December 7, 2022

As temperatures start to fall, folks in other parts of the country may be looking forward to snowball fights and sledding, but in our region… not so much.  What can we do to get the kids out of the house and burning off energy?  Here are a few ideas for outdoor family fun this winter.


The great thing about bird feeders is you can make them outside, hang them, and then enjoy hours of free outdoor entertainment.  Your family can make bird feeders out of virtually anything concave, so try to think outside the box.  Once you’ve mixed birdseed and dried fruit with suet, regular or vegan gelatin, or peanut butter, you can fill hollowed-out halves of apples, oranges, and other fruits, apply a thick coat to pinecones, or use cookie cutters to create fun shapes.  Your local birds (and squirrels) will thank you!  Add educational value by picking up a guide to local birds and competing to identify your visitors.


Seasonal sports like football, soccer, and hockey will get your blood pumping enough to stay warm.  Taking familiar board games outside can give kids new perspectives on them.  Spend an hour or so painting random objects red and black, draw a board on your driveway with chalk, and you can play checkers like never before.  Giant versions of games like Connect Four and Jenga have been designed for outdoor use, and the number of options grows every year.


A winter hike is a great way to get kids to engage with nature.  Consider incorporating a scavenger hunt.  Make a list that combines trees, rocks, and larger landmarks (that can be photographed if young hands are steady enough) with smaller items that can be collected without harming anything.  Pack some food and turn a rest break into a picnic.

These items can form the basis of another project: a nature journal that combines twigs, leaves, seed pods, and so on with photos, drawings, and written notes about the locations they visited.

Pinecones, seeds, fallen leaves, twigs, and pebbles can be turned into decorative collages to hang from trees, mailboxes, outdoor furniture, porch railings, or the exterior of your house.


You may have considered an outdoor living space on a patio or deck, where you can wind down from activities or just hang out when you feel like it.  Your first acquisition should be a heat source, either portable (heating lamps, chiminea, fire pit) or stationary (outdoor fireplace).  If you choose furniture, consider adding all-weather rugs, blankets, and pillows for extra comfort.  Depending on the amount of time you plan to spend there, you might add a roof, curtains or screens to block wind, and lighting.

And you can still venture out into your yard, put up a tent, and have a spontaneous camping adventure any time you want.

These are just a few ways to enjoy winter outdoors with your family before it’s time to get back to yard work in the spring.  If you have questions about using your lawn for winter activities while protecting its long-term health, or about any other aspect of lawn care, the professionals at Southern Lawns can help.  Contact us today at 334.466.0600 or sales@southernlawns.net.