This special day for your Dad is going to be a little different, but certainly better than last year now things are slowly returning to normal. I think if the crisis has taught us anything, it’s to be prepared for the unexpected. With that in mind, we reckon we need to help us all along with ways to celebrate the day either with, or without your Dad in the room with you.

You may finally be able to take your favourite man off for a drink, or maybe even sit down for a family meal in your favourite restaurant, but let’s hope with a bit of planning, and a few pointers from us, he’ll have an even more amazing time.

Father’s Day is slowly creeping up on us, this year happening on Sunday the 21st June. If you ever have trouble remembering the date, Fathers are celebrated in the UK on the third Sunday of every June.

Father’s Day is about honouring all of the special men in our life, and it’s a day that all of us get joy from, not only Dad.

Unlike Mother’s Day, which is a traditional Christian holiday, known as ‘Mothering Sunday’, the idea behind Father’s Day is a lot more modern. It also took a lot longer for it to be the established celebration it is now.

We actually followed America in celebrating Father’s Day, so when the date was set to the third Sunday in June, we tagged along with that one too.

The first Father’s Day was in 1908, when a West Virginian Church held a special sermon honouring fathers, after 362 men were killed in a mining accident. Parishioners gave out flowers, both red and white, to honour the living and the dead, in commemoration of all that our fathers do for us.

This was the first and only time the church community celebrated that event, which seems it was more about the mining accident than starting a national holiday.

The following year, and again in West Virginia, a woman called Sonora Smart Dodd made it her mission to set up a national Father’s Day. Upset by the fact that there was a Mother’s Day, but no corresponding day for fathers,

She petitioned her local community and government to change this. Originally, she wanted Father’s Day to be on June 5th, which was her own father’s birthday, as a way of honouring him.

Washington state celebrated its first Father’s Day in June 1910, although it was delayed until June 16th.

Father’s Day slowly spread to other states, however it was never really as popular as Mother’s Day.

Many countries, including Spain, Italy and Croatia, celebrate Father’s Day on March 19th. That date is the Feast Day of St Joseph, the husband of Mary and adoptive father to Jesus. The day was traditionally used to celebrate the fatherhood as well as spiritual fathers.

Father’s Day is about spending time with those special men in our lives, whether it’s an overdue visit home, or a special meal out.

Present ideas can be a difficult thing to come up with and they’re always about traditional ‘male’ gifts, although nowadays there is a huge range to choose from.

We thought we’d do something a little different, in an attempt to make it far more personal. We have some freebies, things to make and Dad, and of course a couple of ‘traditional’ ideas too.

A FEW FREEBIES

We thought we’d start with some stuff to make and do. We’ve had our team put together a few free things you can use to make (or get the kids to make) something original for Dad. You can download them and use them as you feel. Just click on the blue Father’s Day Freebies button below to download them straight to your device.

The first is a Father’s Day card front, the kids can add what they feel to the inside. We love the illustrations our guys have drawn and are sure there are lots of ways they can use those. The cut outs below are brilliant too. Just download, print, cut-out and put wherever you like.

FATHER’S DAY FREEBIES

These freebies are proving to be very popular so we’ve had our team come up with a few more designs. We’ve zipped them up so you can download them to your device. Once again, print them off and let the kids go crazy. Inside, there are picture to print and stick onto cards or use as wrapping. Banners to let Dad know he’s the best and some stickers to print and stick wherever you like. Enjoy, and feel free to share this page link with family and friends.

Just click on the blue link below the pictures.

FATHER’S DAY FREEBIES – 2

DIY DAD

Now we certainly don’t mean go online and buy Dad one of his favourite tools as a gift. That’s almost as bad as buying Mum a new iron for Mother’s Day. We actually mean go all DIY yourself and create Dad something from you and from the heart. It may not look incredible, it could be a little rough around the edges, but I can assure you it’ll be his favourite thing.

Let’s be honest, we still have a little spare time at the minute, so why not get ahead of the game and make his gift now. If he’s in the house with you, sit him in front of the telly, with a bag of crisps and a drink and tell him not to move. He won’t complain at that one.

So here goes with a few ideas, starting with: The SOUTH WALES LIFE list of DIY Dad stuff……

DENIM TECH SLEEVE

We really love this one because we can never decide which protective sleeve to get for our prized tech. We reckon something personal and hand made is the answer. Dad can put his tablet inside a customised felt-lined denim sleeve. A half-yard of each fabric lets you make enough for yourself – and a few friends.

MATERIALS

  • 1/2 yard denim, medium weight (6 to 8 ounces)
  • 1/2 yard wool felt
  • Iron-on adhesive
  • Craft knife and straight edge
  • Awl or rotary punch
  • 2 leather washers
  • 2 caps and studs
  • Rivets and setter
  • Sewing machine and supplies
  • Waxed twine, 12 inches long

STEPS

  1. Following dimensions in diagram, or create a template on paper and cut it out.
  2. Cut denim so it’s several inches larger, in all dimensions, than the wool felt. (Both pieces of fabric should be slightly larger than template.) Fuse denim to felt with iron-on adhesive, ironing on denim side.
  3. Place template on fused fabric and lightly trace with a pencil. Cut out, using craft knife and straight edge.
  4. Use awl and a mallet, or rotary punch, to make small holes, as indicated on template. Place a small scrap of excess fused fabric at same points on felt side (to reinforce rivets). Align hole of a leather washer over one hole and set a rivet through washer, fabric, and scrap. Repeat for other rivet.

Here’s a couple of simple templates to get you started.

MAP ARTWORK

This is one of those gifts that will not only make Dad smile, but in these days when we don’t know when our next holiday will be, it’s a perfect chance to be transported back to a time, and place, when you all had a great trip away. Transform a map from Dad’s favourite holiday spot, or it could be his childhood home, or even the route of a family trip last summer. Get yourself a frame, print it and put it in and you have a lifetime framed keepsake.

FAMILY MAP SCRAPBOOK

This is an extension of the map theme and can be a family project: Celebrate those summer holidays spent together by gathering maps, mementos, and more from your favourite getaways, then compiling everything into a bound book for Dad to browse through when he’s feeling sentimental.

To make this craft, start by cutting the map to fit, and glue it in place along edges. For the frame, cut a rectangle larger than the photo, and cut slits into the corners. Next, prep the envelope by unfolding an existing envelope; trace around it on a double-sided map. Continue by cutting out, and then fold and glue it to match the original. You can of course add so much more to the project. Be creative, we all have the time right now.

SHIRT CUFF CARDS

Fashion a card to look like a shirt cuff, and then use it to present a gift of cuff links perhaps. Cut a 3 1/4 by 9 inch rectangle from strong paper/card; round two corners, as shown in the picture. Rubber-stamp a greeting on one side (these are cheap as chips online). Gently bend paper in half and cut four slits for cuff links. To make cuff links, hook 24-gauge wire onto a button’s shank, securing with needle-nose pliers. Cut wire to half an inch and loop through a second button’s shank; repeat.

FATHER’S DAY COUPONS

Let’s be honest, who doesn’t like to get a token book, and knowing how much Dad’s love a deal, he will go crazy for this one. There is so much you can offer; a free car wash, lawn mowing, breakfast, and much more, all using DIY designs. Let the kids’ imaginations run wild. Simply make this project with strong paper, card or other craft paper you have lying around your house. Deck out the coupons with designs using markers and an array of colours that will catch Dad’s eye. Once the kids make a cover, they can fasten, staple, or sew the booklet together.

DAY WITH DAD

Kids love to be in charge, so let them take Dad on a Father’s Day “date” of their choosing. Ask them to consider what Dad would like best: a movie, a museum, or a rugby game? This can be a perfect way to surprise Dad and offer a chance to plan an activity the whole family can join in on. A handmade card tells him they’re treating. Kids can buy or draw the “tickets;” Mum can cut a slit for them in the card.

DAD LIBS

Of course your kids love him “thiiiiisss much! But with this fill-in-the-blanks Father’s Day game, they can get specific in pinpointing Dad’s traits, like his favourite foods and what makes him laugh (beyond their artistic interpretation of him drawn in the frame on the card’s front, that is). To make this fun craft, you will need to find the Dad Libs template, we’ve put a couple of ideas below. After this step, the options are endless to answer the Dad-related sentences. Kids can use colourful markers to write why they love Dad and more.

This is not Dad’s Libs related we just thought you’d like it. It’s very sweet and would be perfect in a homemade or bought frame.

FATHER’S DAY NOTEPAD

Give Dad the perfect addition to his office space with a DIY notepad. This is so easy to do. Just wrap a rubber band around a notepad cube and have the kids write greetings and make drawings on two sides with a broad, pointy marker. (Fine tips will get caught between the pages.) Move the band, and decorate the other two sides. Tie the notepad with a colourful ribbon. As an added gift, slide in a pen.

POPS FOR POP

Satisfy Dad’s sweet tooth with something besides the usual chocolate and cakes. These Father’s Day cake pops are too cute-and delicious-to pass up!

These are really nice, fun to make and we are sure he’ll devour the lot, it is Father’s Day after all. Of course you could buy some lollies and stick his name on them but why not have a crack at making these sweet treats. The full details are right here. POPS

So let’s on from the stuff you can make to the things you can do and share with Dad and the whole family.

PLAY A ROUND OF GOLF

Golf is back on in South Wales, as is Adventure Golf – take a look at our feature HERE. If the weather is bad, or you plan to stay at home on the day, you can still get in a quick round, at home. You can all get involved, have a laugh and even a drink as you play a few holes. How about setting up a MINI-GOLF game around the house and garden.

Obviously this will only be putting, unless you have acres of grounds, but with a bit of imagination you could certainly get 9 holes set up and have a little course thing going on. Best of all it’s only going to cost you time, a bit of printing and a little bit of imagination.

Be creative, think of a theme for the day, possibly a Zoo Course with all the kids stuffed animals. Driveway or Garden Golf if the weather is nice. Under, Around and Over – you’ll need great imagination for this one.

Seriously, this will be amazing no matter how much or little space you have. Dad will love, because you will love it and it’ll be a perfect way to spend a Father’s Day. Actually, forget that, we reckon this would be brilliant fun at any time.

LOCKDOWN ESCAPE

Dad’s are notoriously difficult to buy for, especially when you ask them what they’d like and the inevitable ‘nothing, don’t make a fuss’ is the response. Truth is, Dad’s like to be spoiled, no matter what they say.

You may well have spent 24/7 with him during lockdown, or not even seen him at all because of the restrictions. One thing’s for certain, now there is a sense of normality returning to our world, he’s going to want to blow off some steam, aren’t we all. So how about planning a post lockdown escape where you Dad gets treated to the one thing he’s either missed, or craves most of all.

Dad & Son

FAMILY PICNIC

Leave all the fancy stuff behind for the day, grab Dad, get a whole load of food and head out into the great South Wales outdoors, or the garden, or backyard, for a good old fashioned family picnic. Pack all the essentials, plus a few things you and the kids may have made for him and get out to Dad’s favourite outdoor spot (his own private space) for a fun and stress-free meal.

Family Picnic

THEATRE AT HOME

Many families with children have spent long days at home wondering what they can do to keep little ones entertained. With schools closed for a long period, it was up to parents to find alternatives to keep their kids occupied and amused. So, in addition to getting them involved in the other suggestions, here’s one that’s designed especially for them.

This is really good as we haven’t been able to go to the theatre for so long now. Suggest they dress up and put on a play to surprise Dad. They can recreate a story, a movie, or let their imaginations run wild or best of all, invent a new story. They’ll love the idea of being actors for a day and you’ll all have a great time together as a family.

DAD IDOL

This one may not be as crazy as you might think, especially with celebrities being relatively accessible through social media. We are real believers in the phrase ‘if you don’t ask you don’t get get’ and in this case, it could pay real dividends.

Find out who your Dad’s favourite celebrity might be, it could be a sports personality, a musician or even a comedian. Then, in search of a real meaningful and very special gift, you could try reach out to these celebrities on social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter) and ask them if they would possibly be able to wish your Dad a Happy Father’s Day – or even if they could create a short video personalised to your Dad to make his day.

First of all, it won’t cost you anything, second you’ll instantly become the favourite child, and most importantly, it will be cooler than cool can be.

In case you’re worried about what these celebrities might say when you ask, well they’ll either not reply or you’ll get an outright no. But you know what, remember they have been self isolating too and boredom creeps in no matter who, or where you are. Go on, give it a go but remember this is about Dad’s favourite idol, not yours.

VIRTUAL GET TOGETHER

Even though lockdown has eased and we don’t have to stay at home as much, that doesn’t mean we still can’t keep make plans to virtually meet up with the special people in our life. We are so blessed that we live in a digitally connected age, so make the most of it. You can surprise Dad by organising a group video call with everyone in the family, no matter how far away they are during this lockdown.

One of the ways to do this is through HOUSEPARTY the group video calling app that’s now become the app of the moment. Much of its success is down to the fact that it allows you to do calls in groups of up to eight people. Of course, we can always go to the lockdown saviour ZOOM.

Like so many group apps, they make it possible to create “rooms” where users get together to do the video call as a group, as well as play Trivial Pursuit, Guess Who, Pictionary, and other classic games, as if you were all together in your living room! Can you imagine the look of surprise on your dad’s face?

There is always the hope that restrictions will be eased by Father’s Day but hopefully the ideas we’ve given will be great no matter what. Here’s a few more, which need no explanation.

  • Bake a Delicious Cake & Prepare His Favourite Meal
  • Go Down the Memory Lane and Play Some Games
  • BBQ
  • Get Him A Local Take Away
  • Home Made Sweet Treats
  • Spa Time
  • Support Local Buy From an Open Shop Close by

Now more than ever, your local businesses need you, so if you’re looking at buying Dad a special something, take a look at the local retailers who have now reopened or perhaps gone online, or maybe send him some flowers using a local florist? Or even vouchers for his favourite restaurant.

We have loads of other features if you want to do something special with Dad.

OUR SOUTH WALES – Take a look at some of the nice places to visit around South Wales.

If you’re looking for somewhere to take Dad for a meal, take a look at our feature below.

GET READY TO EAT OUT AGAIN

And if you’re looking for tickets for a Gig or Show, take a look at our entertainment pages below.

ENTERTAINMENT

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