Last summer I came across a Facebook page that was dedicated to spending more time outside and away from technological distractions. They aim to be outside at least 1000 a year! At first I was stunned and thought that was a hefty goal to aspire to, but when broken down it's actually very doable. Children spend on average 1,200 hours a year looking at a screen, I found this statistic a little shocking but also can understand how accurate it is. My girls are 3 and 5 and I allow them set T.V. /Screen times and since self quarentining that time allowance has gone up -slightly- Last summer I was very intentional about getting the kids outside, so much so we actually got rid of our T.V and only watched an occasional movie. Not sure where in the last few months we started splurging more on screen time but I've decided to again be more intentional about getting the kids and myself outside and using this quarantine time to reconnect with nature and my family.
We hit a different trail every week! Phi is still working his normal crazy hours between his corporate job, Little Heroes and Photo House so we make it a point to spend some time away from the house once a week to breath in fresh air and feel the beautiful earth beneath our feet. Grand Ravines and Provin Trails are a few of our favorite spots close to home. Now that visiting trails is about the only thing to do, outside of being home, I suspect we will discover new beautiful spots to add to our favorites list.
Never underestimate driveway fun!
The girls can spend HOURS playing in the driveway... Biking, bubbles, scooters, and sidewalk chalk.... sometime they like to pick beautiful flowers (weeds) and replant them which I may regret later this summer and we are also big fans of driveway picnics/reading on a blanket. Just being out in the fresh air helps us all reset when things just feel a little too intense inside.
Backyard fun - Puddle Jumping
Our backyard is a mud pit this time of year... Which can be fun for the kids but I have to admit the clean up isn't my favorite so we usually spend time in the back yard on beautiful sunny days, but there is something just beautiful about puddle jumping. The girls love the tree swing and jungle gym and playing keep away with our dog Jackson <3
We have been around the neighborhood at least twice a day for the last month; I'm pretty sure the neighbors think we're crazy because there is always a little mishap on our walks...Recently Evelyn wanted to walk Jackson. Well she dropped the leash, he took off so it was Evelyn chasing Jackson, Phi chasing Evelyn and Jackson and I was with Vivian who was crying on the ground because she tripped on her scooter. And every walk we take has something like this happen but they are pretty comical and offer great laughs in this time of worldwide heartbreak.
This is a fun one with little that also helps them discover/understand better what they are hearing or seeing. I picked up a pre made scavenger hunt game at Target I give each of my girls 5-10 cards at a time and while we are out walking they find there objects and we talk about each thing they find. I remember Evelyn had a bird card, she couldn't see the bird but she heard the call of a bluejay and I thought it was pretty awesome she could Identify that sound.
This year for Easter we've decided to forego most of the traditional Easter basket items and instead gift a Pot each for Fairy Gardens. They will have wildflower seeds to plant and Fairies to watch. We hope this helps them care for their own plants and give them another reason to spend time outside. We've also decided to go this route because we're heading down the minimalist path and don't need anymore toys, baskets, etc. This is something they don't have and can help them explore more of the gardening world.