Outdoor Living (Part 3): Just for Fun!

As more and more people move out of urban areas due to lifestyle changes brought on by COVID-19, houses with outdoor space are in hot demand. Not everyone is privileged enough to have a backyard of their own–we fully acknowledge this. However, many of these activities can be done in public parks or playgrounds. Our family spent all winter outside in 2020/2021–it was our only way to socialize. We learned a LOT about how to keep our kids entertained and occupied, even in the freezing weather. In this three-part series, we’ll share our favorite ways to get the whole family outside–no matter the weather! (Please note, these are mostly affiliate links. If you purchase something we’ve suggested, you get a great item, and your purchase benefits our blog. Thank you!)

We’ve had SO MUCH FUN outside this past year during COVID. It has completely changed our perspective on life, entertaining, and play. The 1,000 Hours Outside challenge has also done wonders for our family and our way of living. Here are some of the things we’ve done for fun, at our house or with friends. Please share your own family favorites in the comments!

  1. zip line
  2. play structure/swing set (get one free or used on Facebook Marketplace; if you’re not handy, there are people you can pay to disassemble and reassemble the structure. Ask on your local parents/residents Facebook page)
  3. climbing dome (You can also hang a hammock in it so kids can nap or read outside. Also, there are ideas on the web of how to wrap it up in winter to make an igloo!)
  4. soccer rebounder wall (or build it yourself and get ideas on Pinterest)
  5. baseball throwing net
  6. a bucket of wiffle balls and a bat; use old frisbees for bases
  7. soccer nets
  8. badminton
  9. croquet
  10. pickle ball (don’t get a regulation net unless you have a huge space–it will be too long! This one fits nicely across our driveway)
  11. spike ball
  12. Nerf guns
  13. Super Soakers
  14. foam balls for water fights (instead of water balloons–more sustainable and you won’t have to pick up shards of broken balloons all over your yard)
  15. stomp rocket
  16. rocket slingshot copters
  17. remote control cars; if you’re especially ambitious, build yourself a track/course for the cars!
  18. homemade obstacle courses (See Pinterest!)
  19. Razor 360 “trick bike”
  20. make gigantic bubbles with a homemade mix (find recipes on Pinterest) and old ropes of different sizes to make the bubbles
  21. bouncy house/water slide (or rent one for a special occasion)
  22. sprinkler
  23. climbing holds for trees
  24. slack line
  25. ninja warrior slack line
  26. snow shoes
  27. LL Bean inner tube sled (heavy, but durable and great even for adults)
  28. foam sled (these are light and fast)
  29. bring the indoors outside (Legos, board games, art supplies, etc.)
  30. laser tag
  31. capture the flag (organize an epic game with friends and neighbors. Use laser tag, Nerf, or water guns. Set up barricades, boundaries, forts, a jail, etc. There are plenty of ideas on the internet!)
  32. skateboards/longboards
  33. horseshoes
  34. foam swords/light sabers
  35. projector for outdoor movies
  36. build a bike jump (you guessed it…Pinterest!)
  37. rollerblades/ice skates
  38. make a stick fort (if you have access to woods)
  39. Kubb, the Swedish lawn game
  40. puddle jumping (this is a big one in our house…and it’s free!)
  41. jump roping

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