By Katie Davis
Do you have the kids this weekend? Perhaps you have your kids in a few weeks? Well, spring is here, and it’s time to start soaking in the better weather and planning some family-friendly activities.
Read through some of these ideas for enjoying the season both indoors and out. Don’t worry about going over-the-top or spending too much dough – most of these ideas are free or quite inexpensive.
Enjoying time with your children isn’t really about finding the biggest price tag. It’s about the opportunities and time you all have together.
Feel free to share your spring activity ideas below.
1) Find a Nearby Park or Trail – Spring can be one of the best times of the year to head outdoors and appreciate nature. Whether your kids like going hiking, want to play soccer or baseball (or any sport, for that matter) at the local park, enjoy spending time at the closest playground or just want to run around, this is a great opportunity for allowing the kids to release their energy a bit and for you all to be active together.
If your children already have bikes, scooters or skateboards sitting around the house, encourage them to bring those along as well. Just remember to pack along the appropriate safety gear if your kids decide they’d prefer to ride around the park.
2) Make Chore Time a Game – Let’s be honest. You sometimes feel guilty making your kids do their chores during the time they’re with you. But there are plenty of ways to make chore time fun. Kids like to compete and be given challenges. Tell your kids that it’s time for a treasure hunt, which requires that all participants find items that don’t belong in a certain room. Then, to win the game, they must get a certain number of items to the correct space. This way, cleaning toys or anything else up becomes a bit more intriguing.
You can also make chores more fun by simply putting on some high-energy, kid-friendly music and having everyone dance around, sing out loud and act a bit goofy while still getting the spring cleaning done.
3) Check Out a Farmers’ Market, or Plant Something of Your Own – So many delicious foods are at their best during this time of the year. If it’s time to pick up some groceries, make the decision to head over to a local farmers’ market rather than the usual grocery store or mega mart. Make sure to involve your kids in the process of selecting the best fruit or veggies, bringing along plenty of bags for carrying items and then going home to enjoy the fresh fare.
If you’re feeling even more adventurous, and have the space to do so, start a garden together. Whether you decide to plant vegetables, flowers or anything else, make sure to have some proper gear ready for those involved. This can be a true family effort with the kids helping you select seeds or bulbs and getting their hands a bit dirty while helping you weed, plant and water the space that’s now your garden.
4) Get Artsy – and a Bit Messy – Kids like to make a mess. Allow them to do so on your terms. You can purchase play dough (always a favorite), finger paints, non-toxic markers or crayons, construction paper and kid-friendly glue and/or scissors or even household items like cereal, buttons and seeds for this designated art time.
Encourage them to get the creativity flowing and don’t just head to the other room. Join in with them and ask them about their artwork. They’ll be proud to show it off and pleased that you are interested in their work. Just make sure all items are age-appropriate, especially for the young kiddos.