Let’s play choose your own adventure 🙂 Ready? Here goes:
It’s been raining all week and you and the kids have been cooped up indoors. You seized the opportunity to focus on spring cleaning tasks- wiping walls, freshening upholstery, scrubbing tile grout- the whole nine yards. The kids have played Legos, taken Popsicle baths (they’re awesome, trust us!) and painted a zillion pictures. Now they’re going stir crazy. You can see them staring out the window as the rain subsides and clouds roll away. And, it’s not just the mud; it’s also the water that accumulates in the grouts, which, if left alone, may serve as a breeding ground for molds. That is why I might have to purchase a mold and air quality testing kit just to ensure that our home is still safe. I am terrified because I am aware that molds can cause a variety of allergies as well as diseases like skin rash, itching, and so on.
The minute the sun starts poking through they turn to you and BEG “Can we please go outside now?!?!?” Do you:
A) Take one look at the mud and puddles and offer an encore of the Frozen Sing a long movie instead.
B) Hand over their rain boots and and grab your camera. This is what childhood is made of!
I choose B all the way (and I make no apologies for bringing my camera along for the fun- I want to remember these moments!) But maybe you’re more of the type A person- The thought of mud and water all over the kids, and potentially all over your clean house, makes you shudder. Although, those people who use a maid service Austin way, or wherever they are living, have fewer concerns about this. When you have regular cleaning services in your property, kids getting mud on your floors is no longer a worry! A lot of people don’t use these services though, so it can be a tough decision for many parents. You know it’ll be fun for them…but you don’t think you can handle it. If that describes you, then read on. These tips for mud play can help ease your fears and make mud play fun for everyone 🙂
Rule #1- No coming in and out of the house. You play outside until you’re done, then it’s straight to bath
Where the mud goes is no doubt a primary concern of yours. Nobody wants it tracked indoors. Typically my kids are in and out of the house all day, but on muddy days they know this is our #1 rule. (Be ready to hose off feet and have a towel close by the door for when they are ready to come inside).
Decide where to play (to best avoid mess)
We have plenty of weedy dirt patches in our yard which we can use to keep mud far away from the house. If you don’t have those then the next best place is the deck or the patio. Before you do get out there, you should make sure that your patio is good and safe for children to play near, you don’t want any sharp edges or unevenness to cause a hazard while they are playing. Should you find that things aren’t as even as they initially were, you may wish to get in touch with someone like these mud jacking contractors to see if they would be able to get your patio looking even again and safe for kids to play around. A good pressure washer will make it look good as new and get the mud out of the cracks after a day of play. Many Deck Restoration sydney companies offer pressure washing or regular deck cleaning services if you don’t have a washer of your own (or you could use a hose if you don’t mind dirt showing in the cracks). Barring that, a re-purposed sandbox or water table with dirt can allow your little ones to make mud pies even on a perfectly manicured lawn.
Weather permitting, let the kids go sans clothes
(This tip is best used for when the you get a humid rain or when the weather is warming up, but there’s still mud outside to play in). Clothes get weighed down and uncomfortable when they’re wet/muddy. Your best bet is to let the kids go in nuthin’ but undies.
Have the right outerwear
I know this goes against our second tip, but there are days that it’s too cold to go outside naked (we don’t let a little chill keep us in, though!) On those days, we grab rain boots and umbrellas for puddle jumping and mud pie makin’ fun!
Have the right toys
While kids can definitely enjoy mud all on its own, there are some toys and tools that we enjoy having available (like our mud kitchen and DIY mud pie food). Old pots and pans are a natural mud accessory, too. Other toys we like to have available are these extra large dinosaurs and tractors (my boys dig tractors! See all our tractor related posts here).
Don’t put if off for a rainy day
Why wait for mother nature to dictate when you play in the mud? Grab the garden hose and go for it right in the middle of summer!
Take the Mud Play Challenge and share your photos with us!
So many parents are scared of letting their kids play in the mud, let’s be a source of encouragement and inspiration for one another on Instagram (my favorite place for mommy community!) Take the Mud Play Challenge with us and share your photos (old or new) of muddy fun using the hashtag #mudplaychallenge and #munchkinsandmoms.
I cant wait to connect with you and see how you learn, play, and grow alongside your kids <3