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9 Things Your Kids Will Love to Do

Posted By Jessica Fisher On May 24, 2014 @ 6:02 pm In Fall,Family Fun,Springtime,Summertime,Winter | 5 Comments

Gear up for fun with these nine activities kids are sure to love.

This post does include affiliate links. If you make a purchase through those links, I am paid a small amount in way of advertising fees. Your price does not change, but your purchase indirectly helps support this site. So thanks!

9 things your kids will love to do

As summer vacation approaches, my 18-year old me tends to think of lazy days by the pool, sleeping in, and otherwise relaxing in every way I know how. 42-year old me knows that those ideas are clearly not for my season of life with six kids to love on and care for.

I’m honestly not too worried about it. I can see far enough into the future that I know my nest will be empty before I’m ready for it. One of the things I forgot to report in yesterday’s weekly ramble [4] was that FishBoy16 and I went to the DMV to get his driver’s permit this week. Oy! How did we get here?

He was just born, I swear it.

Regardless, if you like me, are thinking about summer and how to avoid the full-on, kids-veg-on-the-couch-watching-movies-and-playing-video-games phenomena, consider these tried and true screen-free activities that kids love.

Let’s add a disclaimer, kids 12 and under will love these.

While my 16 year old might not embrace all of these — he’s a little past fingerpainting and playdough — he certainly would enjoy some of them, especially if his buddies were over and they were making crazy tie-dyed tshirts or he got to eat all the cupcakes he wanted.

Older kids can be encouraged to help the youngers. And quite honestly, doing that is a great excuse for biguns to hold onto childhood just a little while longer.

Tie Dye

Tie Dye Tshirts [5]

Most summers we’ve made a set of Tie Dye Tshirts [5] or my sister has helped the kids while FishPapa and I went away for a weekend. Don’t go out and buy new tshirts. Dig out all the stained white shirts and dresses that your kids have mangled and give them new life with Tie Dye.

We’ve used this Tie Dye kit [6] before.

diy gift, playdough kit, homemade playdough

Play Play Dough [7]

Making homemade play dough takes about five minutes tops. You reap the rewards in saving money on store bought play dough and your kids can dye it whatever color they like. Make a play dough kit [7] now  so you’re prepped for the summer.

Older children would appreciate being able to use real clay to create permanent works of art, like Fimo [8].

Fingerpaint Creations

Fingerpaint [9]

You can make your own fingerpaint [9] with regular pantry staples. Check out Janel’s tips for painting with kids [10] so you don’t go crazy in the process.

Chopped for Kids knives

Play a Game of Chopped [11]

My littles have loved playing Chopped [11] where they get to make their own special creations in the kitchen. My older boys have always been bummed to miss out, so I think this is an activity that older kids would gravitate towards.

Mud Cupcakes

Decorate Cupcakes

The “cupcake craze” may be over, but it’s a classic activity that kids love. Decorating cakes is fun; decorating cupcakes is doable for more than one child. They can customize it with all their favorite toppings. Be sure to make a big batch of homemade buttercream frosting [12] or the ultimate chocolate buttercream [13].

Try these fun cupcakes to make:

Play Dress-up

Kids love to play dress up. Gather up all their different ensembles into a tub so that you’re ready to pull it out on the next rainy day. Consider making some of these:

summer popsicles

Make Popsicles  [22]

Most commerically made popsicles are full of junky additives and colors. Make your own to save money and feed your kids something better. Here’s my tutorial on how to make popsicles [22] the easy way.

Draw with Sidewalk Chalk [23]

My kids have always loved to draw with sidewalk chalk [23], particularly when we make an effort to be extra creative and recreate their favorite movies and characters, like these Jedi.

keep reading skills strong

Read a Great Book

Summer is an excellent time for your kids to journey through books! Consider these great series books [24] or a family read aloud [25]and make reading hour [26] a regular thing at your house. There are lots of ways to encourage your kids to read [27].

Grab a copy of my mom’s book, 50 Books to Enjoy with Kids [28]. It’s a great resource and reading guide to help you choose good books as well as have extension activities to go with.

I encourage you to pick a couple activities to add to your routine this summer. These are all things that my kids have enjoyed over the years and that continue to liven up our summer days.

What do YOUR kids love to do?

This post does include affiliate links. If you make a purchase through those links, I am paid a small amount in way of advertising fees. Your price does not change, but your purchase indirectly helps support this site. So thanks!


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[2] free updates via email: http://feedburner.google.com/fb/a/mailverify?uri=lifeasmom/oGdA

[3] my free seasonal newsletter: http://eepurl.com/q47Vb

[4] yesterday’s weekly ramble: http://lifeasmom.com/2014/05/the-weekly-ramble-32.html

[5] Tie Dye Tshirts: http://lifeasmom.com/2010/06/tie-dye-tshirts-be-a-yes-mom.html

[6] this Tie Dye kit: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003W0N75A/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B003W0N75A&linkCode=as2&tag=oflwtf-20&linkId=U5263XSPFBK6UDJP

[7] Play Play Dough: http://lifeasmom.com/2012/12/diy-on-a-dime-make-a-playdough-kit.html

[8] like Fimo: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0002VE2TW/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B0002VE2TW&linkCode=as2&tag=oflwtf-20&linkId=XVQV5WKKYE2SKFMU

[9] Fingerpaint: http://lifeasmom.com/2013/05/homemade-finger-paint.html

[10] tips for painting with kids: http://lifeasmom.com/2012/08/tips-for-stress-free-painting-with-kids.html

[11] Play a Game of Chopped: http://lifeasmom.com/2014/03/playing-a-game-of-chopped-for-kids.html

[12] homemade buttercream frosting: http://goodcheapeats.com/2010/07/homemade-buttercream-frosting/

[13] chocolate buttercream: http://goodcheapeats.com/2013/09/easy-chocolate-buttercream-frosting/

[14] Mud and Worm Cupcakes: http://lifeasmom.com/2011/03/mud-worm-cupcakes-urs-spring-recipes.html

[15] Marshmallow Flower Cupcakes: http://lifeasmom.com/2009/08/creative-birthday-cake-idea-garden-of.html

[16] Sunflower and Mums Cupcakes: http://lifeasmom.com/2010/09/fun-fall-learning-activities-for-children.html

[17] DIY Dress Up Skirts: http://lifeasmom.com/2013/10/diy-dress-up-skirts.html

[18] Fairy Wings: http://lifeasmom.com/2013/06/summer-fun-diy-fairy-wings.html

[19] Elsa Costume: http://lifeasmom.com/2014/01/diy-elsa-costume-from-disneys-frozen.html

[20] Anna Costume: http://lifeasmom.com/2014/01/diy-anna-costume-from-disneys-frozen.html

[21] Hawkeye from the Avengers Costume: http://lifeasmom.com/2012/10/last-minute-costume-idea-hawkeye-from-the-avengers.html

[22] Make Popsicles : http://lifeasmom.com/2013/06/summer-fun-make-homemade-popsicles.html

[23] Draw with Sidewalk Chalk: http://lifeasmom.com/2013/04/get-out-draw-with-sidewalk-chalk.html

[24] great series books: http://lifeasmom.com/2013/01/10-great-book-series-for-kids.html

[25] family read aloud : http://lifeasmom.com/2010/11/family-novels-you-dont-mind-reading-over-over-over.html

[26] reading hour: http://lifeasmom.com/2013/07/summer-fun-reading-hour.html

[27] ways to encourage your kids to read: http://lifeasmom.com/2010/02/7-ways-to-encourage-your-children-to-read.html

[28] 50 Books to Enjoy with Kids: http://lifeasmom.com/fifty-books-to-enjoy-with-kids

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