As the numbers on the thermometer begin to climb, hours of precious sun and daylight extend past the dinner hour, birds are noisily communicating, and the weather is warming; families feel a strong tug to embrace the freedom of outdoor life and activities. Those scooters, bikes, skate boards, soccer balls, and kites are calling the young, and yes, the young-at-heart, in every family.
Don’t Waste a Minute – Get Out and Get “In” It
Since strong family bonds are created by sharing designated, happy, healthy, special moments where laughter, listening, silliness, curiosity, creativity, and even a bit of good sporting competition, happens; the freedom of weekend outdoor time, in great weather, offers the kiddos, and parental’s a variety of places to reinvent fun. Spring is fleeting. Good weather is very fickle. Time to get moving and embrace family time in ways that inspire the spirit, and increase the heat beat.
Creating a Fun-Do-List Which Cannot Be Done Indoors
Outdoor fun should include all the behaviors that cannot happen within the space restrictions of the lovely, cozy, and absolutely confining, indoor rooms of your wonderful home. Activities which require space, include ball-related- sports, bouldering, nature walks, berry picking, planting a garden, flying the newest (easy to launch) kites, just to mention a few energizing options for Spring.
Taking into consideration, the interests of each family member, then crafting the fun-do-list, and anticipating the exhilarating time spent together, is a huge part of this family, quality, adventure time.
Top 5 unique, outside-of-the-box, energizing activities for Spring
1. Go Bouldering – Many local modern green-space parks have amenities for all kinds of family interests, including splash pads, and small boulders, which the littlest family members can safely climb in no time. Larger boulders are challenging for older children, teens and parents too. This engaging fun has risks, soft rubberized landing pads, and offers the family increased flexibility, balance, strength, mental focus, and increased self-esteem. Climbing web sites offer locations, times, and training too, and the selfies taken, are priceless.
2. Play Pizza Tag - This game gets everyone running. A designated area is marked off as the playing space. A chef is chosen, and that person stands in the middle. Three toppings are selected by the children, and they decide which tasty topping to be. Usually, pepperoni, cheese and mushrooms sound delish to all. When the chef calls out a topping, those who chose it, run to the other side of the rectangular green space or patio, trying not to get tagged. When tagged, they must go to the oven (to bake on the pizza). Last person tagged, wins. The energy expelled creates healthy bodies and appetites. Then, have a pizza and award the winner with the Lucky Poke Games, for continued fun.
3. Kids Croquet is the newest version of a standard back yard game, but with a substantial variation. The 7 wickets are large curved arc-shapes and placed in patterns which can be increasing more challenging. The 2 croquet balls are 14 inches in diameter, and are cloth covered, which young children will find easier to control. This exercise is do-able fun, the challenge can be continuously increased by wicket placements and timed to add outrageously funny pressure.
4. Kayak and Paddle Boating are options for living near, or road tripping to, water parks or lakes. Infants love the smooth ride of a kayak, and tandem kayaking is great partnering family fun. Riding close to the water is relaxing, and traveling a mile in about 20 minutes, can be done, once everyone masters the paddling technique. Learning new skills together, for children as young as 4 and up, and feeling in control of the sleek, skinny, boat, is incredibly satisfying and exciting.
If paddle boating, situated higher up on the water, sounds more fun, floating along in two’s, or as a single, affords the peddlers fresh air, lower body exercise, and an opportunity to race challengers, without having to learn special techniques. Peddling is a great work out, and the environment has those special moving water, splashing sounds, evergreen fragrances, and the chance to enjoy nature at its very best with your family and extended family, too.
5. Blongo Ball – This is a game that all family members can master, and develop their own tossing techniques, to earn points. Two golf balls are tied together with a short rope. Each player swings and then releases the balls, underhanded, toward the ladder target, which has 3 rungs. The top rung is 1-point, middle rung is 2-points and bottom rung is 3-points. Everyone gets 3 turns. The first person to reach 21 points wins. Families play in teams and try to knock the opponent’s balls from the rung, to increase the challenge.
Everyone Needs Vitamin “N”
Getting outdoors in the good weather months, or in any weather, creates healthy habits for a lifetime, as the entire family absorbs Vitamin N (Nature). Moving and being energized in healthy ways, develops interests and skills, necessary for wellness and resilience that today’s techie world demands. The classic sports, baseball, basketball, tennis, as well as running, hiking, swimming, biking, fishing and camping, are all excellent types of recreation. These five unique suggestions that are captioned above, are all great motivators to get the children interested in being back into the great outdoors, where the possibilities for endlessly engaging experiences await, them and the entire family.
Don’t forget to take along your Lucky Poke Games to enjoy as, yet, one more unique experience. Being allowed to get dirty, muddy, sweaty, wet and noisy, and finding out that “it’s ok to poke holes”; what more can any child wish for, as they get physically active for least an hour, every day., and longer when planned family adventures happen.