Sunday 14 September 2014

Five Outdoor Activities for some Good Old Family Fun

Does it take some coaxing to separate everyone from the television? Do your children flinch away from sunlight like age-old vampires? If you’re on a mission to banish the couch potato blues, you’ve come to the right place. Here are five fantastic outdoor activities that the whole family can enjoy together. Warning – resulting fun may be overwhelming.

1. Camp Out in the Back Yard

You don’t have to pack the car to the gills and brave the hazards of communal toilets to enjoy a night under the stars. Pitch a tent right in the backyard, roast some marshmallows over a portable heater and listen to the sounds of nature, as you step away from the comforts of your home. This is an awesome way to introduce the uninitiated to the wonders of camping and a great way to spend some quality time with the family.

2. Scavenger Hunt

With a little preparation, you can create a scavenger hunt that promises to be just as exciting as a treasure hunt led by Jack Sparrow and the other Pirates of the Caribbean. You can confine the scope of your hunt to the back yard, tailor it for a nearby park or use the whole neighbourhood as your playground. A scavenger hunt is a good way for the kids to keep their minds and bodies active as they learn about their surroundings and run about gathering clues.

3. Have Dinner Outside

This time of year is wonderful for bringing the family’s dinner ritual outside. Fire up the grill and toss the footy around while the scent of delicious barbeque fills the air. Set the table as you would inside, light a few lanterns and voila, you have an outdoor bistro fit for a king. If you don't have a large backyard or if you’re a city dweller with only a balcony, a full-sized grill may not be practical. Don’t fret, you can always pick up a disposable BBQ tray.

4. Plant a Garden

Nothing beats the smell of freshly picked herbs from the garden or the taste of organically grown fruits and vegetables from the backyard. Planting a garden is a wonderful season long project that can involve the whole family. If you were struggling to find a way to make your kids interested in vegetables, nothing instils a sense of wonder and excitement in children like watching seeds they planted grow into mature plants. Again, if you don’t have much space or just have a patio or balcony, you don’t have to be left out. Have a look into container gardening; it's a practical alternative for people who don’t have much space.

5. Turn the Driveway into A Work of Art

With a few pieces of sidewalk chalk, your kids (or your inner child) can turn your driveway into a work of art. Or you can create a veritable wonderland of chalk games like London Calling or Hopscotch. It not only gets the kids playing outside, but it also provides them with a canvas other than the hallway walls for their art.

So there you have it, five easy ways to get your family out of the house and soaking in some much-needed vitamin D. What are some of your family’s favourite outdoor activities?

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