How to celebrate the start of spring by Brenna Jeanneret for Hike it Baby

Daylight Saving and spring are officially here, and in most places, the snow is quickly being replaced with spring showers (even though we’re still digging out of the snow in Wisconsin!). With the promise of longer daylight, the days are filled with more possibility.

“Where are you? Hello? Come out, come out wherever you are!” I spend most mornings pacing my living room and kitchen repeating these words as I mock-look for my 2-year-old son. When I do find him, he jumps from his hiding spot and yells, “Hide!” This doesn’t mean I should hide; this is just an announcement that he is hiding.

Rainy-day activities … outside

The only thing my son loves more than hiding is looking for hidden treasures like stuffed animals, Q-tips, balls and especially our pet cat (although, the feeling is not mutual!).

So with spring here, I thought: Why not take this party outside with a scavenger hunt? It’s the perfect activity for the outdoors! Toddlers are so curious, it’s easy to put together a great list of items to search for, such as clouds, birds, green leaves, bugs, sticks and flowers.

Scavenger hunts are also easy to adapt for older kids by adding variations like how many clouds there are in the sky, what kind of birds do we spot in trees, or how many colors of different bugs and flowers can we find.

The weather can be unpredictable in spring, but don’t let that scare you. One of the first tell-tale signs of spring is puddles and mud – which are great for jumping in! And with a great pair of rain boots or rain jacket from Joules, there’s no limit to the fun both kiddos and adults can have. With the right rain gear, you can explore mud and rain together. Don’t forget to make a mud pie, a signature spring cuisine and, of course, do some mud painting!

Puddle jumping is an especially big hit with toddlers because it opens a whole new door of exploration. Watch how the water changes from flat to rippled, or name the things you see in the reflection.

Hike it Baby 30 Challenge

If you need extra motivation to get out of the house, sign up for the Hike it Baby 30 Challenge (HiB30) and spend 30 minutes outside 3 times a week, or hike 30 miles in 30 days. And to further encourage more spring fun and take the challenge up a notch, Hike it Baby has partnered with Joules for the new HiB30 Take it Outside Challenge, which offers a great spring scavenger hunt bucket list to help get families out of the house and into the outdoors. You could even make a game of the scavenger hunt by searching for a certain amount of items on the list, like how many puddles can you jump in? Count how many different colored birds can you find? How many different colored flowers can you find? And really, the sky’s the limit (pun intended!). Also, remember the Leave No Trace principles to preserve nature; instead, opt for photos and add a bit of fun for the kiddos by letting them take pictures of the items they find.

How to celebrate the start of spring by Brenna Jeanneret for Hike it Baby

We would love to hear what’s on your scavenger hunt list. Share with us in the comments below … and feel free to share those mud pie recipes. Here’s to spring!

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Photos by Stephanie Jacobson and Michelle Pearl Gee.

This post is sponsored by Joules.

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