After that first week or two of summer vacation, the excitement wears off and boredom sets in. Never fear: we've got you covered with fun ideas and summer projects to keep everyone busy.
1. Milk bottle bird feeders
Give your kids a lesson in recycling and nature when you turn your trash into a way to provide for your backyard birds. Grab a pair of binoculars and sit back with the kids while you try to catch the birds mid-meal, then use a book or the internet to try to identify what kind of feathered friends you've got. The fun with this project continues all summer long when you enlist the kiddos to make sure it stays filled with seed. Find this and other recycled crafts here.
2. Indoor terrarium
Just because it's summer doesn't mean all the planting has to be done outside. Take advantage of the greenery sales this time of year and put together an indoor terrarium that will last all year long. Let your kids pick out the plants and the decor, but have fun getting your hands dirty together. See ours, and the directions, here.
3. Local park treasure hunt
Gather the kiddos and head to the park for a treasure hunt. If you have older kids, you can just hand them a list of items to find, but for littles, you'll need to print out pictures to make identifying easier. Put together a list that doubles as a treasure chest, like we did here, then work as a team to find all the items.
4. Re-grow your veggies
Teach your kids a little botany while you bulk up your garden by re-growing your kitchen scraps into more edible veggies. We did it here with a potato, but you can also use scallions, celery, onions, garlic, ginger, romaine lettuce, cabbage, leeks and fennel. Once your new plants have established roots, move them out to your summer garden and they'll be ready to eat (again) in no time.