Tag: summer activities

The Taga family bike is back, and more affordable. Well…relatively.

Back in 2014, Kate spent some time with the original Taga Bike with some pretty stellar results, and I’m not the least bit surprised she fell for this cool family bike. It’s brilliantly designed, can ferry up to two kids in the front compartment where parents can see them, and to top it off, it flips into a stroller in a mere 20 seconds. In fact, the only major criticism from our readers was the bike’s steep price — about $1,500 for the basic model. Eek! Related: The coolest bike helmets for kids. As in, ones they’ll actually want to wear. With that in mind, the creators have just rolled...

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Frogglez are the kids’ swim goggles you’ve been looking for forever

Leave it to my own cool mom to provide us with a most excellent Cool Grandmom Pick as we make the most of the final sweltering weeks of summer — Frogglez Goggles. My kids refuse to go in the pool without goggles, and these are the first ones I’ve ever tried that they can wear literally for hours without complaining about them. That double neoprene band may make them look a bit like orthodontic headgear (with due respect to Joan Cusack in Sixteen Candles) but they’re comfy, they stay on, and they don’t even get caught up in my girls’ long hair. You...

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19 random acts of kindness you can have fun doing with your kids

There have been a lot of hard things in the news this year, and I think we can all agree we need a little more happy in our lives. So when a friend told me that her kids found $5 and a note to buy some candy “on us” tucked into her movie rental (yes, some people still rent DVDs!), I got inspired. What simple, random acts of kindness could I do with my kids to help other people have a happier day too? We’ve collected some of our favorite ideas here — from nice things you can do for strangers to...

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Real Kids Sunglasses: Blending style with UVA/UVB protection

I’m like a lot of parents, in that I know my kids should be wearing sun protection for their eyes, but I’m not inclined to drop a lot on kids’ sunglasses. Then I started thinking, if I’m spending $15–20 on safe kids’ sunscreen that gives you maybe a week’s worth of protection before you need a new one, why wouldn’t I spend around that much on good, polarized kids’ sunglasses? So now I’ve got a new mindset. Related: 6 pairs of perfect sunglasses for kids We’ve recommended some terrific kids’ sunglasses over the years, including Baby Banz and Babiators. And now I’m happy to add Real Kids Shades...

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13 easy Rio Olympics crafts, printables and snacks to celebrate Team USA

I have to admit, it’s been a little difficult to get as excited about the summer Olympics as usual with all the trouble surrounding it this year, even though the Olympics are one of my very favorite sporting events to watch with the kids — I mean, when else do we get to sit back and dive into water polo or competitive trampoline on TV? So, to get us feeling more in the Olympic spirit, I’ve been looking for some fun and easy Olympics crafts, printables, and snacks. I’ll be picking a few of these to make while we watch the opening ceremonies tomorrow. It’ll keep my...

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A safer trampoline, because fewer trips to the ER is a good thing.

Our neighbors have a trampoline in their backyard, and I’m pretty sure it’s been there for the last 30 years. It has no net. No cover for the springs. It’s kind of a parent’s worst nightmare, but the kids beg to get on it every day. And who can blame them? Trampolines are so much fun. So, I’ve been searching for a safer option for my kids (and the neighbors’ kids) and stumbled upon Springfree Trampolines, and I have to say, I’m intrigued. The designer behind Springfree has the philosophy that the problems related to trampoline safety should be re-thought, redesigned,...

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Fun backyard Olympic games that give your own gold medal athletes a chance to shine

With the Summer Games set to begin on August 5, we are getting ourselves ready to do some Olympic-sized television viewing as we cheer on the amazing athletes from around the world. So if you’re celebrating what is sure to be a spectacular opening ceremonies this weekend, we’ve put together some awesome ideas for throwing your own backyard Olympic games, with Olympic themed activities for all ages. Here are our favorite ideas! Don’t worry…no pole vaulting. (Top: Olympic javelin toss backyard game idea via Hoosier Homemade) Related: Throwing an Olympics Party? Some of the coolest printables, snacks, and party ideas.   Bring all of your athletes together with the free printable...

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FinFun: Mermaid tails for swimming that take summer fun to new heights. Or, depths.

The coolest thing you’ll encounter in the water this summer may be my daughter, who has transformed herself from a normal 13-year-old into a full-fledged mermaid. And, whoa, if you have a child who would love to swim like one of these creature of the sea, you’ll want to check this out this awesome product my kids had the chance to try out. FinFun Mermaid Tails are real swimmable tails for kids, teens, and adults (though I’m leaving this trend to the kids) that actually let you swim through the water like Ariel — or Ponyo, depending on your family’s animation preferences. Related: Blankie Tails turn...

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4 reasons to consider an ecotourism vacation for your family. (Besides being awesome.)

The idea of combining education and conservation with a family vacation is super appealing to parents, which is why ecotourism is such a fascinating concept for me — and maybe for you. If you’re not familiar with ecotourism, it’s aimed at providing travelers with environmental awareness by offering experiences that also support conservation. But in my own research, so many ecotourism vacation options involve heavy travel, often internationally, which can definitely be costly for families — especially for my family of five. That’s why I was so thrilled to learn about Jekyll Island, a small spot off the coast of Georgia,...

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13 cool art projects for those summer seashells

If you’re feeling a bit #clambitious about that bucket of shells you and your kids collected on your beach vacation, we’ve got good news for you. Here, we’ve rounded up some of our favorite art projects for those summer seashells, good for kids of all ages, ranging from quick and easy breezy to more difficult all-day crafting. No clamshell bras, promise. Related: 9 fun, easy crafts using shells to remind the kids of your summer vacation At top: seashell garden | alisaburke 1. DIY Seashell Seahorse This one looks more complicated than it is, really—and the end result will look great in...

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4 fun DIY friendship bracelet patterns for a rainy (or just unbearably hot) day.

It’s no mystery that crafts for kids are great for when they’re feeling a little listless (or demanding to go to the pool yet again). But tons of prep work and shopping for supplies (Dremel tool. Um, no)? Not really worth the hour or two of entertainment they might provide. Thankfully, these DIY friendship bracelet tutorials require little more than colorful string and some focused attention (theirs, not yours). And hey, along the lines of the adult coloring trend, you might get a little respite and relaxation making them yourself. Ah, nostalgia.   Related: 3 DIY dreamcatchers for happy crafting and sweet dreams....

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10 cool nighttime activities for kids that let you be the fun parent

With the kids out of school and the days so much longer, I’ve been trying to make summer extra fun for them, which means extending bedtimes way past their normal time and heading out for nighttime adventures. Seriously, there are so many fun things to do with kids when it’s dark (even though admittedly, I find them sleeping soundly in their beds very fun. Ha). As a glasses wearer, this has all been made so much easier for me thanks to our newest sponsor, ZEISS DriveSafe, which can actually give you better vision at night. I’m not sure if it’s my age (cough 40 cough) or...

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The 2016 best board games of the year from Spiel des Jahres. Family game night just got a whole lot cooler!

During the summer I usually let my kids stay up late, but we ditch the screens and play board games together instead. So, each year I keep my eye on the Spiel des Jahres award-winning board games to find the best new board games that are guaranteed to be interesting for the whole family. Sorry, Chutes and Ladders. This German-based award that literally means “game of the year” is basically the Pulitzer prize of board games. They consider games from all over the world, and we’re never disappointed with their choices. So, we wanted to share the winners that were announced today, because it just so happens we have loved...

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Finally, a beach towel that leaves the sand at the beach. Whoo!

My idea of a perfect day? Relaxing at the beach with a fun read while the kids play in the waves and never argue. Not even once. Okay, maybe that’s not so realistic, but what might make me almost as happy is a beach towel that sand won’t stick to. So, as you might guess, I was very excited to discover this new sand-free beach towel and put it to the test. CMP is an rstyle affiliate Related: The very best beach umbrellas and tents for families, after a ton of research The construction of Sandusa sand-free beach towels (that’s pronounced “san-doosa,” by...

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A super simple tip to help your kids with their summer reading right now

It’s probably one of my kids’ least favorite things to talk about these days: Summer reading. Which is odd, because they really do love to read. They just don’t like someone else telling them what they have to read — and when to read it. Recently, though, a friend recommended this very easy tip: Invest in a summer reading journal to make the required reading a bit more exciting. I decided it was worth a try, and so, I picked up this Reading Journal for Kids (available from our affiliate Amazon, in different versions for kids’ ages and reading levels) to help my...

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The coolest free printable adult coloring pages on the web. Because we deserve a little Prismacolor action too!

The adult coloring trend is here to stay, and rightfully so, considering it can help you focus and give you some much-needed relaxation. And best of all, no special skills required, just some cool coloring material and art supplies. That’s exactly what you’ll find at our sponsor Staples, who’s the go-to for the popular Prismacolor art supplies that now happen to be on sale. So, snatch some up for yourself (sorry kid-proof lock not included), then check out these 14 cool, free printable adult coloring pages we found on the web that we hope will bring you some much-needed zen. Don’t miss a...

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3 DIY dreamcatchers for happy crafting and sweet dreams

As a child, I long believed that dreamcatchers capture your nightmares in their web to keep sleep sweet and worry-free. As an adult, they still have a nostalgic pull on me. Plus, they’re really gorgeous. I recently found some truly fantastic DIY dreamcatcher tutorials, and came to realize whether you’re looking for new kids bedroom decor or a way to entertain the kids on a rainy summer day, DIY dreamcatchers will work magic. (I also learned that dream catchers are a type of hair extension, which I don’t recommend kids try as a DIY project). Fun and easy, and with such a cool,...

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The very best beach umbrellas and tents for families, after a ton of research

You cannot even believe how much time I spent last summer tracking down the best beach umbrella. I finally went with my parents’ strongly recommended pick, which was a surprise one to me. (And you have no idea how strongly recommended it was, unless you a) know my parents or b) saw their 18 emails detailing just why it was the very best one and how they spend even more time researching products than I do and how I’d be crazy not to buy it.) Well, thanks to my parents and my own obsessive beach umbrella-searching skills, I’m here to share...

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18 fun, free printable summer coloring pages for kids. Good ones!

Now that we’re deep in the heart of summer, I find my kids like cooling down in the afternoons with some crafting time, and free printable coloring pages for kids often do the trick. Whether you’re passing time, celebrating a summer birthday, going screen-free on a road trip or just delighting in all those mornings your kids wake up with the sun at 5:15 AM and need something to do besides waking you — I put together some of the coolest free printable summer coloring pages I’ve seen around the web, for kids of all ages. Did I mention they’re free? Yup. All...

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The coolest bike helmets for kids. As in, ones they’ll actually want to wear.

Now that summer is here, our kids are looking for chances to bike, scoot, and skate to the park or pool with us. Yay for extra activity to wear them out, but we can’t help but think about their safety too. And we know it starts with a good helmet. The best helmet in the world won’t do any good, though, if your kid doesn’t want to wear it. To help you out, I’ve spent hours searching our favorite shops (so you don’t have to) to find the very coolest bike helmets for kids. As in, ones they’ll actually want to wear. Our kids...

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