Sick of trying to keep the kids entertained while stuck at home? Conscious of how much screen time your kids are getting? You’re not alone! Plenty of parents across Newcastle, Lake Macquarie and the Hunter Valley are chewing their fingernails and almost tearing their hair out while they try to balance working from home, home-schooling, and generally trying to keep the kids occupied.
Despite the fact that COVID-19 has somewhat hampered the freedom we have previously enjoyed to get out of the house and stay active – especially if you don’t want to risk going to public places, or you’d rather not have to wear a mask while you’re watching the kids play at the park – there are plenty of activities that the whole family can enjoy, right in your own backyard.
We’ve put together some ideas for some fun backyard activities the whole family can get involved in, to get you and the kids outdoors, to enjoy some fresh air and help you get your daily dose of Vitamin D.
Grab some larger boxes and build a fort in your backyard. Even better, if you have a patio, deck, or pergola, set up your fort under cover to protect you and your fort from rain, wind and weather. Then, get creative!
Use some masking tape to attach cardboard tubes from your empty rolls of paper towel or wrapping paper, to make flag poles.
Grab your arts and crafts supplies and keep the kids occupied for a couple of hours by decorating your boxes – paint them or use a permanent marker to draw bricks or stones, battlements, or windows.
Use a safety knife or box cutter to add some windows to your boxes – you could completely cut out circles, squares or rectangles, or fancy arched windows, or cut only three sides to make a window that can be opened and closed.
Add some cushions and blankets, and hey presto! A comfy, cosy hideaway for the whole family where you can play make-believe games or board games, set up a reading nook where you can sit and read to each other or the kids can sit quietly and read to themselves, or you could even have a tea party.
Set up your portable canopy or tent and camp out in your backyard – if you have both, and you have the space in your yard, connect them to make an even bigger camping area. Even if you don’t have a tent or canopy, stretch a rope or pole between two points and throw a tarpaulin over it and secure the ends to make your own triangular-shaped tent. If you’re lucky enough to have all three (and a big enough backyard), put them all together to create a weather-resistant mini-city in your backyard!
Better yet, if you have a large enough deck, pergola, or patio, set your tent or tarpaulin up undercover for extra protection from the elements. Add blankets and cushions, beanbags, foam or blow-up mattresses, sleeping bags and pillows, so your tent is extra cosy and comfortable. Grab an extension lead, so you have power in your tent if you need it.
Get the BBQ going and do some outdoor cooking, for a more authentic camping experience – you could even get little campfire going in a portable (or permanent) fire pit and roast some marshmallows.
There are two ways you could approach this one. The first way is to treat it like an Easter egg hunt, where the kids must find and collect items:
The second way is to check online for a ready-made checklist of things to search for in your backyard, to get them exploring nature!
Lockdown means many people have been cut off from their usual gym. In fact, even before lockdown came into place, plenty of us were hesitant to go to an indoor space where no-one was wearing masks, everyone was breathing hard, and there were plenty of sweat and germs on shared equipment.
If you’re keen to keep up or get back into a regular fitness routine, and build some healthy habits in your kids, this is the perfect time to invest in some home fitness equipment or create an outdoor fitness circuit that requires little to no equipment, to keep you and your family active in the comfort and safety of your own outdoor space!
Set up a circuit around your backyard, under your carport, and on your patio or deck. If you have fitness equipment, keep it safely undercover on your patio, inside your screened enclosure, or in your carport or garage, if you have the space to spare. Play some music, set up a timer and keep some water handy, and get ready for your own family fitness free-for-all!
For a practical addition to your home, that will increase your living area and have your whole family wanting to spend more time enjoying the outdoors, talk to Hunter Patios and Additions.
As licensed builders, with 35 years’ experience in designing and building home extensions, glass or screen enclosures, pergolas or patios, constructing beautiful hardwood decks, or installing hardy steel flooring systems to create the ultimate pest- and weather-resistant outdoor area, Hunter Patios & Additions can help you make your backyard and outdoor area the place that everyone wants to be, all year round.
For more information call Hunter Patios & Additions today on 02 4966 8488 or fill out our contact form to have a Hunter Patios & Additions representative contact you. Alternatively, if you’re ready to dive on in, click here to request a quote and we’ll have one of our patio and home addition experts contact you shortly.