As your grandchildren get older and approach the teen years, do you find yourself in a quandary as to how to entertain them at your house in your backyard? That was my dilemma, but in this blog, I'll show you how we solved it.
Seems to me, entertaining the little guys in your backyard is not so hard. Many of you still have the swing sets left over from your own kids--lucky you! My husband and I moved to a new house, so that wasn't an option for us; but nevertheless, it's still pretty easy. We offered our young grands a small sandbox (hours of fun), bouncy balls (the kind you sit on and bounce across the yard), and even a LARGE empty box providing endless fun. But as the grands get older, it's not so easy. You can see their eyes glaze over as the adults talk on the patio. You certainly don't want them inside watching TV. What to do, what to do? My husband and I opted to make some games that we decided were pre-teen friendly, and that we could ALL play.
Tiki Toss game- Okay, okay. We didn't make this one. We bought it at a local toy store. And as I researched this blog, I found the hook-and-ring game available at Walmart for about $15! But all it requires to make is a hook, a ring and some string. I've included a website with the instructions.
Yard Yahtzee- Now this one we did make. My husband bought a 4x4 cedar post and cut it into 4-inch cubes. Then I used a wood-burning kit to make the dots or pips on each side. I opted for burning the dots rather than painting. I just used a game die for my pattern and copied it. It's played the same as regular Yahtzee. It gets everyone up and out of the house and throwing the dice around the yard from a bucket!
Dart game- This is a regular game of darts, but you just play it outside. Not to be confused with that deadly game of yard darts from several years ago. I found this one on Pinterest, and my husband copied it. It's mounted on a plywood board, and we play at one end of our garden, not out in the open yard where someone might get hurt. My husband has very strict rules about where waiting players stand, etc.
My husband made a backboard out of plywood, 24x30. He sealed it so it wouldn't warp out in the weather. He mounted it on a 6 1/2 foot cedar post. The post is placed in a pail of sand.
Cornhole game- I actually think we called this one bean-bag toss back in the day. My husband and I didn't make this one; our son and grandson did. It's a great father-son or grandson-grandpa project to build together, so I wanted to include it here. We love to play this game in the backyard, and we even take it for tailgating in the fall.
Here's the youtube video with building instructions:
Ladder Golf- Another fun game. My husband actually got this game for his birthday one year. We had the plans to make it, but our family bought it for him. This game was mentioned in a previous blog about camping with the grands. I'll include the link at the end of this blog. I've also included a website with directions for making your own out of PVC pipe. It's one our whole family enjoys!
Link to website for making your own ladder golf.
Link to my previous blog about games to play when "gramping."
Backyard fun with the grandkids! I hope I've given you some ideas of things to do with older grands in the backyard! You don't want to be stuck in the house entertaining the grands as the Texas autumn fast approaches--that's the best time to be outside in the Lone Star state! And to make one of these games WITH your grandkids would be even better.
As always, I ask you to share your ideas of things you've played in your backyard or at family reunions. I love to hear and I always share.
Retired school teacher and now full time grandmother sharing ideas and looking for new ones about grandparenting!