Toddler Activity: Backyard Scavenger Hunt

Being outside is a staple in Mila and I’s life. Everyday, we explore our backyard and the world around us. To keep the fun going, we love to do mini backyard scavenger hunts.

We’ve done this before by finding different colored objects. It’s great for color recognition, but sometimes can be hard to find all the colors.

To switch it up a bit, we got really specific with our latest hunt.

If you’d like to do this activity and prep, all you need is a scrap piece of cardboard or paper to write down the different items. Then, just get outside!

For ours, I wrote down different items that I knew were in our yard. I ended up drawing little pictures of the items too because Mila can’t read. It helps her see the words, but also understand what she needs to get too.

We set up a home base for the cardboard to stay, then she went on her search.

She’d point and say which item she was going to go get. Then she went on her way. It was fun watching her pick out the items.

I could have sworn she’d get a handful of dandelions, but came back with a little white flower instead. Her rock also made me laugh the first time because it was so big. Then the second time she did it, she found a really small one.

I love activities that get her outside and thinking. We could have had different items on this and will most likely expand too.

Other items could be leaves, dirt, bug, and maybe a random object. Or you could do a specific count on the items. Such as, find five rocks and three flowers. The opportunities are endless!

Mila actually did this for a little while. It was nice to just sit and work on my computer as she found the different items. We’ll definitely be using different scavenger hunts all summer long since she loves them so much!

What items would you have your child find in your backyard?

Unexpected Gains: An Adventure in Toddlerhood and Grief.

Okay, so, I’ve already failed writing every day in May.

Instead of writing, like I wanted to, I’ve either been outside, redoing things in my house or making DIY Mother’s Day crafts. With all the stuff happening in the world, it’s still nice to just connect with Mila and me to do heartwork and do the things that make us happy.

This week, we went on a hike. It’s the first one of the year and the first time Mila has been out of town for two months (or however long we’ve been locked down). We both love to be outside and the fresh air was so relieving. There are local trails around us and we drove about twenty minutes to this one, the Norma Johnson Center. We’ve had pictures done there before and it’s such a beautiful location. There were a decent amount of people on the trails, but everyone gave each other space and were friendly too.

While we were walking we had a little project, I saw (online) a color recognition scavenger hunt for toddlers and knew we had to try it. Since Mila is liking more colors than just green, I thought it’d be fun to use this while we walked too. She loved walking to the top of the hill and playing in the little kid area. I loved watching her search for the colors. We found the easy ones first but got stuck on blue. She kept saying blue, blue, blue, over and over again, while she was looking. It was so cute and I could tell she was a little disappointed we didn’t find a blue item.

The colors we did find were perfect. She was so proud of all of them and when we were done with our walk, she wanted to touch them all again and show them off. Watching her learn and just become this little, smart person is one of the best feelings ever.

We probably spent an hour in total out there. It wasn’t terribly long, but it was just what we needed.

When I started writing today, I thought I should look back on the May We All Heal prompt for the day… it’s Unexpected Gains. The days Mila and I have are typically always good. She’s a toddler so she definitely has her moments. Every day with her is a gift. Losing Jensen was the hardest thing I will ever have to go through. Even with all the bad in his death, he and Mila helped me find these unexpected gains. Through grief, I’ve found days where I’m lost in the moment. I still have Jensen in my heart and mentally place him where he should be, that’ll always be the case. But completely unexpectedly, I can value joy and peace again. I never thought I’d get that back. Somehow, they both have gifted me this monumental gain and, really, another chance at living fully.

I would one-hundred percent recommend getting outside and even out of your backyard to give your head some space during this time. We’ve felt rejuvenated since our little hike and it’s given us a little push to get a lot of things done this week. As I said, we’ve worked on some DIY Mother’s Day gifts that I want to post on here, so be on the look out!