April 19, 2016

Creating a backyard older kids will enjoy

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #LoveYourLawn #CollectiveBias

Spring is finally here!  And its time to head back outside.  Having grown up on a tiny tropical island, my childhood was full of adventure and freedom.  We would play on the beach, swim in the ocean and explore the jungle on the other end of the island. Unsupervised. I can only dream of that kind of freedom for my boys.  Life here in the city sure is different.  So for me, when I send my boys outside to play, they know I'm talking about the backyard.

After the weird winter we had here in South Texas the backyard was in need of some love.  I knew if we really wanted to enjoy the warm seasons out back, the first thing I needed to take care of was the lawn. I headed off to Walmart to see what I could find to bring it back to the lush lawn we have been missing.

Green Max & WIZZ

I picked up a bag of Scotts® Green MAX™ Lawn Food in the garden center.  I wanted to make sure my yard was able to stand up to this seasons fun and entertaining. And this bag of was just what I needed. One bag can cover up to 5000 square feet. Its 2 in 1 formula, not only feeds but it supplements my lawn with iron. And it also helped to bring back some of the beautiful green we were looking for in just 3 days.


I also picked up the new WIZZ™ Spreader.  It holds up to 2,500 square feed of Scotts lawn product and can be used year round for not just feeding but for weed killer, seeding and melt. And the best part is that it is battery operated.  So I was able to come home and with just the push of a button, I was well on my way to a Spring ready lawn. My were very thankful for this new addition.

Do you live in the South? Check out this $10 mail in rebate on any size bag of Scotts® Turf Builder® Bonus® S Southern Weed & Feed (where product is sold) courtesy of The Scotts Company!

Now that the boys are older, their ideas of fun have changed. How do we created a backyard a moody tween and a 7 year old with an old soul can enjoy?  It's easier when they are little.  Kids picnic table and sandbox. Water tables. Kiddie Pools.  But because we are always sending them outside, we wanted to make sure it was a place they could enjoy as much as we do.  So we sat down and I asked them, what they wanted in the back yard. And their list was surprisingly short.  Just 5 little things they wanted in a backyard.  The best part was we had most of it covered already, so we must be doing something right!

Backyard for older kids

#1.  Space.

The boys had outgrown the swing set and we got rid of it.  Now we have the just the shed.  Soccer is an everyday thing. Football too. They can get pretty rough out there.  Just another reason I need to make sure the lawn is lush and creates a soft landing.  The little one loves baseball but by the time he was 3, he was hitting balls over the fence into the neighbor's yard.  So we had to save the bat for the park.  Or so we thought.

backyard balloon baseball

Then we discovered water balloon baseball!  No more lost balls.  And on a hot day, the cold splash of water feels amazing.  They got such a kick out of this game and it keeps them busy for quite some time. Water balloon dodge ball is another favorite!  

#2. A space to relax.

Alex reading

Last year David bought me a hammock.  Not really just for me, but I had been bugging him to buy me one for a while and he finally gave in.  The boys love to hang out on it and wind down. While the boys are at school, I love to lay out there and read. And no matter what anyone says, I have never fallen asleep out there and almost been late to pick up kids from school.  If there are no pictures, it never happened, right?  The boys however, are always falling asleep out there.

A place to rest

#3 A place to eat.

I am not surprised this made the list. Is it just me or do growing boys never stop eating?  We love eating on the patio.  Breakfast out back before it gets too hot was one of my favorite things to do with Alex before he started school. Backyard soccer half times usually includes a cold drink and a snack. And BBQ hot off the grill tastes so much better when its eaten on the outside.

Ant homework outside

The patio table also doubles as an outdoor office/desk.  One of their most favorite things to do is take their after school snacks outside and do homework on the patio.  It seems the fresh air helps them think better.

#4. Something hands on or a space to be creative. 

This one kind of caught me out of the blue.  My first though was "Oh sure, now they miss the swing set!"  But they explained that it would be nice to have something they could work on themselves. So we brainstormed. A flower or vegetable garden was on the top of the list, but I had to put a hold that that because we currently have a very curious foster puppy.  A rock wall and zip lines didn't make the cut either.


They settled on a chalk boards.  While we were shopping for supplies the boys decided they each wanted their own boards instead. So our weekend project was decided. We came home with wood, chalkboard paint, rollers and hooks and went to work.  We decided to go with hooks to hang them so that we are able to put them up and take them down when it rains. Like it has been doing since we finished them.  But since they are removable, we can just bring them on the patio and still get our chalk on!

So quick recap.  They said they needed a space to play.  Check.  A place to relax.  Check.  A place to eat or refuel as they like call it.  Check.  And a place to be creative.  Check. But what is the 5th and final key to a back yard they could enjoy?

# 5 Us

It's so easy for us to get caught up in the day to day things. Dinner needs cooking.  Clothes need washing. But what kids need more than Pinterest worthy dinners and wrinkle free clothes, is us. So take a few minutes to get out there and show them how it's done.  Lead by example.  Spend time with them outside.  Read books with natural lighting.  Lay in the grass and find shapes in the clouds. Turn up some music and dance...in the sprinklers.  Put up the tent and go backyard camping.  Invite friends over for S'mores nights.  There are so many ways to create a backyard that your kids will enjoy.  And what they really want is us out here with them having some fun.  The best present we can give our children is our presence.

Do you and your family spend time in your backyard?  Check out other Scotts products here and let me know how you will love your lawn this Spring!

Looking for specific information for how Scotts® Green MAX™ Lawn Food can help solve your lawn problems? Click here to sign up for the Scotts' email reminder service to receive specific tips and information for your area!

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