Backyard Water Toys

Backyard Water Toys

Summer is here and kids and adults alike are looking for ways to cool down from the heat and maybe have a little fun at the same time with creative backyard pool ideas.  There are a couple of ways we can do that, you don’t need to travel far just to your own backyard.  Grab a hose and put on a swim suit and you’re pretty much ready.  Wait, you do need a couple of backyard water toys for you and the kids to have some fun this summer.

Backyard Fun

Consider hanging out in the backyard with the kids your very own “stay-cation”.  You don’t have to spend hours in the car trying to make it to the nearest beach or even traveling to the local public pool.  In your own backyard you can put together your own water slide.  All you need is a slide, which is relatively inexpensive and your hose.  If you have a smaller yard then you can get a sprinkler with some fun attachments that your little ones can run through.  If you’re fortunate enough to have a back yard pool there are tons of blow up flotation devices they can sit on or paddle around with while learning how to swim.  Here are some cool sprinkler attachments that can give you hours of fun.

Icy Treats

It’s every parent’s nightmare, you are sitting outside with the kids and you hear that noise…the music from the ice cream truck.  It is coming through the neighborhood and your kids are already jumping up and down wanting a treat.  While you can’t reroute the ice cream truck you can make your own treats at home that are cheaper and healthier.  You can even get the kids to help or have them make their own.  All you need are some cool molds that will hold some juice and a handful of popsicle sticks, both are readily available at a craft store.  You can make enough for the whole family or the whole neighborhood.  You can use fresh fruit juices so they are a bit healthier, but lemonade or any flavor of Kool-Aid your kids like will work in a pinch.  Let’s face it, kids love popsicles and this way you can at least control the sugar.

Too Hot to Play Outside

There will be the occasional day where it is just too hot or maybe it’s pouring rain and the idea of sitting in the backyard just doesn’t work for you then don’t worry.  You can turn your bathroom into a tropical paradise.  Yes, it will be messy but at least it is contained to one room.  You can throw some pool toys into the bathtub and fill it up will cooler water.  Drag a radio in the bathroom and put on some tunes.  Sit back and enjoy one of the yummy popsicles that you already made.  If you have smaller kids this is great.  You can at least make the most of the day.

Things You Need to Know Before You Buy More Toys

Things You Need to Know Before You Buy More Toys

There is no shortage of kids toys on the market and your kids are inundated with advertisements for the latest and greatest toy.  It can make it really hard to find a toy that is both fun and educational.  You love your kids and you absolutely want them to have the best start in life and that includes the right toys.  But there are some things you need to know before you buy more toys to make sure you get the best bang for your buck.

How versatile is this toy?

The best toys for kids are the ones that are versatile and serve more than one purpose or that keep them really active.  Your kids don’t need to be running around all day but they should be engaged with the toy.  Physical activity is as much a part of development as those that are mentally stimulating.  The more fun your child is going to get from the toy the better.  You want a toy they can do a lot with, for example building blocks they can make so many different things and it stimulates the imagination.

Toys, like placing different colored shapes in the right slots do teach your children spatial relationships but they really only have one use and your child will grow out of it quickly.  Other toys like riding toys can teach them first to walk by giving them something to hold on to and later how to ride and use their legs.  The more versatile the toy the better.

What is your child going to learn?

You want your kids to learn while they play, so toys that can teach in a fun way are ideal.  Will this toy teach them to count or recognize the letters of the alphabet?  Can they learn different shapes or colors?  Do they learn how to solve problems?  You can also get toys that teach skills like cooking or building.  A simple ball can teach them plenty of things so toys don’t really have to be complicated.  Toys with no educational value are still fun but that should not be the only toy your child has.  Here are some toys that teach.

The lifespan of the toy

The best toys you can buy your children are the ones that last.  These are the toys that all of your children play with and then end up being donated somewhere for other kids to play with.  High quality toys that don’t break easily are ideal.  Think about Lego, it is almost the perfect toy, it works for both boys and girls, stimulates the imagination and it will last forever.

Toys that Can Inspire the Imagination

Toys that Can Inspire the Imagination

As parents we don’t spend a lot of time thinking about how the toys we buy our children toys that can inspire their imaginations.  If you take a closer look at what they do at playtime we would see just how the toys stimulate their imagination and help them to develop.  Play time isn’t just fun and games, it allows them to experiment with what they know about the real world.

Play time allows them to develop social skills, improve their language skills, inspires creativity and self-discipline.  As parents we mainly concern ourselves with whether or not our children are having fun and actually playing with the toys we get them.  If we want to stimulate their imaginations and encourage development here are some toys that we should consider.

  1. Dolls and dollhouses. The dollhouses on the market today are incredibly realistic and children can imitate real life using the dolls and the dollhouse.  This type of play can be incredibly realistic and your children can become very attached to their dolls.  It teaches them caring and empathy.
  2. Puppets and puppet shows. Puppets have been used since the dawn of time for acting and role playing.  Psychologists use them for kids to explain trauma in a safe environment.  Try and get puppets that aren’t based on characters your children already know, it gives them a blank slate and they can use their imagination to create characters.
  3. Play kitchens. This gives your child the chance to learn about the jobs and things that mom and dad do around the house.  They can pretend to cook, vacuum or fix things with play tool sets.
  4. Planes, trains and automobiles. These allow kids to use their imaginations to travel and see the world.  If they want to go to grandma’s house they can hop in the car or on the plane.  They can pretend to be pilots or astronauts and have some adventure filled trips.
  5. Costumes. Costumes are among some of the best toys ever to encourage role playing.  Not only that they are cheap and easy to make and that is another way you can help kids use their imaginations.  With a costume they can become absolutely anything, cowboys, princesses, or their favorite character from a book they love.

Another way to spark your child’s imagination is through books.  Books take you on a journey to different places and lets you interact into different worlds.  Reading with your child is one of the best things you can do for their development.