Creative Ways to Beat the Summer Heat at Home

In case you somehow didn’t notice, it’s been pretty hot in Connecticut so far this summer. It’s only just barely July, and we’ve already had several visits to the park ruined by swings that were too hot to even sit on, and one beach trip that lasted a full fifteen minutes before both boys (and I) were melting, whining puddles on the sand. We’ve visited plenty of places with A/C, including indoor play areas and children’s museums, but sometimes it’s nice to have fun at home and save some money. We lack both a pool and central air, so our best bet is to put on clothes we can splash around in and head to the yard. Here are our tips for staying cool- while still having a great time- at home!

  • Fill a large container with water from the hose. Add a squirt of dish soap and a few cut-up sponges. Bring out plenty of toys for your kids to “clean”. Refill with plain water to rinse, and set them out to dry in the sun. Your kids will be soaked…but they’ll be cool, and your toys (and your kids) will be clean!
  • Cook up some “ice soup” using a large bowl of ice cubes and lukewarm water. Give the kids different spoons, ladles and spatulas to “mix” the soup with, and let them watch the ice cubes melt. (*Note- Watch the little guys carefully with this one…I’ve had to stop my one year old from trying to eat the the ice cubes!)
  • Speaking of ice, how about an ice excavation to search for frozen treasure? Fill a large plastic container with water and toss in some small toys. You can even use toys you already have lying around the house…balls, plastic animals, etc. Freeze the whole container, and provide your kids with a bowl of lukewarm water, cups, and plastic kitchen utensils to free the toys from the ice.
  • Too hot for lunch or snacks? Chill out! I only endorse specific products if I really think they’re great….and this product fits the bill. Buy a Zoku pop maker. Seriously. When I first saw them, I thought the price was ridiculous. $36 for a pop maker that makes TWO pops? I have one that makes FOUR pops that I got from the Christmas Tree Shop for $3. However, the Zoku makes two pops in SEVEN minutes…on your countertop! And because they’re sort of flash-frozen, they taste exactly like grocery store pops. Keep your Zoku in the freezer all the time, and whenever the mood strikes, make pops almost instantly! When the kids are too hot to eat, we make smoothie pops or fruit and veggie juice blend pops. These kids will eat anything in pop form. For the grown ups, you can make flavored iced coffee pops or delicious chai tea pops…or our favorite…homemade pudding pops…mmmmmm.
  • Plant something…anything! This time of year there are peach pits, avocado seeds, and, if your yard looks anything like mine, tiny maple tree sprouts everywhere. Why not let your kids grow something in a pot? Take out a library book about plants and talk about how they grow. It’s a great science project, and they can cool off by watering their plants outside each day.
  • Make your regular slide into a water slide! Set up a sprinkler off to the side at the bottom of the slide, and slide into the water spray. Instant cool down!
  • Invest in a water table. We bought our youngest a water table for his 1st birthday, and both boys LOVE it. They get completely soaked every time they use it, but hey…they’re nice and cool…and quiet, too! Worth it.

Hope you’re all enjoying summer vacation so far…and STAY COOL! 🙂

The boys cooling off at the water table

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