Affordable fun for your family this summer
With hot summer days approaching, stay-at-home parents will be on the look-out for affordable things to do to keep their children entertained. It can sometimes seem challenging to find cheap and easy ways to keep kids active through the summer, especially on the most sweltering hot days of the season. Children have a tendency to get bored with the same old routine every day, so try your best to mix it up a bit to keep them on their toes!
Visit a State Park
For a mere ten dollars, your vehicle registration and plate sticker can get you into any Michigan State Park for an entire year, thanks to the new “recreation passport” program started by the state in October of 2010. Ninety-eight state parks and recreation areas will be available for your use, giving your family access to a wide variety of activities that include bike trails, boat launches and historic and cultural sites for endless exploring. Lakeport State Park near Port Huron is only about an hour west on I-94, and offers a great beach on Lake Huron, as well as public bathrooms and picnic tables. Children of all ages will have a great time building castles in the sand or skipping stones across the lake. Try out www.michigan.gov to find a park that meets your needs for some family fun this summer.
Have a camp-out in your own backyard
Why not set up a tent in your own backyard? You don’t have to load the kids in the car and drive for hours on end for a great camping experience. Get out the sleeping bags, lanterns, bug spray and covered fire pit for a “stay-cation” any night of the week. Older children will enjoy setting up the tent without Mom and Dad stressing to get up a shelter for the night and the little ones will enjoy . You can keep it simple with some hot dogs roasted on the fire followed by some camp fire songs and s’mores for dessert. The best part about camping in your own back yard is of course having the option of going inside to sleep if the bugs or weather become too much to bear.
Have a “car wash” in the driveway
On those super hot days, who minds getting wet? When the kids get bored of the plastic pool and sprinkler, go ahead and get out those sponges, buckets and soap and let them have at it with the hose. They will love “helping” and your cars will get a good cleaning too! This also works for bicycles, wagons and any other ride-on toys you may have that probably need a good scrubbing anyway.
Summer goes by fast, so make the most of it
Even though the days are long, the season always seems to go by so quickly so be sure to spend a little time outdoors and make the most of everyday before school rolls around again. Family fun seems more manageable if you keep it simple. Kids will be happy with easy to plan activities such as picnics at the park, family bike rides after dinner and day trips to the zoo or local beach. Don’t forget the sunscreen!