Don't you just love autumn? The crisp air, the bright colors and the harvest of crops can provide many opportunites from family fun - even if your family includes a baby. So if your are looking for fall baby-friendly activities, here are 7 different things to do with your entire family.
1. Pumpkin Patches
Nothing says fall more-so than a field of bright orange pumpkins. Pumpkin patches make a great backdrop for family photos, and your baby will love to feel the texture of the bumpy fall-fruit while other family members get to pickin' the perfect pumpkin. While you're there, look for some small sugar pumpkins so that you can whip some yummy pumpkin baby food treats.
2. Apple Orchards
Similarly, apple orchards are a great spot for family getaway trips. Many apple orchards allow you to traipse through the rows of trees and pick your own apples. You may be lucky enough to find orchards that also offer hayrides, small petting zoos and playgrounds.
The apples you pick gives you an opportunity to make your own baby food. Fruit and vegetable baby food instructions are easy to follow, and you can prepare flavorful combination recipes such as pumpkin-apple baby oatmeal (that's delicious for adults too!).
3. Halloween, Homecoming, and Veteren's Day Parades
I can't listen to John Philip Sousa's classic "Stars and Stripes Forever" and not be transported back to my high school-trombone-playin' days in the marching band. Every year we would do at least 3 parades in the fall, and every year the streets would be lined with families, strollers, lawn chairs and those people pushing carts with cheap "carnie" toys and cotton candy.
It's a great time to get out and about and mingle with members of your community. It also shows your support for local organizations- from the high school marching band to the VFW to the Girl/Boy Scouts and even the Shriners who wear those funny-looking hats.
4. Fairs and Carnivals
I am a sucker for hometown fairs and carnivals, and all of my babies have enjoyed them as much as I do. The smells, the noises, the rides - all good family fun. While your baby may not be able to gnaw on that candy apple or ride the Tilt-a-Whirl, there are certain to be some rides your baby can enjoy (like the carousel), and you all may want to kick back and enjoy some local musicians perform.
5. Hiking and Neighborhood Walks
The fall often provides wonderful weather for hiking, biking, and simple neighborhood strolls through the neighborhood. To help make your baby more "transportable", you'll definitely want to check out some baby gear to make your time outdoors more enjoyable for everyone. Here's what you need to know about:
6. Local High School Footballs Games
So I realize it doesn't just have to be football - there are plenty of great fall sports (cross country, soccer) out there to enjoy with the family. I just happened to be a bit of a football fanatic.
Local high school games generally happen on Friday nights of Saturday afternoons and can be a great time for you all to rally behind your favorite team, people watch and maybe even see that marching band again.
Just make sure you are dressing your baby for cooler weather (particularly for those of you north of the Mason-Dixon line). Throw an extra snuggly blanket in the diaper bag and be sure to read up on baby skin care during cooler weather.
7. Zoos and Farm Trips
You know, the zoo or the farm is an excellent family trip during the fall. Cooler weather tends to mean that the animals are a bit more active. Further, it can be nicer weather for everyone else too as they walk through the zoo or farm grounds. A piece of advice I'd offer, pack some hand-sanitizer to help kill all the animal cooties -for your hands, not their paws. (And don't worry; that urban legand on handsanitizer about hand sanitizer you may have received a few times in your email inbox- totally not true).
Check out other baby games and activity ideas.