Tuesday 30 March 2021

5 Top Tips For Getting Outside Whatever the Weather

There are many things that lockdown has taught us and one of those has definitely been how to explore our own area and just how little we had really explored it before. We've lived in the same area for over 5 years now but until lockdown hit we had never really gone for a walk around. Usually opting to just head straight to a park or drive further afield to explore. 

However with restrictions in place and daily exercise being our own chance to get out and about, it really did open our eyes to just how helpful it was to get out and about for a walk. I think many of us have found a new appreciation for a good old walk or just getting out exploring as a family right? 

Of course on the days the sun was shining, everyone was blossoming and the sky a beautiful shade of blue, it was easy to want to get outside. But it can be much harder to want to get outdoors with the prospect of rain, grey skies and maybe even snow! 

But the kids were actually very obliging and over the last year we have all grown to love getting out and about for a walk, what the weather. It has given us a chance to explore our local area, be together as a family away from technology and distractions. Plus it has been so lovely watching the kids find things to do out in nature like gathering up leaves and plants to make pictures or gathering sticks to throw off the bridge and see who's stick would pass through quickest. 

Knowing how much our daily walks have helped up, I wanted to share five of our top tips for getting outside as a family whatever the weather, hopefully they can be helpful to you too. Especially since the weather in the UK can be so unpredictable!

Waterproofs and Suitable Footwear

I am sure many of you will have heard to saying "there is no such thing as bad weather just the wrong clothes" and I really do think this is the case so often. It's no big secret that if you go out in the rain with trainers and a jumper on it won't be long before the kids are complaining of wet feet and being cold. Layers are definitely your best friend when it comes to going outside in colder weather, they can easily be added or removed when needed and can provide much needed warmth too. 

If it is raining a waterproof coat is a must (and you can find some that fold down into tiny bags now) so these can then be chucked into a bag when needed and packed away when not. If you plan on making outdoor adventures or walks a regular thing it may also be worth investing in some good quality comfortable walking boots or wellingtons too. There is nothing worse than having wet, cold feet on a walk and this can also lead to issues with your feet to so its best to keep them warm and dry to make the most of getting outside. 

Always Bring Spare Clothes (especially socks!)

If you plan on going somewhere wet or muddy then it is usually a good idea to pack a spare set of clothes, or at the very least socks, for the kids. We all know that kids are a magnet for big puddles or mud and the whole fun of exploring outside is being able to go and investigate them. But if you then have a long walk home or have to get into a car to get home, nobody wants to be sitting in muddy socks or wet clothes right? 

I usually a spare outfit for each of the kids inside a carrier bag each and then pop into a rucksack that can either be thrown in the car or carried along with us. This was the clean clothes stay dry and I also have a carrier bag to hand for any wet and muddy clothes too! 

Let Go and Have Fun 

Kids look up to as a parents, they mimic what we do and pick up on our traits. So when it comes to getting outside and having fun don't be afraid to just let loose and have fun too! Don't be afraid to get muddy, look silly and have fun, the kids will love it and it will give them to go ahead to do the same. I always say to the kids clothes can be washed and the dirt will be gone but the laughter and memories are what stay with us forever. So find your inner kid and let go, honestly the kids laughter will be worth it is nothing else. 

Have a Plan for When You Get Home

Whilst the kids can be distracted during a walk once you start walking home (or heading back to the car) the fatigue and aches usually start. The "how long until we get home" comments start and the kids energy starts decreasing rapidly. So having a plan to get everyone warmed up (or cooled down in the summer) is super important and will help eliminate any tantrums or stress when you get home! 

Perhaps have the heating set on a timer to come on half an hour before you get back so the house is toasty and warm when you get home. Or have fluffy pyjamas laid out on the beds so the kids can hop in the shower and then straight into warm pyjamas. Our kids love having hot chocolates in the winter and ice lollies in the summer after a walk as a warming/cooling treat after all that exploring. 

Plan Games or Activities to Get Started

Sometimes we all need a bit of inspiration to get us started don't we? And the same can be said for going out on adventures too. Especially if the weather is a bit wet it can take the kids a bit of time to get into the swing of things (or find a big enough puddle to jump in or tree to climb!) so having a few games to start with can get everyone moving and having fun. 

My son will often bring a football to kick around (just don't forget a carrier bag to carry it in when they get bored as it will be muddy!). My daughters favourites are definitely treasure or scavenger hunts and these can be found online to print off or you can even create your own! We have quite a few now so I ended up laminating them and giving them white board markers to use so we can use them time and time again. They are the perfect way to get the kids looking around, getting stuck in and running around, burning off lots of energy and exploring nature in the process. 

So there you have our top tips for enjoying adventures outside whatever the weather. Hopefully these will be helpful, especially at the moment when we can't really do much else and the weather doesn't look like it will be improving any time soon. 

Do you enjoy going out for family walks? 

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