10 Things We Did As Kids That Give Us Major Nostalgia -- Bring Them Back!

Wendy Robinson | Apr 13, 2016 Big Kid
10 Things We Did As Kids That Give Us Major Nostalgia -- Bring Them Back!

kids at play

It can be so easy to feel like childhood today is totally different from how it used to be. I grew up before the Internet, cell phones, social media, or even regular use of a good old bike helmet. While I think it is cool to see my kids learn to use technology, I love the moments when they play in old-school ways like I used to.

It's undeniable that fresh air and active play are good for our kids. I asked some other mom friends to share the ways they used to play that they want to see make a comeback -- consider this a warm-weather to-do list for your kids!


Image via iStock.com/SolStock

  • Obstacle Course


    iStock.com/ emholk

    "I basically spent all of my childhood playing outside. My mom was one of those 'go outside and don't come home before sunset' kind of moms. My brothers and I used to love to make obstacle courses in our backyard -- super fun. That is due for a comeback, I think." -- Posey W., Greenly, Colorado

  • Bugging Out


    iStock.com/ mikanaka

    "I had a small box with holes poked in the top and a magnifying glass. I was a bug scientist. I spent hours looking for creepy crawlies. Kids should do that kind of stuff more. I wish they did." -- Leslie F., Saint Paul, Minnesota

  • Kick the Can



    "Why don't kids play 'kick the can' anymore? Kick the can was awesome! Bring back the can!" -- Tina P., Pella, Iowa

    More from The Stir: The Joys of Playing With Kids (and Their Toys!)

  • Playing with Buttons



    "This may sound totally boring, but when I was a kid, my mom had this coffee can filled with buttons. I used to spend hours playing with those buttons-- sorting them into categories, pretending they were fancy jewels, playing restaurant with them, seriously playing for hours. I should totally start saving buttons for once my kid is out of the swallowing things phase." -- Lenore T., Des Moines, Iowa

  • Digging a Hole



    "I don't trust anyone who never tried to dig a hole 'to China' when they were a kid! My sister and I dug a huge hole one summer -- we worked on that sucker for days. Last spring I let my boys use my shovel and they promptly got to work digging a massive hole. Did it make a part of my backyard ugly? Yes. Did they play together, without fighting or needing me for days? YES." -- Mandy B., Lansing, Michigan

  • Making Mud Pies


    iStock.com/  IceArnaudov

    "I think so many moms I know are like way too OCD about letting their kids get dirty. Getting dirty and making mud pies was one of the highlights of being a kid. This spring, I resolve to let my kids play in the mud like I used to." -- Clara P., Overland Park, Kansas

  • Sewing


    iStock.com/ mediaphotos

    "I was doll-obsessed as a kid, and one of my favorite things to do was to use scraps of fabric my mom, a seamstress, had leftover and hand sew new outfits for my dolls. They wore a lot of toga-style tube dresses. Now that my daughter is getting older, I got her a little sewing kit, so she can do the same!" -- Faith W., Bozeman, Montana

    More from The Stir: Sewing With Children: An Inspired Mother/Daughter Project

  • Building a Tree House



    "When I was a kid, my sister and I built a tree house in our backyard. No blueprints, no help from our parents, just access to a hammer, nails, and some extra wood. We spent all summer working on that thing and we thought it was awesome. I'm sure it was a hot mess, but it sure was fun!" -- Allison W., Tucson, Arizona

  • Free Art


    iStock.com/ kolinko_tanya

    "I see my friends doing all of these elaborate craft projects with their kids. I guess that can be fun, but I can't help thinking about how when I was a kid, I just had a box of paint and random art supplies and I could do whatever I wanted with it, as long as I didn't paint the walls. I think that is way more creative for kids then always having to do some perfect themed craft." -- Laurel G., Shoreview, Minnesota

  • Catching Fireflies


    iStock.com/ huePhotography

    "You know what is still fun? Catching fireflies! Nothing says summer like having a glass of wine with the neighbors while the kids occupy themselves trying to catch fireflies in glass jars. Classic." -- Josie F., Saint Paul, Minnesota

kid activities independence

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