Autumn Fun for all the family

by Judith


Judith Holloway works with entrepreneurial mums and helps them to be great in business and in the ‘business’ of parenting.

The weather’s changed, the leaves are like a thick, luxurious carpet. The wind can sneak in at any moment and whip them up into whirling dervishes.

Yes, autumn is here. Welcome.

The positives of autumn are still to be had…
Just imagine snuggling up by the fire with a hot chocolate, or smelling the glorious rich, bold smells that only slow cooked steaming casseroles can offer ready to be eaten, perhaps with warm crusty bread. There will be many crisp, dry, bright blue days yet to be appreciated.

This is the perfect time to get outside with your family for some wonderful autumn fun and adventures.

Here are 7 tips and activities to help you enjoy an amazing autumn with your family.

1. Wellies out

WelliesGet your children (and you) dressed up for it – old clothes are best here!

Put your wellies on and go outside and find as many puddles as you can and — puddle jump!

Yes, jump in as many puddles as you can. See how high the water splashes when you jump in it. Who’s the winner?

It may be messy and yet it’s really good fun too.

2. Lovely Leaves

Big autumn leafAutumn is known for the changing colours of leaves and the many huge piles of them heaped and scattered on the ground. Use this to your advantage for activities.

a) Leaf play
On a dry day there’s nothing finer than kicking, crunching, throwing and marching through the leaves. Get your children to gather up the leaves and put them in one big pile. How big can they make the pile? Is it soft to land in? How quickly can they kick the leaves from the pile?

b) Leaf painting
For this activity you’ll need:

~ a good selection of leaves that are intact and leathery (dry and papery don’t work as well)
~ a painting apron or old shirt
~ lots of old newspapers
~ large pieces of plain paper (I’ve used lining wallpaper and cut the lengths I’ve needed)
~ thick paint – 1 or 2 colours
~ small shallow trays (for the paint)
~ small dry sponges or thick paintbrushes

Get started:
Do this outside on a good day!
Put a painting apron/old shirt on your child
Lay the newspapers out on the table and floor
Prepare the paint (if it needs to be mixed)
Put the plain paper on one side so it’s accessible
Get the trays and sponges (paintbrushes) ready on the table
Sort the leaves out so they’re ready to use
Dip the sponge in the paint (not too much) and press gently on to the veined side of the leaf.
Put the painted side of the leaf on the paper and press gently and evenly
Pull the leaf back carefully and hey presto you have a beautiful leaf print. Instant art!
Repeat the sponging on the leaf and print again (You’ll have to experiment to find out how much paint to use on the leaves to get the best prints.)
If you have a second (or third) colour you can print on top of leaves already printed if you want to or print separately

When you’re printing with more than one colour you can talk to you child about the magic of what happens when colours are mixed. A great learning opportunity.

c) Leaf Guide and Recognition
Whilst you’re collecting the leaves you could take along a guide to help you learn about the trees and the shapes of their leaves. Here at there’s a lovely, basic, handy little guide for you to download.

3. Fruit and Vegetable Picking

AppleYes, there’s still a little time to go picking or digging. There’s nothing better than picking your own fruit or (digging) vegetables. It’s a great time to teach your kids about where foods come from. It’s great fun and a healthy activity.

To find out where your nearest Pick-Your-Own farm, try this as a starting point

If you do know where your nearest farms are and haven’t been – then go and check them out!

4. Cooking

This is a great way to get kids involved and learning in the kitchen. Especially when it’s cold and wet outside and the kitchen is warm and inviting … and gorgeous things can be made and eaten.

I remember first teaching my own children to make a crumble mix for an apple crumble. They loved getting their hands in the bowl and getting all messy. And of course, it could be eaten after it was cooked. Mmmmm. Yummy. Hot apple crumble with custard.

5. Cycling

CyclingGet on your bikes!

Cycling is a great way to exercise, have fun and get fit at the same time and you can plan your routes with your children. They can help with the directions so they’ll know where they are going. You’re also teaching them practical navigation. It’s a very handy skill to have. Look at Sustrans for cycle routes in your area and start planning.

6. Let’s Go Fly a Kite

Up to the highest height! Let’s go fly a kite and send it soaring …

The autumn winds are great for kite flying. Find some open ground or parkland and send your kites soaring, dipping and diving. It’s brilliant fun.

When did you last fly a kite?
I did it a few months ago with one of my boys – he’s into BIG kites, a Flexifoil 4.9 square metres. That means it’s REALLY big. It only needed a slight breeze to get it up off the ground. Well, the kite went up really high and I was lifted about 3-4 feet off the ground. It was great fun to do and I was very glad my son was there to help me keep my feet on the ground!

7. Autumn Treasure Hunt (and Picnic)

Hunt for the treasure from  clues. When all the treasure had been found it’s time for a well earned picnic – and rest.

A modern version of the treasure hunt is geocaching. You locate hidden containers called geocaches using a smartphone or GPS and you can share your experiences online. Have a look at this website for further information

What activities have you done so far this autumn?

And what activities did YOU do when you were a child?

I’d love to hear …
Leave a comment below and let’s get a conversation started.

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