Sure, the decreasing temperatures might have you looking forward to building a fire in your living room fireplace and relaxing in a comfortable chair with blankets, a book, and a warm drink. But while the prime period for backyard enjoyment may have passed with summer, there are still a great many ways you can enjoy your backyard during the winter months. Here are 6 fun ways that you and your family can use your backyard, even in the dead of winter.
Gather around a fire pit.
A campfire need not be a luxury that you and your family enjoy only when on a formal campsite; you can enjoy a warm, relaxing campfire right at home when you custom-build a fire pit in your backyard. A basic fire pit requires only a shovel, some gravel, wall blocks, and wall block adhesive. You can dress up your fire pit with additional landscaping to include a surrounding seating area, or with a metal grate on top to make fire pit cooking a cinch. You might even decide that your fire pit becomes not only a place for relaxation but also a place where you regularly prepare meals with loved ones. Hungry for some fire pit recipe ideas? This article contains five great recipes that for you and your family to try at your fire pit.
Keep using your deck.
Your deck can be made more comfortable than you might think during the winter months; all you need are a couple of space heaters or a deck heater, and you can keep enjoying your deck just as you do during late spring, summer, and early fall. Still dress warmly, of course!
Relax in a hot tub.
Much like the fire pit, a hot tub is a luxury that many don’t realize they can easily integrate into their backyards. Today’s hot tubs feature a wide variety of high-tech conveniences, such as one-touch controls, hydro massage jet kits, wireless multi-source sound systems, waterproof wireless TVs, and room for up to nine adults. Today’s hot tubs also happen to be more affordable and more energy efficient than ever, meaning you’re probably closer to your hot tub owning dreams than you think.
Try out backyard camping.
If you’ve never tried camping in the winter, camping in your backyard could be the perfect way to try your hand at it. You and your family can try planning and packing for your “staycation” just as you would for a long-distance camping trip, being sure to include thermal clothing and insulated sleeping bags to keep warm. Other great additions to a winter camping trip—backyard or otherwise—are hand warmers (to keep your sleeping bags warm), thick sleeping pads, a tarp for wind, and matches kept in a glass container (which will withstand dropping temperatures).
Play in the snow.
Of course, if you’re lucky enough to have snow in your region during the winter months, the backyard is the perfect place for some serious snow play. Here are just a few of the things that you and your family can do with snow in your backyard:
- Have a snowball fight.
- Build a snowman—or other fun creatures.
- Create snow angels.
- Have a hula hoop contest. (It’s a lot harder in your winter gear!)
- Blow bubbles and watch them freeze.
- Build an igloo.
- Make snow graffiti with spray bottles filled with water and a little food coloring.
- Play tic-tac-toe with sticks and pine cones.
- Create snow castles with your sand castle supplies.
Feed the birds.
Feeding the birds that frequent your backyard during the winter months can be a fun activity in and of itself—and it can help those birds that have trouble finding food following the sharp decline in temperature. You might try investing in a few bird feeders and hang them from trees in your backyard, filling them with a particular bird seed that is suited to the birds that regularly visit your backyard. Black-oil sunflower seeds, suet, and—yes—peanuts, are three of the most popular options for bird feeders. And if you’re particularly bird-minded, you might landscape your backyard before the winter months to include evergreens, shrubs, and roosting boxes—all safe places for birds to retreat in wintertime. Then you can enjoy looking out your window and watching birds fly in and out of your backyard all winter long.