Tuesday, July 03, 2012

Cheap and Frugal Backyard games Stay-cation fun

I asked my husband for some advise on keeping the kids busy this summer without spending a lot of money.   here are some his suggestions 

I love listening to friends tell me about those awesome, expensive trips they go on with their families. I really do like fantasy stories. I have a squad of kids. If you do too you know where I'm heading. Get 'em together in an enclosed space and it's instant carping and complaining that doesn't stop until arrival, when it switches to: "Can we go home now?" They could be staring at the Grand Canyon or Niagra Falls, but what they see is a giant delay in getting back in front of the TV or geting home to their friends. Don't forget the expense and time invested in getting them there. The Answer: Stay-Cation! Here's some ways to have a blast in the place where you've already made sure you have all the comforts of home.

1. Backyard Campout or Camp-In Grab your sleeping bag, lantern and some marshmallows and head out to the backyard.For a low cost outdoorsy experience, You can't beat the old backyard. If your tent is a nice store-bought one or just cobbled together with blankets and sticks, a backyard camp out is just the ticket for the desire to be outdoors, but with all the conveniences of home. Even better...In case of rain, you can adapt with a basement or living room camp out. I know it's not traditional, but I like s'mores from the micro just as much as a campfire

2. Driveway or Hallway Raceway- Set up lanes with sidewalk chalk and whip out your big wheels or matchbox cars. All your need is the checkered flag.

3. Olympic Games - The backyard Olympics might host such games as distance Frisbee, Wiffleball, sponge ball or nurf target shooting.

4. How about a tossing some soft &  not sharp obects - These games are cheap and so much fun. You can use hula hoops and nurf balls or sidewalk chalk and those pool sponge balls.

5. Frisbee Golf(sort of) - Gather your Frisbees (clubs) together and make a course of targets(holes). FORE!!!

6. Harmless Hunting: How about hunting? Put down the guns. Pick up your smartphone or camera. The one who has the most wildlife, such as birds, squirrels, rabbits, etc. in the center of the photo in their collection of pictures wins. This is way harder than it sounds, so be an easy referee.

 7. An Independence Day Movie Marathon - A box of microwave popcorn(I highly recommend Super-Butter), some soda from the store and a few dvd's and you're good to go. How about Independence Day with Will Smith, Patriot with Mel Gibson, or for the Realists out there, The History Channel's Series "The Revolution" is perfect. Time it so the evening can be capped off by fireworks on some of your local channels. 

8. Scavenger Hunt - Hide "treasure" around your property or have them collect natural treasures in the yard, like a brown stick, a grasshopper or a round rock. I'd recommend staying away from the buzzing bugs and the three leafs per stick plants. 

9. Water Balloon/Squirt Gun Battle - For a couple of bucks you can get a bag of dozens of water balloons and a few cheesy squirt guns. The cheesier the better. hat way no one gets bowled over by those pressurized water cannons. 

For a little added expense, you can try:

9. Triumph Sports Trio Toss, Bag Toss / Ladder Toss / Washer Toss from Amazon. Like the name says you have a variety of games to choose from in the set for hours of fun.  

10. The Franklin Sports 5 Game Sports Combo Set from Target has Badminton Racquet, Instructions, Pump, Rope, Paddles, Discs, Shuttlecocks, Volleyball and those hand held curvey ball whipping things. 

11. Toys R Us and Walmart  have a wide variety of croquet sets you can pick up. They come with everything you need to get started. Change courses when you get the hang of it for even more fun.

12.  Remember Lawn Darts, the razor sharp tips attached to a vaguely missile-like projectile. They've evolved some. Nowadays, the game to get is Jarts, similar shape with a soft rounded plastic tip. Not as dramatic looking, Not as deadly, but just as much fun as you remember. 

13. Everybody loves Badminton. Just saying "Shuttlecock" is fun...admit it. Most major retailers, like Walmart, Target and Toys are us carry the sets. They usually start around $15 or so.

14. If you thought badminton was an obvious choice for this list, How about Volleyball. Portable kits range from $25 to a few hundred dollars and most major retailers carry complete sets.

15 Who here was a cub scout if you were you KNOW Tetherball. Smack the ball back-and-forth has spread beyond your average playground. Simply jab the pole deep into the ground and you're to commence smacking around. A basic stab-it-in-the-ground pole and ball usually starts at about $30. A set with a weighted base can run into the hundreds.

Who needs Disneyland? You can have a blast and stay active with kids and adults right in your own back yard. Just a little ingenuity and maybe a minor expense and you and your family will be running around like you all were ten years old again. Have Fun!

1 comment:

Jane Anne said...

Great ideas! I like the idea of having a scavenger hunt. The kids loved hunting Easter Eggs in our yard so much at Easter, why not hide something else for them to find?

My Works-For-Me-Wednesday post: Food Fight