We woke up to a bit of bad news this morning. Well, two bits of bad news.
The first is that someone has stolen a chair from our patio. This really isn’t such a big deal. The chair wasn’t expensive and they could have done worse. However we were very surprised, our neighborhood is generally peaceful and has a low crime rate. Oh well.
The second bit of bad news was the weather. Cold and rainy. We only spent about an hour outside rather than the 5-6 hours we had been enjoying earlier this week. Again, it could be worse.
Today we were hoping to play some outdoor games but that just didn’t happen. We did however manage to move all of our outdoor sports and games equipment from the inside closet to the outdoor storage shed for easier impromptu play.
Among our stash is…
Jumping Games: jump rope, hopscotch, and skip it.
(For anyone interested, I made the stand out of a $1 plunger from Dollar Tree, a cardboard tube, a plastic baggie, and 1/3 of a roll of duct tape. Its not the prettiest thing in the world but its functional and sturdy- which is more than I can say for a lot of the $40 tee ball stands I almost bought before reading product reviews. LittleMan has had this since Christmas and he loves it. If anyone wants a tutorial on how to make it, let me know and I will write up a quick how-to post.)
Soccer. LittleMan has loved soccer since he could first walk. I dug up some action shots to show you. The one on the left is LittleMan in his Socatots class at 2 years old, the one on the right is LittleMan in a one-on-one game with me back in January. We have a couple soccer balls, one regulation game size and one smaller so its a little easier for him to dribble.
Miscellaneous Equipment: red/orange/yellow/green/blue/purple pool dive rings, hoola hoops, orange cones, chalk.
The miscellaneous equipment is really the fun stuff. It can be used so many different ways. You can fashion a ring toss by throwing the dive rings at the orange cones. You can make a color hunt by laying the dive rings out and challenging the children to gather things of each color to put into the rings. You can use the chalk to make tic tac toe board, gather natural materials such as leaves, pine cones, acorns, or rocks to use as x’s and o’s. Use the hoola hoop rings, orange cones, and jump rope to fashion an obstacle course.
All of the above are old news. Games and equipment we’ve had laying around for months, we just moved it outside for easier access. Earlier in the week, when the weather was still decent, I introduced LittleMan to a new-to-him game: basketball.
Because of our small budget and our small patio space, I didn’t want to invest in the usual store-bought basketball hoops which would be costly and take up too much room, so I made our own basketball court out of two Dollar Tree laundry hampers, two tea cup hooks, and a utility knife.
This project was too easy! First, I cut the bottom out of both the laundry baskets. Then I measured LittleMan to see how high to screw in the tea cup hooks, one hook was hung on either side of the patio to form a small two-hoop-court. Chalk outlines form the center court and free-throw lines. I used one white basket and one blue basket so it would be easier for LittleMan to remember which one he is supposed to shoot at.
Be sure to check out all 7 days worth of outdoor play ideas in our Pimp My Patio Series!
Day 1- Making Things Colorful
Day 2- Music and Pretend Play
Day 3- Bugs and Birds
Day 5- Mud Kitchen and Clean Up Station
Day 6- Hide-a-Ways and Sun Protection
Day 7- Gardening