Creating Your Family-Friendly Backyard Oasis This Summer
Finding Ways to Make the Most of the Summer Even If You’re Staying at Home
Many families travel during the summer months, but many are just as likely to stay close to home! These fun kid-friendly ideas will help you jazz up the backyard in no time all within a budget of your choice before the long-awaited Canadian summer arrives.
What are your goals for a family fun time this summer?
Here are some family-friendly backyard ideas that can help turn your outdoor space into more than it has ever been or work with what you already have and make the most of those hot summer days as they fly by.
Design and build what works best for your space and the kids and ensure that you don’t miss a day of the sun this summer. From taking in the fresh air to giving the kids space to run around, to sharing your grilling masterpieces and more, hopefully, these will inspire you to create tons of summer fun right in your own home and keep the kids busy!
1. Plan and Designate
To make the family backyard feel like a destination and less like just being at home, designate specific areas as “activity zones.” For starters, if you have patio furniture and a BBQ, create a place for them that makes the most sense. Build from there and designate specific play areas or water areas. You’ll also want to consider shady spots and if there is an option to create more covered areas with oversized umbrellas or canopies to allow the family to stay outside even when the sun may be a little hotter then you’d like.
Now that you have your plans mapped out, it’s time to get creative!
2. Design the Perfect Backyard Kids Zone
Create an area just for the kiddos. With tons of lounging space dedicated to the adults, this gives the little ones a space of their very own. Consider outdoor rugs, kid’s tents, standing chalkboards and even games like corn hole or giant Jenga. Make it even more fun for them by creating a special seating or eating area with child-sized lawn chairs or tables or set up a little plastic picnic table if you have toddlers. Go as big or little as you like depending on what works best for your family.
When forming your play area, take some time to consider what may give you some longevity versus a few days of ‘wow’. Weather is also an important consideration if you want to spend as much time outdoors as you can this summer. Think about things like a water table to keep the little ones cool, or a playhouse for days that are a bit too cold to get wet. A swing set is sure to keep younger kids entertained all summer long and even into the fall.
3. Mood Lighting and Backyard Decor
Make the backyard feel magical when the sun goes down with some porch lights, string lights across the fences and around the trees, and maybe even a citronella candle or two. Order in some outdoor beanbag chairs and bring them out as the evening sets in. It’s a great way for the kids to unwind while you grill up dinner on the BBQ served up in Wonder® hotdog or hamburger buns.
Check out these delicious grilling recipes.
4. Warm Things Up
Another cozy and fun element for your backyard oasis is a fire pit. Choose from built-in or moveable ones, which are readily available at most garden centres or big box stores. No matter which you choose, this is an ideal spot for the family to gather around for a summer evening campfire and toasted marshmallows. With the right setup, your backyard can soon start to feel like being away at the cottage.
5. Water Fun All Day Long!
Adding a water feature is a great inclusion to your backyard oasis this summer. If you’re really invested in building out your backyard this year, then a pool is likely at the top of the list! But if home improvements aren't in the plan, there are tons of other amazing options available for some water fun. Depending on how old the kids are, a kid’s pool can provide just the right relief on a hot day and a fun activity. Other options include sprinklers, slip and slides, water tables, splash pads, water guns and good ol’ fashioned water balloons.
When planning water activities for kids there are also a few other factors to think about. Choose an area that offers some privacy, if possible, somewhere that gives the family easy access to the house and lastly, a spot that can also lend itself to shade during certain times of the day.