It finally feels warm enough to spend the days, evenings, and on occasion, the nights, outside in the garden (three cheers). You can wear the kids out more easily, and enjoy the long summer days eating and drinking al fresco. It’s also a chance for you to spruce up your backyard, and ensure that it’s a place that your whole family will enjoy and appreciate. The following are some areas you might want to look at, if you’re planning on spending every sunny moment outdoors, enjoying the company of your family and friends.
As previously mentioned; the summer is a great time to get your kids in the garden and tire them out before bedtime. If you have children who just can’t seem to switch off, because “it’s still light outside and it’s not nighttime yet,” then a sunny weekend playing outdoors is always a blessing. You can send them out after breakfast, and they don’t have to come in until it’s time for bed. However, you’ll need to ensure that they are using up enough energy, and have enough things to do outside, so that won’t be tempted to creep in and watch cartoons.
If you have a hose pipe, brilliant; you have a water fight game to hand straight away. You could also buy a sprinkler to attach to the end of the pipe, which your kids, and any dogs you have, will love running through to cool off in the summer sun. Paddling pools are also a classic way to have fun outside, you can pick one up quite affordably from your local supermarket; fill it up while the kids are eating their Cheerios, and voila, a day of fun awaits them. Although you should never condone combat; water balloons and water pistols, for water fight games, can keep everyone screaming and laughing for ages, and you’ll ensure that plenty of energy is being used up, as they run around and duck in and out the trees.
If you want to invest a little bit more in your kid’s outdoor activities; climbing frames and playhouses are great ways to develop their imagination and cognitive skills (which will wear them out in the meantime). Check out how to Make Your Garden More Appealing For The Kids and get some inspiration on what to buy. For spending-free alternatives, don’t forget how much kids love a den; all you’ll need are some old sheets and blankets, and a washing rack or tree branch or two. Get the little ones involved in the den’s construction, and they can scoff their sandwiches in there, and play make-believe all day.
Another of the great pleasures that the warmer weather brings is the option to enjoy your meal times outside. Whether you’re sat outside on a Sunday morning with a coffee and a newspaper, or showing off your dad skills at a family barbeque; it’s always going to beat eating inside as you look out at the rain. Eating outdoors means you get a decent hit of vitamin D and it’ll feel like a treat (because it’s such a novelty in the UK) for all those joining you.
Spend a little time cleaning up your patio space or decking area, and get the family involved in adding some plant pots and outdoor lighting. It doesn’t take much to make an outside area look inviting; for some tips and ideas on sprucing up your paved areas, take a look here. One you’ve sorted out your outside environment, you might want to start looking at some garden furniture so that you can enjoy your char-grilled chicken kebabs in style.
Have a little look online, or visit a store to discover what would suit your garden and family the best; find one near you and take the kids and your better half along to test some pieces out. Once you’ve set up your al fresco dining area, you’ll be eating every meal out there, until it rains of course; so, switch the festoon lights on and soak up the atmosphere with a cold beverage.
Get some inspiration and check out some simple summer recipes to make the family here: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2007/aug/19/foodanddrink.recipes1 and don your apron and chef’s hat. If you have managed to revive the BBQ from the depths of the shed, then start experimenting and enjoy cooking outside; you’ll be able to keep an eye on the kids, and your garden will smell amazing (be warned, the neighbours might turn up to sample the food).
Time To Chill Out
Even though you want your garden to entice the kids, and ensure that they’re playing outdoor as much as possible; you’ll also want to create an oasis that the adults (or big kids) in the family will appreciate. Therefore, it’s always worth investing some time and thought in the plants, trees, and landscape of your garden. Try and create an area where you can happily sit with a beer and relax as the kids play with their water pistols at a safe distance, and ensure that they know where it’s okay to play, and where they should avoid.
Plant pots and wooden boxes are a great way to introduce some flora and fauna t your garden, especially if you don’t have a natural green thumb. It’s worth heading to your local garden centre and asking them for tips on what are the low-maintenance options when it comes to plants. Investing in a bench, perhaps to match your dining furniture, will create a chilled-out area for you and your partner to enjoy (and perhaps indulge in a bottle of red when the kids have gone to bed). Solar-powered garden lighting will make a decorative addition to your outdoor space in the evenings and will stop you tripping over and rogue gnomes that the kids have moved.
The more time and effort you put into your garden space in the summer, the more you and your family will be able to enjoy it. You’ll make some great memories, and your garden will be all set for the summers ahead; so, pull up your sleeves this weekend and reap the rewards for the rest of the sunny season.