Even though everyone is talking about heading back to school and cool fall weather, it's still blazing hot in many places around the country. Whether you have a swimming pool or not, your kids can keep cool with these cool water toys and games.
For big pools, we love all the options you can find at ToySplash.com. From simple rafts and water noodles to fun ride-on pool toys, they have something for every family. Our kids love the Labyrinth Inflatable Pool Island (ToySplash, $49). It's huge — 8 feet across — with nine cutouts so all their friends can play at once.
For small pools (or even the bathtub), check out the Disney Princess Ariel’s Floating Fountain Playset (Mattel, $17) or Cars World Grand Prix Splash Speedway Track Set (Mattel, $13). No pool at all? No problem. Break out the hose and the balloons, and cool off with a game of water balloon dodgeball.
If your kids are like mine, they love dressing up. Throw a costume party to send off the summer in style. Consider it a precursor to your Halloween celebration coming up in a few months. For your little princesses, these Disney Princess bling dresses (Jakks, $20) are just perfect with all their iconic design details and sparkling glitter accents.
The hottest toys and costumes for kids these days seem to be all about princesses and superheroes, but don't limit yourself to just these themes. Let them dress up as their favorite characters from movies, TV shows and books.
Whether you are roughing it in the woods, spending the weekend at a resort cabin or popping up a tent in your own backyard, camping is fun for kids of all ages. Grab some kid-friendly gear like these adorable sleeping bags (Creative Kidstuff, $80 to 85). These soft and cozy sleeping bags are perfect for family camping trips, as well as weekends at grandma's house. These feature plush, removable toys and come in fun animal themes, from dinosaurs to golden retrievers.
An end-of-the-summer celebration doesn't have to take a lot of effort. Just get outside with your kids. From badminton to bocce ball, you can introduce your kids to some good old-fashioned backyard games. Play a game of horseshoes with the St. Pierre Sports horseshoe game set (Wayfair, $47) or a retro game of croquet with the Trademark Global complete combo croquet set (Wayfair, $53).
We also like the Sky Bouncer (Maui Toys, $10) — a new take on the traditional flying disc. This revolutionary toy flies and bounces for an added twist. Kids love the Lighting Bolt Pro pitching machine (SKLZ.com, $60) because they can all hit and field, but no one has to pitch. The balls are smaller and softer than traditional baseballs, making it more challenging and more fun.
Of course you can also just bike around the neighborhood or take your kids' scooters, wagons, Big Wheels and other ride-on toys to the park for an afternoon of fun. If you are looking for something new, check out the Ziggle (Radio Flyer, $50). This cool toy delivers a fast, fun ride with twisting motion and 360-degree spin out action.
Whatever way you choose to celebrate the end of summer with your kids, really enjoy it! The summer weather will be gone before you know it!
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