Oklahoma can be tricky, especially when it comes to the seasons. A brisk early October day can prompt you to bring out your scarves, pumpkins and sweaters, only to be met with a 90 degree tomorrow. Oklahomans learn to work with the weather we have, hope for some cool days with fall foliage and simply say, “Bring on the cider and pumpkin spice!”
With Fall Break a few weeks away, many families may be looking for opportunities to enjoy the season together. Your idea of fall family fun may be honoring an annual tradition or venturing out for an activity brand new to you all.
Some great ideas include:
- Find a local pumpkin patch to explore. Today’s pumpkin patches offer much more than just a pile of gourds. From bounce houses to corn mazes and hayrides to pumpkin cannons, your family is sure to have a great time. First Church in Bartlesville offers a pumpkin patch in town. Oklahoma Heritage Farm http://okheritagefarm.com and Annabelle’s Fun Farm http://www.annabellesfunfarm.com both are nearby and provide a corn maze, pumpkin canon, pumpkin patch, petting zoo and more.
- Start a leaf collection. With the leaves turning vibrant reds, oranges and yellows, this can be an excellent time to teach children about the season and have them search for various colors to add to their collection.
- Rake a neighbor’s leaves as a fun, service-oriented surprise. Don’t forget to jump in the piles along the way!
- Take a hike. One of the best ways to enjoy the fall season is to be outdoors in it with your children. Local options include Osage Hills State Park, Woolaroc’s walking trails and Tulsa’s Turkey Mountain area.
- Bake some fall treats such as pumpkin bread, apple pie, pumpkin pie, apple crisp or your family’s personal favorite. Not only will your taste buds thank you, but also your home will smell vividly like autumn.
- Check out some local spook walks or haunted houses with older kids. Locally, Mainstreet Bartlesville’s Ghost Walk is held downtown October 18th and 19th.
- Find a spot for a small campfire or backyard fire pit and make a night of it. With roasted hot dogs, apple cider and s’mores for desert, your evening is sure to be a hit.
- Make a living room fort, pallet or outdoor projection screen and watch an age appropriate Halloween movie. For younger kids, it may be Winnie the Pooh’s Heffalump Halloween, The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad or It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown. For older kids or teenagers, movies like Beetlejuice and The Addams Family offer a bit more thrill without the horror.
- Carve pumpkins and be sure to remember to roast the pumpkin seeds for a healthy and delicious snack.
- Open your windows and let in some fresh fall air.
However your family celebrates the season, be sure to carve out some dedicated family time to spend with your kids. Life can get busy with work, school, extra-curricular activities and other commitments. Each season serves a reminder to review your priorities and seize the opportunity you have right now to spend focused time with your children. In a few weeks when Thanksgiving is upon us, we have no doubt that time spent with family will be among the top of your gratitude list.