Outdoor Toys to Get Your Kids Outside to Play

6:43 PM

 Outdoor Toys to Get Your Kids Outside to Play


Rounding up some great outdoor toys for kids to get them outside & playing! These are all highly recommended by me or other Moms & Dads! For whatever reason, it is getting harder to get kids outside & playing. Competing with screens to the great outdoors I've heard from other parents what a battle it can be!

But getting them outside it such a big big deal. For the development & for us parents sanity during the summer {& otherwise} LOL. I am a big believer that we don't even need toys for kids to be entertained. It amazing to me what my girls come up with, without a single thing to play with. BUT having tools to encourage play is sometimes the push to get them to get out there & have fun! 

These toys are some that have my kids begging to get outside to play & for me to play with them, too! It's hard to get my kids to come inside somedays. Our joke is a barefoot check at the end of the day, if their feet aren't dirty enough. You get sent back to because you didn't have enough fun! 

I hope you get some ideas from these toys, so you can get there, too! You may find some of these you played as a kid, too & will find yourself being able to play with your kids outside as well!




1. Velcro Mitt Ball

2. Zip-Ball
This is was my favorite as a kid! My girls could play this seriously, forever. Sometimes I have to sit on a chair on the front porch because we have been playing so long! 

3. Po-Go Stick
This isn't your ordinary po-go stick. Although, that would work too. This stick Kensley got for her birthday last year, it is interactive. It counts how many jumps you do & girls could go forever trying to beat each other's score! Great workout too, they always get off all sweaty!

4. Horse Shoe
Did anyone else's parents use to play this all the time? We even had pits at our house! This is the same concept but with plastic shoes instead of real! Fun one for the whole family.

5. Cup Stilts
This one may sound silly, but this brings just normal walking around the driveway or street even more fun! My girls love doing this! Who knew!

6. Sandbox Excavator
I mean, how cool is this to have in your own backyard?! Making your sandbox next level fun!

7. Bug Catcher Kit
Bug catching is a professional sport over here. WELL, as long as it isn't too yucky. These keep my dishes from getting filled with worms, rolly-pollies & fireflies!

8. Swurfer
Swurfer sent us this & it has been non-stop fun! This is so great for the kid that is maybe feeling a little bit too older for swinging or who loves a thrill! Super easy install! The only con is the kids argue who gets to be on it first! 

9. Wiffle Ball Scoop
Another childhood favorite for me! We could play this for hours!

10. Stepping Stones
The girls bring these outside all the time to play the floor is lava or set up obstacle courses! Endless possibilities for these!

11. Walkie-Talkies
Talk about endless play THESE. Get a set of walkie talkies. HOURS & so so many batteries of fun.

12. Clip-on Roller Skates
These make any shoe into a sort of heelies. So much fun & they light up! My girls had a learning curve to figuring them out. But once they did, hours of fun!

13. Night Hawk
If you follow me on Instagram, you have seen this on stories. Kensley got one for her birthday & that same day, one was ordered for Kennedy. They use every single day unless they aren't plugged in! It kinda like a hoover board meets skateboard meets I am not sure, but they are so cool & we can't keep the girls off of them!

14.Two Bros Bows
These are fun & safe take on archery! Comes with a target you can put on just about anything!

15. Monkey Jump
This seems like the new it toy! Everyone is raving about it & it seems like such a great alternative to a trampoline which we won't own at our house! 

16. Climbing Net
This Is so cool! Hook it up to two trees or a swing set for tons of fun climbing right in your backyard!
Make a fun obstacle course & include this!

Parent Trap Movie Night | Parent Trap Party

3:57 PM

 Parent Trap Movie Night | Parent Trap Party


I don't mean to be dramatic but The Parent Trap was my favorite movie ever growing up. I died a little every year I came back from church camp without a newfound twin sister. I introduced the girls to The Parent Trap several years ago, the classic first of course. Then the Nancy Meyers version of the Parent Trap & they loved it just as much as me. It kinda became our summer movie. We watch it a million times, & now reserve only for summer. We kick off the end of the school year, on the last day of school by watching The Parent Trap that night.

Since this school year was a little rough {thanks 2020} I decided to spice up our movie night at little & theme together a Parent Trap Movie Night to surprise them!

Parent Trap Movie Night | Parent Trap Party



First, I made "Camp Walden" shirts. I couldn't find green ringer tees for kids that would come in time so I got these men's tees. I got smalls & they ended up being perfect for oversized nightgowns to be comfy for a movie night. I am only kicking myself for not making one for myself.

I printed the Camp Walden logo onto iron-on transfer paper & ironed them onto the shirts. Easy.

Parent Trap Movie Night | Parent Trap Party


Next, I headed to the store for supplies, one can not watch The Parent Trap without the infamous Oreos & Peanut Butter. So I grabbed those. I went on a bit of a wild goose chase for some Evian Bottles like in the movie. Apparently, people really like Evian because I could not find the suckers anywhere! I found some at CVS of all places. Why Evian? To glue on lizards of course. One can not forget one of the most climate Parent Trap scenes of all time.

I tried nail glue & super glue. & neither worked. I assume because the bottles were wet & sweating. So I ended up using little velcro dots I had laying around at home. Worked perfectly. I ordered the lizards HERE because I was afraid I wouldn't be able to find any locally.

Parent Trap Movie Night | Parent Trap Party

Parent Trap Movie Night | Parent Trap Party


Finally, I printed an Isolation Table paper & stuck it in a white frame. It looked also identical to the frame they sat at while scheming their plan at camp. & then I printed the mom & dad wedding photos & perrrrfectly ripped as much as I could to replicate the rip from the movie.
Parent Trap Movie Night | Parent Trap Party


Can you even? This was so super easy to throw together & had the biggest punch of the girls. They were so so thrilled & it made the perfect kick-off to the summer. 

Parent Trap Movie Night | Parent Trap Party


After this I’m shipping them to boarding school in Timbuktu 🤪🤪🤪 ##parenttrap ##disney ##movienight ##summer ##FriendsReunion

Hocking Hills Sauna Pods

4:28 PM

 Hocking Hills Sauna Pods

hocking hills sauna pods


Our trip to Hocking Hills was long-awaited. I ended up stumbling across a photo of a Sauna Pod & looked to find that it was in Hocking Hills. I booked it on a whim that maybe we would want to use it after hiking that morning of Mother's Day. I am so glad I did because it ended up being a cold & wet day! This was truly incredible & so so relaxing. I really want to come back & try during the winter! Can you imagine with snow on the ground?!

The Sauna Pods are located at the Hocking Hills Chalets.

Address for GPS: 18905 Ohio 664 Scenic
Logan, Ohio


hocking hills sauna pods


Reserving one is super easy on their Hocking Hills Sauna Pods website & you are able to reserve for a minimum of an hour. 

Rates for Hocking Hills Sauna Pods: {subject to change}


1 hour
Weekday  $70
Weekend  $80

2 hour
Weekday $110
Weekend $125

Full Day
Weekday $250
Weekend $300

hocking hills sauna pods

hocking hills sauna pods

hocking hills sauna pods


Things to Know:


You check-in at the office & head up to whatever sauna pod number they give you. There are two.

They are tucked perfectly in the forest on the hilltop!
Hocking Hills Sauna Pods provide you with  2 water bottles & have the option of buying a robe. { I brought my own}

hocking hills sauna pods

hocking hills sauna pods




The pod has a Bluetooth & AUX cord hook up to listening to music as loud as your heart desires. It is so neat!

On one side of the benches, you can fold the bench up in two places for it to become a lounger. It is SO comfortable!

hocking hills sauna pods


How big is the pod?

It sits 4 people comfortably. It just over 6 ft tall and from the front door to window it's 7 ft.

How hot does the pod get?

It has where you can adjust but they say the ideal temperature is 120-150 degrees. 

How long should I be in the pod during my reservation?

Max you want to stay in is 15 mins with at least 10 min breaks between going back in. You do NOT stay in for your whole reservation. 

hocking hills sauna pods


Can you bring kids?

Yes. The biggest thing is to make sure you take breaks & stay hydrated.We brought Bo who was 5 months at the time but we never brought him into the actual sauna. There is a small dressing room outside of the sauna in the pod where we took turns with him while we were taking a break. My girls were 9 and 10 at the time of our visit & they loved it. 

hocking hills sauna pods


What risks are there?

Mostly dehydration. Make sure you stay hydrated & do not stay in for long periods of time.



hocking hills sauna pods

hocking hills sauna pods



@mrsmumaw

SAUNA PODS 🤯 Hocking Hills Ohio ##travel ##hockinghills ##familytravel ##waterfalls ##midwest

♬ SUNNY DAY - Matteo Rossanese

Hocking Hills with Kids + a Baby | Hocking Hills Family Trip

1:43 PM

 Hocking Hills with Kids + a Baby | Hocking Hills Family Trip

Taken at Conkles Hollow


Hocking Hills is a perfect family trip & great for beginner hikers in the family. This trip has been in the making for quite some time! We have had it on our list for years & we finally planned it for Spring of 2020. Well, as I am sure you could have guessed as soon as I said 2020, that trip got canceled. We were at home & the state parks were shut down. So we replanned it for 2021! We went the weekend of Mother's Day & it was the most perfect weekend I could have asked for. If you are anywhere near Hocking Hills State Park in Logan, Ohio I highly, highly recommend going! 

Don't be worried about the hiking with your kiddos at Hocking Hills. Hocking Hills is extremely kid & family-friendly! All of the trails are extremely well-maintained some are even wheelchair accessible & stroller friendly because they are paved. There are, in some trails, lots of stairs. But even the trails at Hocking Hills marked as moderate were not hard at all. That is coming from a very, very out of shape person :P

For reference by girls were ages 9 & 10 and my son was 5 months at the time of this trip.

Every trail we went on we kept saying how we didn't feel like we were even in the United States let alone Ohio. It felt like we were in the jungle in Costa Rica or something. 

We didn't get to go to every trail, but we can't wait to come back & finish our list. All of the trails I mention below include a waterfall(s) & are easily done by children 6+ {I am being really generous with my age suggestion, but you know your child best. If you hike frequently & your kiddo is good with walking longer distances give it a shot} I will include how long each trail is ect.



Cost:

Ohio State Parks are free! So there is no admission to the Hocking Hills State Park!

What to Bring:
{this will vary the time of year you go}

- Hiking Shoes {this doesn't have to be a specific hiking shoe. But you want something comfortable & waterproof} We always use Keens to hike.
- Light-weight Raincoats {just in case}
- Water
- Backpack 
- First Aid
- Phone with downloaded trail maps {make sure you download them as there is little to no service in the parks & trails are poorly marked}
- Or Paper Map {stop by the welcome center to grab one}
- Hats {if going during spring or summer to help with ticks}

Apps to download Before you come:

- Hocking Hills App 
- All Trains App


Where We Stayed:

Because our dates were sort of last-minute we had slim pickings for reservations. Things book up like crazy in advance so make sure you plan with that in mind. We were able to find a place called Hocking Hills Adventures. They are primarily a canoe rental place but they also have camping & cabins. The cabins are "primitive". The grounds leave a lot to be desired but we didn't care. Our cabin was nestled back into the woods off a huge cliff & it was perfect. Primitive means no bedding or bathrooms. Though there is a bathhouse close by. There was, however, a small fridge & microwave. Our site had a campfire ring & front porch. 



First Stop

Make sure you stop by the welcome center! They are extremely kind here & have so so much information. They clearly love their job & want you to have the best trip possible. They scavenger hunts for kids. Rainy day activities. Lists of local restaurants. Just so so much info. AND you have to stop at Pencil Sharpener Museum right next door. This was such a fun stop!





Conkles Hollow - Super Easy - 0.5 mile

Conkles Hollow is a State Nature Preserve. Here we took the gorge trail. It is a one way in & out trail. The trail is mostly paved up until the actual hollow. It's very easy & kid friendly. Ends in a beautiful hollow with small waterfall. Lots of neat stops to check things out. 






Ash Cave - Super Easy - 0.3 mile

This was for sure the easiest hike we had at Hocking Hills. Again we took the gorge trail here, which s also paved. It is in & out for wheelchair accessible but you can continue past the gorge up onto the rim to come back down for a bit more of a challenge. This trail really gives a huge wow factor when you come upon the gorge. Truly breathtaking. It full of sand & a small waterfall that lands in toward the end of the cave. We found a tiny baby mouse drinking from the water landing while there. The girls spent forever exploring in this gorge. 

 Pro Tip: If you have kiddos that love sandbox. Pack from some trucks or shovels for some extra fun.







Cedar Falls - Lightly Moderate - 0.9 mile

Cedar Falls is one of the bigger waterfalls that we saw at Hocking Hills. It was the most busy as well {althought that is rare, generally Ash Cave is the most popular} This trail has quite a bit of stairs which is why I put lightly moderate. Depending on which parking lot you parked it, it can be a harder trail to get back. With little ones this could be labeled as easy by turning around and going back the way you came instead. 





Old Man's Cave - Lightly Moderate - 5.3 miles

Old Man's Cave packs in all the punches on this trail. The first stop at the waterfall, I found myself feeling like I was in a screensaver. It is so picturesque. This trail is one-way traffic, it can be tricky to figure out where to start, but look for the big "bigfoot" prints on the pavement & they lead you to the start! On this trail, you get to see the famous attraction "The Devils Bathtub" & the Upper falls.



The Devils Bathtub









How long should my trip be?

This is going to vary for every person. We were there for 3 days. The first being arrival day, we did no hiking. The second, it was dreadfully storming & we did the Hocking Hills Sauna Pods {you can see that all about that HERE}, welcome center & Conkles Hollow then following by the third day getting up early to do the rest.
I think 3 days at Hocking Hills is perfect that you won't feel rushed. There is so much more we didn't do because of the rain than we would have liked to. 



0-6 Montessori Toys | Lovevery Dupe Toys

12:42 PM

 0-6 Montessori Toys  | Lovevery Dupe Toys



0-6 Montessori Toys  | Lovevery Dupe Toys
0-6 Montessori Toys  | Lovevery Dupe Toys


I absolutely love Montessori toys for children. If you have been here for a while you will know that when my older girls were younger I did a lot of Montessori-like school at home with them. When I saw the subscription of Lovevery I thought it was absolutely brilliant. But I kept seeing how many people couldn't afford the subscription and were super bummed because they wanted to toys. Or maybe they didn't want to pay the price because they only wanted one or two out of the Lovevery boxes. I really love these types of toys and wanted to put together a list alike toys that are accessible to everyone!

 This post contains affiliate links. Which means I make a very small commission on any products you buy through my links, at no                                                                           additional cost to you. Thank You so much for supporting my family.
                                                                         View my full disclosure policy for more information.


0-6 Montessori Toys  | Lovevery Dupe Toys




0-6 Montessori Toys  | Lovevery Dupe Toys




0-6 Montessori Toys  | Lovevery Dupe Toys

0-6 Montessori Toys  | Lovevery Dupe Toys


0-6 Montessori Toys  | Lovevery Dupe Toys



0-6 Montessori Toys  | Lovevery Dupe Toys



0-6 Montessori Toys  | Lovevery Dupe Toys




0-6 Montessori Toys  | Lovevery Dupe Toys


About Me

Welcome Friends!
I am Tara. I am a wanna be southern momma, stuck in the Midwest. Huge Disney lover. I love a huge bow & all things Farmhouse style. Frequent user of "Ya'll" Here you will find about our travels, all things motherhood & parenting, with everything I love in between! Grab a cup off coffee & stay awhile!

IG @MRSMUMAW