Spending fun time outside with children is a great way to encourage children to get involved with nature. It has been proven to have massive benefits to the emotional and physical well being of children,  help burn off all of their endless energy, often ensure a good nights sleep for all and encourages creativity.

We understand that with our busy lives, it can be hard to think of what to do, below are 5 quick ways on how to have fun outdoors:

Here are 5 quick ways on How to Fun Outdoors:

1. Find a pond and explore the wildlife, encourage your children to keep a note on all they can see at different times of the year, Spring is a great time to start.

2. Go foraging in the woods for sticks and leaves and then help them build their own bird feeder. Children will seeing feed off the feeder they have built.

3. Give them their own little patch of earth or a tub and help them plant seeds, children love watching things grow. Colourful flowers are always a winner or growing their own vegetables.

4. Build a Den, this a great activity if you have children with a range of ages …… see our post on How to Build a Den.

5. Go for a walk – make it fun with a game of Pooh Sticks, night time walk?  Star Gazing can be great fun.

We hope you love some of these ideas and enjoy them as much as we do.

Just in case you need more ideas, here’s another 80 ideas of things to do outside.

Do let us know which are you favourites – sarah@myadventurekit.co.uk

 

 

Planning a Camping trip can be such fun and it a fabulous way to encourage children to leave technology behind and enjoy everything the great outdoors and nature has to offer. Camping can be daunting for first-timers. If you’re worried about getting your stuff across a campsite, the potential of rain or mud, how to stay warm, or cook a half-decent meal… then don’t worry!

Here are a few hints and tips to give you a start:

  • Check weather forecasts – do you really want to camp in gale force winds?
  • Even if the predicted weather sounds fine, take waterproofs just in case.
  • If you plan on roughing it in the wilderness, a good sleeping bag and provisions for making a fire are recommended.
  • Take any tools you will need, a checklist is a good idea.
  • Make sure you thoroughly map out where you’re going.
  • Let someone at home know where you’re going.
  • Bring entertainment – after a few hours in the woods or a field, you might at least want to read, have a drink or strum a guitar.

Finally ensure the area where you camp has something worth going to look at or nearby activities such as:

  • hiking
  • boating
  • tree-climbing
  • fishing

Key Tip: Put your tent up in the garden or nearby field before you head out on your trip. If you arrive late to the site and you have never put your tent up, you can image your trip might not get off to the best start!

 Camping is fun!

Why not Take a peak at our Camping Den Kit. 

For more great articles on camping and hiking tips take a look at MyOpenCountry.com 

How to Tie a Knot post will cover what you need to know for 2 of the most popular knots:

Figure-Eight knot

Everyone can picture this knot. The figure-eight knot can be used in a couple of ways while camping.

It’s mostly used as a stopper knot at the end of a rope under load, preventing it slipping through a device. For example, rock climbers sometimes use figure-eights to tie off rope ends to prevent them sliding through a belay device.

The figure-eight is also the foundation of a number of more complex knots, like the figure-eight loop which is useful when you need to tie a loop in the middle of a section of rope, rather than at the end.

To make a figure-eight loop, double your section of rope back on itself (forming a bight) and tie the figure-eight as normal using the doubled rope to make a strong loop.

Take a look at what it should look like: Figure of Eight Knot

Bowline

The bowline is considered one of the most useful knots anyone can learn.

A bowline forms a strong non-slip loop at the end of a length of rope which can be easily untied and has a number of uses while camping.

You could use a bowline to form a semi-permanent loop at the end of a guy rope that has worn out.

It’s great for securing tarp.

Anytime you need a loop at the end of a rope, the bowline is your go-to.

If you struggle to remember this one, try and memorise the mnemonic:

“Up through the rabbit hole, round the big tree; down through the rabbit hole and off goes he.”

The rabbit is the working end, and the tree is the standing end.

This is a fun way to learn and remember the knot.

Start rhyming and practising and you are sure to find many other uses for this “King of Knots.”

View Bowline Knot 

Capture the flag is a fabulous game to encourage children to go out and play.

1.  For Capture the Flag you need two teams of three or more and divide the territories for the teams using the rope.

2. Build your two bases using the sandbags, camo nets and the decide what happens when captured.  You can either choose to make players “out” for the rest of the game, convert to the team that caught them, or put in a “jail” to be rescued by their teammates.

3. The Game – Retreat by team into your territory to hide the flag. The flag must be hung at head height and be visible from 20 metres away on at least one side

4. Split into attacker and defender groups within your team. Attackers and defenders can switch jobs as needed.

5. Attempt to sneak across the border, find and capture the enemy flag and then race back without being caught if you are an attacker.

6. Hide around your flag or along the border and try to intercept and catch any opposing players who sneak across if you are a defender.

7. Capture enemy players by tagging them while they are on your side of the border.

8. Win by capturing the flag and carrying it back to your side of the border.

9. Jail – Put captured enemy players in “jail” by picking an area with a clearly defined border to serve as the jail.

10. Rescue teammates by sneaking across the border, finding the jail, tagging your teammate, then racing back across the border.

11. Recapture players by tagging them again before they reach the border.

We love capture the flag as children of all ages can play together and quite often the parents can join in to!

A great team game!

Making an Adventure Den can be hours of fun.

There are many great ways to make a Den and there are no rules but here are some ideas to get you started …

  1. Find 2 good strong trees (or fence posts) about 6ft apart on a flat piece of ground. Lay out the para cord between the two trees and tie each end of the para cord to the trees at chest height.

2. Throw the tarpaulin over the para cord, making sure that each side is the same length. Pull the tarpaulin tight and place the pegs through the eyelets into the ground and hammer the pegs in with your sturdy mallet.

3. These are the basic of every den, but what if you have the ultimate den kit….?

4. Fill up the sandbags with dead leaves or straw and put around your Den to mark your territory.

5. Make your Den cosy by putting duvets and pillows in there with you, if you build it well you may even be able to sleep in there!

6. Hang up your camo net to camouflage your den completely, or put 4 sticks in the ground and throw the camo net over the top – this could be another den or ‘jail’!

7. Hang your ‘Command Bunker’ sign onto the nearest tree to warn the enemy off! Find a thin branch, whittle off any side branches and then tie your flag to it to mark your territory.

Now you are ready for your Adventure to begin….

Need a sign? Have a look at look at our Command Bunker sign

A Pirate Treasure Hunt is the perfect way to keep the children entertained in the holidays.

If you’re having a summer party or simply looking for a way to keep the kids entertained over the summer why not plan a treasure hunt. It can also have great treasure hunts inside for those really wet days.

All kids love a treasure hunt, it will keep them occupied for while and will produce happy, smiley faces… the holy grail of any activity in the summer!

Now we know that planning a treasure hunt can be time consuming so we have decided to take some of the stress out of it and we thought we would share our Pirate Themed treasure hunt with you.

This step by step game will challenge the children to search for clues and figure out the answers. This game is brilliant for outdoor fun, both for times when it’s just you and them or if your having a group of their friends over too.

You are going to need a few things but don’t worry, you will be able to find some of these items at home and if not we can help you in the creative play section.

So lets get started……..What do you need to find the pirate?

  • 5 small clues for each child
  • A pen for each child
  • A hat — one for each child
  • A plastic/paper bag — one for each child
  • Pirate coins
  • Winning prize

Find the space to hide the treasure: garden, woods or even in the house if the weather is against you, hid the coins,  give each child a pirate hat, the clues and a little bag and set them off with their clues to find the treasure.

All you need then is a little prize for the winning child. Why not take a look at the adventure shop for camo cream, fun snaps, these will go down a storm, I promise.

Good luck everyone, we hope you have lots of fun with this.

Don’t forget to send us you pictures, you can email them us at sarah @myadventurekit.co.uk or contact us via facebook or twitter

 

Den Building Parties Are Great Fun.

Soft play centres, pony petting, football, paint balling, minion themed, ten pin bowling, swimming (at least the Dads can do this one!), village hall disco’s…… we’ve all been there, organised them, paid extortionate amounts to child entertainers and got the head ache.

Now, we do know that come rain or shine kids love to be outdoors – so why not take the headache out of your next child’s party and give them and their friends a truly memorable and fun day, a den building party!

What you will need for a Den Building Party…

Here is an overview of the things we suggest you will need…

  • Ready Made Den Kits– how many Kits and the type, depends on how many children there will be, girls and/or boys and their age.
  • ‘Come Rain or Shine’ attitude   – Dry is of course preferable but, in this country, we just have to accept and embrace the phrase ‘Come Rain or shine’ so don’t forget the wellies and waterproofs!
  • Location– garden, local park, woods or beach. Woods are great, as they have the trees to tie the para cord or twine to!
  • Picnic or camp fire / BBQ (if feeling really adventurous)
  • Treasure Hunts-If you’re going to create your own make them fun, educational or just plain silly. There are lots of ideas for treasure hunts on the web, click here for the Ultimate Treasure Hunt   
  • Prizes – the kids do expect them, but you don’t have to over complicate things.  A simple whoopee cushion and some sweets and cake should do the trick! Or even our water bombs or camo cream make great prizes.

Den Building Kits

Most of our kits include the den building elements, such as tarpaulin, tent pegs and a paracord, in a very useful rucksack.

They then vary and can include different and exciting items such as a 7 in 1 whistle, mallet, fire starter, sand bags, binoculars, rugged compass, fun snaps and lots more. Basically items to ensure that kids can create a fantastic adventure.

 

How many Kits?  One kit will be fine, for up to 5 children – for more children, you can buy additional kits or buy any of the items individually such as camo tarpaulin, tent pegs, para cord, mallets etc at our Build your Own.

Picnic/Camp fire/BBQ   Pre-prepared individual boxes with sandwiches, snacks and a drink are a hassle free way of feeding your little party goers – ready named ensuring everyone gets the right sandwich filling!

For the older ones, let them start their own fire with one of our fire starter kits and toast marshmallows!

You could also have a campfire sing along. They’ll love it plus will gain a huge sense of achievement.

Please make sure there is an adult around if the children are a young age.

A BBQ is always easy – a few sausages and bread rolls and everyone’s happy.

If you’re venturing out of the garden with this one, do play safe and check out if fires are permitted.

Younger Children:

Treasure Hunt and Games Scavenger Hunts are perfect for the younger ones.

Give them a list of things they have to find such as something blue. Or rather than specific things or it could be sensory things, to really get them thinking – something that snaps, something that crunches, something smooth…. etc.

Get party planning today…

So, for a party with a difference, it really couldn’t be similar to create a wonderfully memorable birthday party for your loved ones special celebration and their friends!

You’ll be the best parent ever!

First Aid Tips

Basic knowledge of First Aid can be really useful when out and about.

We’ve heard and read about it a thousand times, if you are setting off on holiday whether it’s, walking, cycling, beaching or just day tripping, make sure you take a well-stocked first aid kit with you!

According to a recent survey, a staggering 80 per cent of us are not equipped to deal with minor medical emergencies in our own homes – let alone when we’re out and about taking a break.

This not only puts us and our families at risk, but it also means that we are making thousands of unnecessary emergency visits and calls to GP’s and emergency units for relatively minor, simple to treat conditions such as grazes, blisters and splinters.

The ultimate holiday first aid kit

‘Having a fully stocked first aid kit on hand can make all the difference when an accident happens, whether it’s in the home, on the road, on holiday or in the workplace,’ says Dr Lotte Newman, a St John Ambulance Medical Advisor.

‘The kit should be kept in a convenient location, with items being replaced immediately after they have been used. It’s also important to regularly check the kits to ensure that the appropriate items are not out of date. Coupled with a knowledge of first aid, using a first aid kit could mean the difference between life and death. ‘

Here is the NHS guide to what you need to include in the perfect holiday first aid kit.

Painkillers

These include Paracetamol, Aspirin and Junior syrup pain relief. Paracetamol is preferred by many doctors for a quick-acting, comprehensive pain relief suitable for fevers, colds, flu and muscle pain, but stick to

the prescribed dose on the packet. Aspirin can cause stomach irritation in some people and has been linked with Reyes Syndrome in some childhood illness. Children should be given junior preparations such as Calpol.

Check your painkillers have been stored in a clean, dry place and that the use by date has not expired. Don’t forget to pack a 5 ml dose spoon to administer children’s preparations. Feverfew and kava kava tincture is an excellent herbal remedy for headaches especially those caused by too much sun.  There are lots more Herbal remedies-for-children too!

Antiseptic solution or cream

The most well-known brands include Dettol Wound Wash, TCP and Savlon which

all contain germ killing agents for use on broken skin, bites and stings. Check your supply is in date and that the top is fastened properly to prevent contamination by bacteria. Apply using sterile cotton wool.

For minor cuts and grazes clean the wound and surrounding area using running water and use antiseptic to protect against infection. Apply a plaster or dressing when the wound is clean and dry.

Plasters

These come in all shapes and sizes and do various jobs. You may like to include a selection.

FABRIC give long lasting protection with extra sticking power.

WATERPROOF let air in but keep water and germs out.

HYPOALLERGENIC are suitable for sensitive skins and are easy to remove.

HAEMOSTATIC plasters help to stop bleeding and promote clotting of blood.

CUSHIONED provide protection against knocks and bumps.

BLISTER PLASTERS are specially made to help blisters heal. To use, ensure blister area is clean and dry and apply centrally – if the blister doesn’t heal, becomes infected or bleeds continually, seek medical attention.

Dressings

HYDROCOLLOID DRESSINGS are good for minorcuts and grazes which are weeping or bleeding. They are specially designed to absorb excess fluid.

WATERPROOF FILM DRESSINGS are clear dressings for wounds which are dry, useful because they are transparent and you can monitor healing progress

SKIN CLOSURES are thin sticky antiseptic strips which hold together the edges of deep cuts and grazes. If cuts and grazes are minor and the bleeding is under control, clean under cold running water, apply antiseptic and apply plaster or dressing once the area is dry. Minor burns and scalds should be cooled rapidly under cold running water for ten minutes. Cover with sterile non fluffy dressing.

Antihistamines

Well-known brands include Piriton and Zirtec and can give fast acting relief against mild allergic re-actions such as hay fever with symptoms including sneezing, itching watery eyes and runny nose. One tablet gives 24 hour relief and is suitable for children over six.

Antiseptic pain relieving spray

These contain mild, fast acting local anaesthetic and is useful for relieving minor burns, bites , stings and grazes.

Thermometer

The traditional glass stick varieties are cheap, but can be difficult to read, especially in the middle of the night. Newer varieties include sticky strip forehead thermometers which are good for taking the temperatures of babies and young children and easy-to-read digital ear thermometers which give clear accurate results within one second. Normal body temperature is 37 degrees centigrade and a fever is defined as anything over 38 degrees.

Latex gloves

If you are giving someone first aid it is essential to protect yourself from infection via blood and vomit. Keep a pair handy in the car.

Tweezers

These are surprisingly useful for removing small pieces of wood, metal or glass

stuck in the body. Clean the area then use the tweezers to pull out the splinter.

Squeeze the wound gently, clean and apply a plaster. If you are unable to remove the splinter seek medical advice.

Crepe and support bandages

These are very useful for strains and sprains. Rest the limb and elevate slightly. Apply an ice compress and use a crepe bandage or pull over support bandage to help reduce swelling. Apply Arnica Cream to reducing bruising and inflammation.

Re-hydration solution

Sachets of re-hydration mixture, containing a blend of salts and sugars can be mixed with water and drunk

in cases of sickness and diarrhoea.

Travel sickness pills

Popular brands include Kwells and Kalms. There are also travel band bracelets now available which work on an anti-nausea pressure points on the wrist and are useful for drivers as they have no drowsy side-effects. Ginger is a great natural remedy for motion sickness. Grate cubes of fresh ginger and wrap in cling film to chew during a journey, or simply nibble a ginger biscuit.

Sharp scissors and safety pins

Don’t forget to keep a pair of clean, sharp scissors for cutting bandages or gauze to size.  Or for cutting hair or clothing from around a cut.  The safety pins will help secure bandages.

Various and recommended kits:

St Johns Ambulance and Boots have introduced a Children’s First Aid Kit

 

Source:  Read more: Full details

Compass reading is an essential skill if  you are keen outdoor enthusiasts.

Many children these days do not know how to navigate without their phone, this is fine until they are in the woods and there is no signal or the battery runs out! It is  always handy to have a compass in your pocket just in case an emergency.

Teaching  your child how to use a compass can be fun. 

Young people who are Scouts, Guides or undertaking their Duke of Edinburgh Award or the Ten Tors annual challenge need to know how to use a compass competently.

Here are some tips on how to get started:

  1. Begin by showing them on a map where north, south, east and west is.
  2. Line up on the map and on a compass.
  3. Make sure they know that wherever they are in the world a compass always points to  the North Pole.
  4. When they take the compass outside point to an object that is South.
  5. Show your child when they hold the compass up it will automatically point North. (If they want to go South they will need to go in the opposite direction)
  6. To help your childs confidence in reading the compass, let them know which way you are travelling at the start of a journey.
  7. Take the compass with you on trips and encourage them tell you which way you are going.

 

Check out our rugged compass

 

Den Building – Hours of fun

Den Building can be great fun for children or for the whole family. It is an activity the whole family can do or you can sit back and let the children’s imagination run wild.

There are many great ways to make a Den and there are no rules but here are some ideas to get you started:

1. Find 2 good strong trees (or fence posts) about 6ft apart on a flat piece of ground. Lay out the para cord between the two trees and tie each end of the para cord to the trees at chest height.

2. Throw the tarpaulin over the para cord, making sure that each side is the same length.

3. Pull the tarpaulin tight and place the pegs through the eyelets into the ground and hammer the pegs in with your sturdy mallet.

4.  Fill up the sandbags with dead leaves or straw and put around your Den to mark your territory.

5. Make your Den cosy by putting duvets and pillows in there with you, if you build it well you may even be able to sleep in there!

6. Hang up your camo net to camouflage your den completely, or put 4 sticks in the ground and throw the camo net over the top – this could be another den or ‘jail’!

7. Hang your ‘Danger Mines’ sign onto the nearest tree to warn the enemy off! Find a thin branch, whittle off any side branches and then tie your flag to it to mark your territory.

We hope you have lots of fun in your den and make some fabulous memories.  Please share your pictures with us, especially, if you are brave enough to camp out in your den overnight!

Enjoy your  Den………………!

For build your own den kits click here build a den.