Between the cooking, cleaning, and of course – 9-5ing – finding down time to spend with the kids is tough and limited. And while you’re keeping busy, your little ones have traded family bonding time with time in front of the T.V, computer, or playing the latest video game to hit the shelves. This fall, spend a little less time on chores and work, and spend a little more time on the people in your life who really matter.
Here are some fun ideas for entertaining the kids while engaging in some seriously needed family bonding time.
Pitch a tent with sheets: Set up a family size tent in the living room using extra sheets. Turn off all the lights and tell ghost stories as you would during a regular camping trip! You can even try one of our delicious s’mores recipes to really make it feel festive.
Incorporate nature into craft time: Go outside and collect some of nature’s own embellishments – acorns and colored leaves can be used in countless craft ideas!
Take a hike: Visit your local park and choose one of the easy hiking or walking trails so as to not overwhelm your little tike. Brush up on your plant knowledge before leaving so you can point out and name the various flora on your way.
Create a haunted gingerbread house: This activity might be traditionally saved for the holiday season, but you can easily create a Halloween-themed gingerbread house! Get creative with the design - purchase edible embellishments in traditional colors like black and orange. You can even use cotton candy to create the spider web effect.
Collect lightning bugs: Another use for those trendy mason jars! Have your little one spend some time chasing and collecting lightning bugs. Be sure to poke a few holes in the cap to keep them from suffocating. Use your lightning jars as décor in the yard!
Go Apple picking: ‘Tis the season for apple picking! Take the whole family on a trip to pick some juicy apples – your kids will have a great time picking out the perfect fruit, while learning a little about nature and how plants grow. Then, use all those apples to bake some tasty recipes or even craft a tote with them!
Celebrate reading: Encourage your kids to read by throwing book parties at the completion of a book. Serve food and plan activities related to the book at hand. An easy activity is your own version of “pin the tail on the donkey” simply print out a poster size photo of the main character and have the kids “pin” a body part on him.
Grow their own Halloween pumpkin: Pumpkins take about 4 months to grow, so plant your seeds around June. They will keep busy taking care of their plant. Encourage them to document the progress of their plant with photos and notes.
Pizza Party: Organize a make-your-own pizza party! Lay out a variety of toppings so your little one can mix and match their favorite toppings and create their own specialty pizza.
Then, invite friends and family to help you finish off those extra servings (or send them on over to our office in NYC!)
Draw on the walls: Scolding your kids for drawing on the wallpaper with crayon is a thing of the past. Paint one of the walls in your child’s bedroom using blackboard paint – now they have their own reusable canvas that they have the creative freedom to decorate any way they please!
Decorate their school supplies: Fall means back to school, so let the kids have some fun by customizing their school supplies. You can purchase embellishments from your local craft store, or get creative with what you have at home! Cut out old magazines and use scrap fabrics for a cheap DIY.
Fun-filled day at the park: Never underestimate the power of a nice day out. Take the kids out for a day at the park, but bring a bag of fun with you. Think kite flying, paper airplane competitions, remote-control boat sailing, and loads of juicy fruits to keep the family full and refreshed.