By: Jennifer Murray

40 Things To Do Outside With Your Family Rather Than Hibernate

I’ve been reading Fifteen Minutes Outside: 365 Ways to Get Out of the House and Connect with Your Kids , (Thanks for the recommendation Emily!), and it’s been a great motivator in continuing to enjoy the outdoors with the boys as it gets late in the fall.  It gives ideas for each month of things you can do outdoors as a family, regardless of the weather. It’s amazing how reading a few ideas can help you brainstorm even more ideas!Even with a chill in the air, there’s still plenty of entertainment to be enjoyed in the great outdoors.  And the benefit not only for the kids but for the parents far outweighs the extra time it takes to put on socks, shoes, and jackets. 


Things to Do Outside with Your Family

So here’s 40 Things to Do Outside With Your Family, instead of letting hibernation kick in for the year:

    1. Go for a family bike ride.
    2. Do a nature scavenger hunt.
    3. Make homemade bubbles and watch them blow in the fall breeze. (Thanks, Kimba!)
    4. Make chalk people by tracing the outline of your child’s body while he lays on the sidewalk/driveway.
    5. Make s’mores on the grill or over the fire pit.
    6. Play hide and seek in the dark. (Daylight Savings Time works in your favor for a game before bedtime!) 
    7. Plant bulbs that you’ll be able to enjoy in the spring.
    8. Paint with sidewalk chalk paint.
    9. Celebrate the shorter days by taking in a sunrise or sunset together.
    10. Drink apple cider or hot chocolate outside.
    11. Deliver baked goods to the neighbors.
    12. Jump in a giant pile of leaves.
    13. Take a hike at a local park.
    14. Make crayon rubbings with leaves.
    15. Draw pictures in the frost in the morning.
    16. Collect pinecones to decorate for the holidays.
    17. Race around the block.
    18. Play at a park playground. (You might even have the whole park to yourselves!)
    19. Throw things: a football, frisbee, bean bags, etc.
    20. Play in the mud.
    21. Feed the ducks.
    22. Play tag.
    23. Gaze at the stars and learn about constellations.
    24. Read a book outside on a picnic blanket.
    25. Go watch airplanes take off at a local airport.
    26. Visit the zoo. (There’s plenty of indoor areas to warm up and the animals are more active than in the warm summer months.)
    27. Climb a tree.
    28. Make a pine cone bird feeder. (Thanks, Myra!)
    29. Rake leaves.
    30. Give geocaching a try and find a treasure. (Thanks, Alyssa!)
    31. Collect a variety of seeds (acorns, walnuts, etc.) and talk about the life cycle of plants.
    32. Go on a photo walk and take pictures of animals, plants, clouds, and things around you.
    33. Look for insects and worms.
    34. Skip rocks at a creek, pond, or lake.
    35. Plant a tree.
    36. Clean out the garden or landscape.
    37. Look up at the clouds and tell what you think the cloud formations look like.
    38. Collect as many colors, shapes, and sizes of leaves as you can find.
    39. Make shadow animals with flashlights on the garage door or on the side of your house.
    40. YOUR TURN!!!  What do YOU enjoy doing with your kids outside?

14 Responses to “40 Things To Do Outside With Your Family Rather Than Hibernate”

  1. Emily @ The Pilot's Wife
    November 9, 2011 at 9:34 am #

    Love this list! And I’m glad you’re enjoying the book.

    • Donna
      November 9, 2011 at 9:43 pm #

      It’s on my list to buy too after you told me about it!! Great recommendation!

  2. Kierstin
    November 9, 2011 at 9:38 am #

    Hey Jen! We usually do this inside but with some nicer fall days we moved this activity outside which made clean up much easier! We make oobleck – the kids love it and you could always read the dr Seuss book before or after.

  3. Emily
    November 9, 2011 at 11:37 am #

    Ummm, Nick would be the first to admit that he is a geocaching nerd! Soo… if you all want to go sometime it would make it more fun for me 😉 hehe!

  4. Susan McCurdy
    November 9, 2011 at 2:31 pm #

    When it’s just rain w/out the lightening and thunder …my kids love to dance in the rain and puddles. Thanks for this list … I read an article the other day about geocaching…what a neat idea! Something we might try sometime so thanks for the link.

  5. Donna
    November 9, 2011 at 9:42 pm #

    I was just looking at this book on amazon – I couldn’t stop thinking about it after our talk about it at breakfast after Relevant. I need to buy a few copies for gifts too!!

  6. Jamie
    November 9, 2011 at 10:11 pm #

    I am such a hibernator and by the time February rolls around, serious seasonal depression. I literally printed this off for later!

  7. edmond0925
    November 10, 2011 at 5:48 am #

    Definitely a great list! These activities can be enjoyed with our family! thanks for sharing!

  8. Cheryl
    November 10, 2011 at 1:10 pm #

    Geocaching is the best. My kids, and I, will hike much farther just to find those things. We also like to climb trees, play football, watch clouds and make up things we see in them, and get our garden ready for winter.
    If it snows we love to make snowballs, go sled riding, make a fort, make a snowman, etc.

  9. Theresa
    November 10, 2011 at 2:51 pm #

    I love pulling my kids around the yard in our sled and letting snow melt in our mouths. Pure bliss.

  10. Heather @ Nourishing the Heart
    November 12, 2011 at 8:48 pm #

    We recently made homemade rockets which we launched at the park! Fun. I’ll have to check out your link for bubbles – the kids always love bubbles!

  11. Helena
    November 27, 2011 at 11:12 pm #

    I love the list as well! One thing I’ve done this fall that was on the list was to plant bulbs. I can’t wait until spring to see how they work out! The Geocaching suggestion from everyone also sounds like great fun!

  12. Yolanda
    May 29, 2013 at 8:17 am #

    What a wonderful list! Another thing you can do is make your own kites and let the children see whose is the highest!!


  1. Words To Inspire – Week Of 1-2-12 - January 9, 2012

    […] for ideas to get you and the kiddos outdoors, even in the colder weather ?  Here is a list of 40 Things To Do Outside With Your Family.  I know in my family, we are all much happier if we get outdoors for some fresh air every day, […]

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