Join us as we try to create 30 days of fun memories with our kids outside EVERYDAY starting April 1st.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

April 29th-April 30th-Backyard Camp-out

I wanted to do something special with the kids to celebrate our month outside.  We were lucky enough to make it outside every day this month, without fail, rain or shine, sickness and in health.   So we decided to surprise the kids with a backyard camp-out and spend the last of April outdoors.   I love backyard camping!  The house is there for those of us who would like to use the restroom indoors, the kitchen is accessible for late night treats, and if we forgot anything (like a very special bedtime lovey), we can hop right back in the house and get it!  Don't get me wrong, our family also loves real camping, but backyard camping is its own kind of fun.

 Here is our tent all set up and waiting for us.

  We grilled outside for dinner.  Then Daddy blew bubbles with the kids while I got things cleaned up.

We  played a comical family game of kickball.    Comical because the children couldn't remember having ever played before and kept mixing up the rules with soccer.  Andrew didn't want to touch the ball with his hands.  Ryan wanted to keep kicking the ball after the initial kick.  Molly wanted to pick up the bases.  As you can see, eventually we got the hang of it.  Kind of.

After the difficulty with kickball, we decided to stay with a game we all knew the rules to.  Hide and seek!

We moved next to jumping on the trampoline.  Then we laid down on the trampoline and watched the sunset together, listening to the sounds of the crickets, birds, and neighborhood dogs.

 Of course we made S'mores once it got dark.  How can you have a camp out without them? 

We put on our jammies and read stories and sang songs together until the boys fell asleep.

I'd like to say that Molly fell asleep soon after, but that would not be truthful.  Our neighbors were having a party and played loud heavy metal music until after 11pm.  Molly danced and sang along with the music. 

In the morning, the kids crawled in our sleeping bags for snuggles, before we had hot cocoa and breakfast. We laid there and listened to the animals outside.  Andrew was very excited because we heard an owl.  

Later the kids helped take down the tent, and were happy and helpful, despite the fact that they wanted to sleep outside FOREVER!

We had a wonderful time together, last night, today, and EVERY DAY this month. 

I knew this month would be challenging.  April is such a busy month for our family.   I was afraid that with all we had going on, I would be tempted to justify turning on the tv instead of going outside to play on exceptionally busy days. 

Thank you for joining me in this journey, for taking this challenge with our family. I appreciate your support and enthusiasm.  I hope that you have been able to spend more time outside than you usually do, even if you were not able to make it out everyday.  I hope that you have been able to get some fun ideas from others who have posted.  I hope you have been blessed to create happy memories with your loved ones outside.  

***If you have participated in the challenge, please comment and let me know how you did.  It is okay if you did not make it every day.  I know sometimes weather or illness make it impossible to get outside.  I just want to hear from you if you tried and want to know what the experience has meant to you and your family.  All those who comment will be entered into a drawing for the $30 amazon card.  I will draw on Monday.   (If you signed up at the very beginning and shared it on your facebook pages and blogs, you will also receive entries for those)!

***There is now a linky up for anyone who would like to share any outside fun they have had this month!  All those who link up will be eligible for another entry.


  1. We didn't get out every day, but we had fun on the days that we did!! We did pretty good - can't wait to link up tomorrow. I've enjoyed the challenge......thanks so much for hosting!

  2. We made it outside everyday for the first 14 days of April. Our main reason for not making it outside after that was mainly due to rain and storms. We still got out but not as often. This was a great challenge and we had a lot of fun participating! : )

  3. Thanks so much for this wonderful challenge! We got outside every single day and have had so many great adventures! I'm {almost} ready to cut off the satellite!

  4. We didn't make it out every day, but we did get out more often than a typical Idaho April and we even went out on some really yucky days even if it was in 3 ten minute spurts! I hope to do even better next month and to make more fun memories with my children.

  5. Like Katie, the weather during the first half of the month was definitely easier to get outside in. During the last half we had rain, wind, and some storms. We did get out on some days we wouldn't normally have gone out. Sometimes even in halfway decent weather we don't get out as much as we should. This challenge put me in the mindset of trying to get out everyday and we came close. We missed two days due to storms or cold rain. Thank you for hosting this challenge.

  6. We did enjoy the challenge! Not so much to just "get outside" as my daughter does that by her nature, but just to actually make it a conscious thought for myself and older sons, also. And, to a bit more directive, not only "float" time, but also, improving our living time, too. THANKS for the encouragement :)

  7. We participated!! It was AWESOME! We loved playing outside as much as possible!! It makes me feel like such a better mom when my kids have played outside for as long as possible during the day. I love it, and so do they!

  8. One of my best childhood memory was going camping at the beach or in the nearby mountain.