Summer may be over, but that doesn’t mean the outdoor fun has to stop! As a Together Counts™ Ambassador, my family and I have learned to embrace fall’s crisp days as an opportunity for more outdoor activities. Here are my 3 favorite ways to make the most of fall:
Whether you live where pumpkins really grow on the vine or if your pumpkins are trucked in, making an event out of going to get your pumpkin is worthwhile. Talk about the varying colors, shapes, and sizes of the pumpkins. A great game for the pumpkin patch is to weigh one pumpkin and try to find another pumpkin that weighs exactly the same weight. It gets the kids thinking as well as running all around trying to find just the right one.
After you get home why not keep the pumpkin theme going with a kid-friendly pumpkin meal? Kids love to help in the kitchen and mixing up batter is easy for even the youngest sous chefs. Try adding a cup of pureed pumpkin to your favorite waffle or pancake recipe. Throw in a dash or two of pumpkin pie spice and it will be a sure fire hit!
A leaf hunt takes a few minutes but when you couple it with a fun leaf themed meal it can jump from barely noteworthy to a family tradition. Start with a simple leaf hunt. Have your kids look for all different color leaves, all different shape, all different sizes. Match, compare, and count the leaves. Make a huge pile if you can and jump!
But don’t stop there.
Make a leaf themed meal with your kids. Start with spinach and kale. Have your children wash and rip the leaves so they are manipulating the leaves and notice that these foods are leaves, too. Add your favorite toppings like chicken, almonds, strawberries, croutons and poppy seeds.
After a salad lunch it’s time for something sweet! Use packaged cookie dough (or your favorite recipe) and leaf shaped cookie cutters make some fall themed cookies. Using food color and a little milk your children can paint the leaf cookies after they cool. A perfect ending to a new family tradition.
Being active and intentional with our children can seem daunting when our to-do lists only ever seem to get longer. Simple activities like these can be something extra special when they are coupled with a great family meal that is not just eaten together but made together as well. What’s your family’s favorite way to celebrate the changing seasons?
Allison McDonald is the mom and former preschool teacher behind No Time For Flash Cards, a blog filled with learning and play for young kids. When she isn’t blogging about crafts and learning you can find her running with friends or exploring the forests around her home with her two kids. Allison lives outside of Seattle with her daughter, son and husband.