Fall is my favorite time of the year. While we haven’t ushered in the cooler temperatures in Southern California yet (it was 90+ this weekend), there is something about this time of the year that makes it incredibly popular with almost everyone. I decided to change things up a bit today and share fun, low-cost activities you can do with your family to celebrate Fall.
October is often times our last chance to relax before ramping up for the busy holiday season. Take advantage of the lull with these family-friendly activities.
Store-bought costumes have vastly improved since I was a child, but if you have the skill and time, it can be a lot of fun to make your own and coordinate your costumes so you have a family theme. Not all costumes require sewing either, just a little ingenuity. Parenting has some great homemade Halloween costume ideas if you need inspiration.
Have a family movie night and watch your favorite spooky movie. Ideally one that won’t give your kids nightmares! Make it an event by creating a spooky meal with dishes like Halloween Quesadillas or Mummies in a Blanket or enjoy a scary treat, such as Rice Krispie Ghosts, after the movie.
Invite your kids into the kitchen to bake some of your family’s favorite Fall treats. They will not only learn essential skills, but also have a great time. Sometimes having Lauren and Taylor in the kitchen with me means things get a little messier, but the memories we make together are priceless. So get out your pots and pans and whip up your favorite pumpkin or apple treat together. Tanya from Eat Laugh Purr has a delicious looking apple crisp with salted caramel sauce and apple cider caramels on her blog and Kayla from Shoeaholic No More shared a Paleo friendly Pumpkin Spice Latte on her blog. Now you can enjoy a seasonal favorite year-round with a tasty homemade version.
Bonus Tip: Make extra and share with family, neighbors and friends.
We all move so fast these days that it can be hard to remember all of our special moments. This is one way to capture those moments. Take a current photo of your family (it doesn’t need to be professional but make sure the whole family is in the picture) and have everyone write down a few memories and accomplishments from the past year. Put the picture and memories in an envelope with the year written on it and store in a keepsake box. Repeat this every Fall. This will be something you will treasure for years to come as you look back at the photos and hand-written memories.
If you’re a family of football fanatics then attend a pro, college or high school game or whatever your budget permits. You can also forgo attending a game live and tailgate in your driveway. Better yet, gather your football buddies and rotate tailgating at each other’s homes. Keep it budget friendly with everyone bringing a snack to share. Dollar stores also have a great selection of solid color plates, napkins, cups and plastic silverware, so you can affordably decorate in your team colors.
With winter fast approaching, be sure to get outside and enjoy the mild Fall temperatures and colors while you can. Go for a bike ride or a hike and explore local parks and neighborhoods together. Pack a picnic and turn it into a full day.
Carving pumpkins is messy, messy work, but it’s also great fun. Invite friends over to carve and/or decorate pumpkins for the afternoon. Have everyone bring their own pumpkin and knife while you supply some light snacks. Hold a contest to see who has the scariest pumpkin.
Kids often enjoy working on craft projects together. I’ve assembled a couple easy and fun options. Where Your Treasure Is shares how to make DIY Cinnamon Pinecones. Super easy and I bet they smell heavenly. Spark and Chemistry walks us through how to make Autumn Mason Jar Candle Holders. These look gorgeous. Both of these would also make great gifts too, maybe as a party favor for guests at your Thanksgiving feast.
When you on your hike or bike ride with your children, collect small, broken branches for your gratitude tree. Place a few branch (stripped of leaves) in a vase or jar (use decorative or real rocks to hold the branches in place) and have everyone write what they a grateful for this Fall on colorful paper cut into the shape of leaves. Punch a hole in each gratitude note and use string or yarn to tie it to a branch. This makes a great Thanksgiving centerpiece too. You can invite your guest to add their own gratitude leaf to the tree too.
With the holidays fast approaching, many food banks are in need of food and cash donations. Organize a food drive at your Church or place of worship, your school or just among your neighbors and friends. Have your kids help make and hang signs or go door-to-door to collect food donations. Remind them how blessed you are to have plenty of food and that not every family is fortunate. This is an easy way for us to give thanks and help others.
What activities are you looking forward to doing this Fall?
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