If you’re Texas residents like us, you know that summertime is H-O-T — and not in the joyous “it’s getting hot in here” ‘02 throwback hot, but more of a “I got a fever of a hundred and three” type of hot. With temperatures nearing 120° F, Texans are more desperate than ever to find new ways to keep their little cowboys and cowgirls cool during the most brutal months of the year. We’re here to offer up some refreshing and mouthwatering DIY hacks to beat the heat this summer and suggest methods to have fun doing it. Let’s get crafty.
1. Slip N’ Slide: Oh, to be young and filled with infinite amounts of energy where your only problem in life is deciding whether you want to go head or feet first down a homemade soapy slide. DIY slip n’ slides are the absolute best ways to enjoy an extreme Texas summer, and it’s even better when you look at the price tag of what it takes to create. Let’s break it down. First, make sure you have a large enough area in your yard that can fit a significant piece of a plastic sheet (be aware of any dents, rocks, or bumpy spots on the ground). Then, secure the plastic with any type of heavy object, anchor, or velcro tape. DIY HACK: If you really want to get crafty and stay safe, wrap some pool noodles around the edges of the plastic sheet so no tiny fingers or toes get damaged in the process of an ultimate glide. Lastly, turn on the hose, add some baby soap, blast your favorite summertime jams and enjoy.
2. Homemade Frozen Popsicles: There really shouldn’t be an age limit for this one because we all know that this summertime activity sounds appealing whether your 6-or 60-years-old, or somewhere in between. DIY popsicles are the perfect excuse to stay indoors when you simply can’t bear that Texas heat anymore. All you need for this exercise is a popsicle maker from Target (they sell them for $9.99), your choice of fruit and juice, and a backup activity to keep your kiddos entertained while your frozen treats freeze for 5 or so hours. The best part? This is a sneaky, yet clever way to get even your most stubborn kids to enjoy their daily intake of fruits and veggies. We all win.
3. DIY Pocket Fan: Crafting with your little ones truly brings back a feeling of nostalgia that makes it easier to appreciate these small moments in time. Texas sure is hot but that doesn’t mean you can’t find easy and affordable ways to counter the temperature with some DIY pocket fans! This one is easy — all you need is a couple pieces of decorative paper, and a couple of popsicle sticks. Trace two circles on your decorative paper and then cut them out. Next, glue your two popsicle sticks together, side by side and wrap tape around the bottom half. Lastly, glue your two circles of decorative paper onto your popsicle sticks and voilà, you have a homemade pocket fan. Easy enough right?
4. Indoor Camping: The best way to stay cool during the summer is simply to... stay indoors. We know, it sounds obvious, but it just might save your sanity when you’re running on E. Grab some fake leaves, branches, and sticks from your local dollar store and decorate your living room to genuinely bring the outdoors in. Create a “traditional camping” atmosphere by setting up a tent, crafting a fake campfire out of empty toilet paper rolls, breaking out the marshmallows, and preparing your favorite campfire song for some late afternoon tunes. If you really want to capture the indoor camping experience, grab some glow in the dark stars and some holiday lights to wrap around the ceiling and the floor. Happy camping!
5. DIY Bubbles: Sure, this one may not capture the attention of your pre-teens, but it sure will have your toddlers out of energy and ready for a nap before noon. Making your own bubbles at home not only saves you time and money, but it also familiarizes your kids with the kitchen. Show them the measuring cups, let them help with the ingredients, and don’t be afraid to make a little mess. This one is easy — 1 cup water, 2 tablespoons light Karo syrup or 2 tablespoons glycerin, 4 tablespoons dishwashing liquid, mix together until dissolved and there you have it, BUBBLES. Whether you’re the referee for a bubble obstacle course or you’re judging who blew the biggest bubble, we think you’re ready to get out there and play!
6. Kiddy Carwash: This one isn’t as seamless as freezing some strawberries overnight but it’s majorly worth it and will keep your little ones entertained, and cool all summer long. Bring your mini-me's with you to Home Depot and turn it into a day filled with hyped up excitement for your new backyard kiddy carwash. First things first, make sure to grab a pair of ratcheting pipe cutters (although not required, it will make your life a whole lot easier) and a pack of 10 PVC pipes. It’s really up to you how intricate you want to get with this, but we suggest getting creative with some pool noodles, colorful sponges, and even some ropes or flags to decorate the pipes. Although this isn’t a full-on tutorial, we believe in you to get it done. We’re just the ideas people.
7. Backyard Beach: Mahalo! This is the coolest you are going to feel all summer. We’re bringing the beautiful beach to your backyard. Whether you want to grab an inflatable pool for $30 complemented with some Tommy Bahama sun chairs or you want to decorate the yard with a kiddie (and adult) sandbox enclosed by a cabana and some virgin pina coladas, we guarantee you will feel like you’re on vacation 365 days a year.
8. Water Balloon Fight: This one will really bring you back to the good old days. Close your eyes and just reminisce about those hot summer days when you and your siblings soaked each other with sneaky water balloon attacks, sprinting around the front yard. This one is cheap, fun, and will have your kiddos fast asleep before you know it.
9. Hat Decorating Contest: Living through multiple Texas summers has taught us a lot. It’s taught us that items like sunscreen, baseball hats, and AC are essential to a happy and healthy household. So here is an idea that will keep your little one’s sunburn free and ready to take on the outdoors. Grab a pack of plain white baseball hats from Amazon, some fabric markers, and any other accessories like stickers, or felt letters, and turn it into a day of family friendly competition. Let your children decorate their hat freely and watch as they proudly strut around outside wearing their trophy on their head.
10. Indoor & Outdoor Treasure Hunt: If there’s one thing kids will rave about, it’s surprises, treasure, and presents. Compile all three of those elements and turn it into a day your little one won’t forget! Turn the Texas heat down by starting your DIY treasure hunt indoors and slowly progressing the clues to outdoors. This way, you don’t need to worry about how long it will take for them to find the “treasure” outside under the beaming rays. Browse through Pinterest to download your favorite clue guide and treasure hunt template and you’re off to the races!
Now that you're at the end of the list, tell us which idea was your favorite in the comments below. Be honest, are you going to utilize these suggestions for your kids... or for yourself? No judgement either way, homemade popsicles are hard to resist, especially the blue raspberry ones. That’s all for now, tune in next time for another #RhythmDIY. Keep calm and Texas on!