet is a great place to turn when you need a distraction or just something to make you smile.

If you’d like some ideas and inspiration for where to head first, then it’s worth having a read of our article 22 fun things to do online. We’d love to know which activity you enjoyed most!

For those who’d like to do something fun, yet educational online, you could also try taking a virtual museum or an art gallery tour. Some of the places you could explore include the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art in South Korea, and the Uffizi Gallery in Florence. Why not have a read of our article, 10 of the worlds best virtual museum and art gallery tours, to find out more?

10. Choose your craft and unleash your creativity

Nothing says ‘rainy day activity’ like getting stuck into some arts and crafts and exploring your artistic side. And the list of creative things you can do is endless. From painting and calligraphy to macramé and knitting, through to carpentry and origami – there’s something for everyone.

Learning a new craft is also just the beginning. Once you get to grips with the basics, who knows what kind of exciting projects you could immerse yourself in?

If you’re looking for some inspiration for where to start, then there’s plenty of ideas in our articles; 10 interesting craft ideas to try at home and 9 creative skills you can learn from home.

11. Get lost in a good book or TV series

A good story can make for one of the best forms of escapism, and it’s amazing how many hours can fly by when you’re invested in a compelling book or TV series.

If you enjoy reading and you’re in need of a few new book ideas, then we have plenty of articles that might pique your interest; including 16 crime and mystery books that you won’t be able to put down, 18 of the greatest adventure books, and 15 inspiring self-development books.

For those who’d rather get engrossed in a good series, then some of the most talked-about ones at the moment that you might want to try include: Squid Game (Netflix Exclusive), Angela Black (ITV), The Tower (ITV), and Maid (Netflix Exclusive).

Or if you fancy having a movie marathon then you might find some ideas for films to watch in our articles 18 movies everyone should see and 17 unmissable history films.

12. Work out at home

If the idea of exercising outside isn’t so appealing in the rain, then this doesn’t mean that you have to skip your workout altogether. There are plenty of ways to get your blood pumping from the comfort of your own home.

For those who love to dance, why not try an online class? There’s a huge range of styles to choose from, including ballet, African dance, and walking dance workouts. You can find out more in our article 11 online dance classes for beginners.

There are also plenty of other exercises you can do at home; such as Pilates, yoga, Tai Chi, or lifting weights – which you can find out more about in our article on the importance of building strength and balance in your 50s and 60s.

Alternatively, to read more about how to incorporate exercise into your routine chores or about other ways to get creative with your workouts, why not read our article 5 steps to staying fit from home?

13. Plan a trip away somewhere

A rainy day makes for the perfect opportunity to sit down and start planning your next adventure; especially if you’ve been itching to get away.

The process of discovering and learning about new places can often be quite exciting in itself. So even if you aren’t sure when or where you want to go yet, there’s nothing to stop you from exploring your options.

If you’re thinking about travelling solo for the first time (or the first time in a while), then you might want to check out our handy guide, which has lots of tips and ideas for travelling alone. Or if you need help choosing where to travel next, then why not visit the travel section of our site?  Here you’ll find holiday destinations both in the UK and abroad.

Final thoughts...

When it’s gloomy outside, it’s only natural that this might affect our mood – especially if we have to cancel outdoor plans, or don’t feel much like going outside. But, there are plenty of things we can do to lift our spirits and fight cabin fever.

As a society, we’ve generally been led to believe that days spent at home due to bad weather are a negative thing. But in today’s fast-paced world, it can also encourage us to slow down and take some well-needed respite.

What activities do you like to do on a rainy day? Will you be doing any of the activities above? We’d love to hear about your experiences. Join the conversation on the Rest Less community forum, or leave a comment below.

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