Fall is well underway and that means cooler temps, shorter days, and wetter weather for much of the country. Here in Boise, we've already had our first freeze and everywhere you go, folks are wrapped in their hats, scarves, and puffy jackets. As much as we love all things autumn, we have to admit that there's some anxiety mixed in with our enthusiasm this year.
Colder weather means new challenges when it comes to balancing staying safe, socially distanced, and sane. Still, there are plenty of ways to make the most of the season and we want to share some of our favorite ideas for family fun. So, dress the kids in their sweaters and dry, cozy LONE CONE MudBoots, get out there, and have a blast!
Play in the Leaves
Entice your kids to help you rake the leaves with some good old fashioned fun. Before you bag them up, build as big of a leaf pile as you can manage and let them jump on in! Even if you haven't got a yard to rake up (we're jealous!), there are sure to be plenty of fallen leaves in the parks near your home. Layer up and go leaf stomping. There's just something so satisfying about that CRUNCH!
Tailgate at Home
Are you a family of sports fans? While you can't be in the stands this year, you can still root for your favorite teams. The nice thing about the prevalence of smart phones and tablets is you can stream the game almost anywhere. Invite close friends or neighbors to bring their favorite game day foods for a driveway tailgate picnic.
Plant Flower Bulbs
Fall is the ideal time to plant bulbs for next spring. Whether you've got a backyard garden or a collection of pots on the windowsill, bulbs are simple to start and easy enough for kids of all ages to help plant. Tulips, daffodils, and hyacinths are all great choices.
Visit an Apple Orchard or Pumpkin Patch
Enjoy the last of the season's harvest at a local farm that lets visitors pick their own fruit. This classic fall activity lends itself well to social distancing and comes with some sweet rewards. Hayrides may have taken a hiatus this year, but many farms still have one-way corn mazes that make for a fun afternoon outing.
Connect with Nature
Need a little motivation to get outdoors when the mercury drops? There are two meteor showers coming up in November that coincide with a crescent moon, which makes for good viewing conditions. The Northern Taurids peak on the night of November 11th into the 12th, and the Leonids on the night of November 16th into the 17th. If you're more of a daytime family, try bird watching. As the trees become bare, it's actually easier to spot our feathered friends!
Build a Bonfire
Cozy up around a backyard bonfire. Depending on how old your kids are, let them each pick a book to read aloud at a weekly fireside story time. Or just enjoy the chance to warm up, toast some s'mores, and spend time under the stars.
Host a Virtual Pie-Eating Contest
Okay, we can't be the only ones drooling at the thought of cider donuts, pumpkin pie, and all the other delicious fall eats. Why not indulge in a bit of friendly competition and hold a pie-eating content over Zoom? Or, if you're not ready to dive in face first (pun intended), have a bake-off instead and have the kids cast votes for the prettiest or most imaginative treats!
Go Puddle Jumping
We can't forget one of our absolute favorites - puddle play! It's a great way to get outside on a rainy day, and kids never seem to get enough of it. Pull on those rain boots and have some good old-fashioned fun stomping through the puddles with your littles this fall!