5 Late Fall, Early Winter Activities for Families

scarecrow

Before the snow sets in, these final couple weeks of fall are packed full of opportunities to have fun with your family. Here are a variety of suggestions for how you can enjoy the end of this season to the fullest!

  1. Hay Ride

A great way to experience the changing seasons is to be out there in the thick of it! Finding a local hay ride can get the family out of the house and witnessing the beauty of Fall first hand. Orchards and Christmas tree farms often offer regularly scheduled rides.  Be sure to dress warmly and maybe even bring a blanket and thermos of warm apple cider. If you don’t have access to a nearby hay ride, you can always take the family for a picnic on a country road yourself.

  1. Corn Maze

A corn maze is a great puzzle to get lost in this Fall! Take the time to find a local pumpkin patch that offers a corn maze for older kids and/or a straw maze for the little ones and they’ll have hours of fun trying to find their way through to the end.

  1. Leaf Hunting

Autumn is known for the changing of leaves, so take the family out to capture some of the beauty. Collect leaves of a variety of shapes and colors and bring them home to preserve them. Place each leaf between two pieces of wax paper. Cover the leaf with a towel or piece of thick paper, then go over it with an iron to dry out the leaf (2-5 minutes on each side should do the trick). Once the leaves are sealed in the wax paper, your family can use them for any number of purposes: preserve in a book, cut out to hang for decorations, or press them against the windows of your house. No matter what you choose, it’s a festive way to make the beauty of Fall last around the home!

  1. Roast Pumpkin Seeds

Many families are slicing pumpkins up for from-scratch pies. But all the seeds inside the pumpkin don’t have to go to waste! Spread two cups of pumpkin seeds on a baking sheet and bake them in the oven at 300 degrees for 50 to 60 minutes (or until completely dry). Next toss the seeds in a bowl with 2 tbsp. of unsalted butter, 2 tbsp. of sugar, a half tsp. of kosher salt, and a quarter tsp. of ground cinnamon. Once they’re all mixed, put the seeds back on a baking sheet in the oven for another 10 to 15 minutes at 350 degrees, until they’re golden brown. Then let them cool and enjoy your sweet cinnamon seeds!

  1. A Not-So-Scary Scarecrow

Just because you aren’t a farmer, doesn’t mean your home couldn’t benefit from a scarecrow decoration! Gather old clothes, straw (or newspaper), a bag and some safety pins with your kids. Safety pin the clothes together, to make a hollow body. Then, stuff that body with your straw or newspapers to give it substance. Next, safety pin the bag to the shirt to make a head for your scarecrow. Lastly draw a face for your home’s newest decoration. Finally, place your scarecrow at its new post by putting it on a stick or in a chair outside. To extend the activity, add a winter hat and scarf or jingle bells to dress the scarecrow up for Christmas.

Originally Published 11/23/2016

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