Atlanta mom Amy Goodwin took the family to a music and arts festival. The free annual neighborhood festivals in her area have music, food, beer and and an art market for the adults, plus dancing, popsicles, face painting and bounce houses for the little ones. "There are always swarms of kids at these things, which is what I think kids like best about it. And parents can take turns watching the swarms of kids so we're not stuck 'on duty' the entire time," Goodwin said.
You may not be familiar with letterboxing, but according to Seattle mom Dana Verhoff, letterboxing is "part treasure hunt, part stamp collecting and a whole lot of fun!" Verhoff says the activity, which involves following clues to find hidden stamp books, is an excuse to take a walk... with a big ol' twist of adventure. "Works great to keep kids motivated on a longer hike, too!" Verhoff said.
"Last Saturday, we all went to the zoo," said Chiara Rusev, mother of eight kids ages 2 to 16. With such a big crew, Rusev says the zoo is the perfect spot for a family outing. "There is something to do for every age group and lots of room to spread out!"
Sundee Easter says she, her husband and 12-year-old son Ryan attended an outdoor yoga class. (Tip: Check local listings for free outdoor yoga classes in your area.)
Danielle Jackson and her husband took their 4- and 6-year-old boys for a "light" hike. For moms thinking of taking little ones out on the trail, Jackson says it's helpful to remember that it's "about the journey, not the destination." Her family likes to stop a lot to look at the trees, rocks, sticks, lizards and flowers. She says flat trails work best, and so do lots of snack breaks. "The goal of the parent shouldn't be exercise. It's more about an active outdoor activity in nature," Jackson said.
Ashley Torresala and her husband took their daughter to pick blueberries at a local farm. (Want to find a place to pick fruit in your area? Check out the searchable list of "U-pick" locations at PickYourOwn.org.)
Erin Clendenin and her husband took their two boys camping with friends. S'mores were part of the experience, of course.
Kristin Kennedy says her latest family activity involved a trip to see Dad at the office. Her husband's company organized a Bring Your Family to Work Day — "a fun variation on Bring Your Child to Work Day," Kennedy said.
Jennifer Wilson says she and her kids played a few hot games of Uno while it rained outside.
Carole Yates took the family for a hike and a picnic in the beautiful redwoods of Northern California.
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