Entertaining a two-year-old indoors can become a bit boring, so when meltdowns ensue and I can tell he needs to burn some energy, we and I will go out to the yard to play. My child loves playing outdoors, which is so great. As an only child, he has learned to be entertained by the simplest pleasures in life which is definitely something I want to continue cultivating in him. From being content with the sticks in the yard to filling up a kiddie pool, here are my favorite ways to make the most of my very un-fancy yard (and bank account).
Let’s begin with the most basic of them all: playing with sticks. We will go outside to partake in this extraordinarily simple task when all we really crave is to breathe fresh air. I thoroughly enjoy the summer heat and appreciate that my backyard is shaded, so we can pretty much go outside whenever we please. Because of the shade trees there are a plethora of sticks to use for play. He will poke sticks in the ground, at the tree stumps, at the AC unit, and at me until I’m ready to call it quits and go back inside. I appreciate the simplicity of this and the opportunity to connect with nature in a more tangible way :).
A step up from sticks is to bring out the bubbles. I purchased a three-pack of bubbles from the $1 section of Target. I have quite a bit left because this backyard play is slightly more involved than the stick option in that I have to remember to bring the bubbles outside with us. Once out, however, great fun is had! Kids love bubbles and become giddy with excitement, which is the cutest thing ever. The only drawback is that it becomes tiresome to blow bubbles endlessly, so make sure there’s a really cool stick available when you’re ready to switch gears!
Finally, and with more preparation, is the grand kiddie pool! I honestly only have memories of swimming in kiddie pools as a child, so I am ready to create some fun kiddie pool memories for my baby, too. While the prep work for going outside to swim is significantly more involved than going outside to play with sticks, the amount of fun and time spent outside is so much greater!
I’d love to know: what are your favorite outdoor summer activities?