Category Archives: Kids Pajamas

Blog Girls slumber party fun

Planning the Perfect Sleepover – Food, Fun & Games!

Slumber parties, overnighters or sleepovers. However you name them, they are a rite of passage that every child likely will be a part of at some point in his or her life.

These days putting together the perfect sleepover is almost an art form. It takes strategic planning, patience, and LOTS of great ideas.

So get the kids in their pajamas because we’re here to help with some great tips that will help you pull off the perfect sleepover.

Food

blog Cupcakes

 

Need we say more? The cuisine you feed the kiddos is going to make or break the event so it has to be over the top! Some tried and true snacks may include:

  • Popcorn – But don’t just give them plain old boring kernels. Make it a fun culinary game by having various toppings and ingredients that they can make their own creations with. Some may like it sweet, while others go for salty, so have plenty of ingredients on hand like chocolate chips, candy corn, nuts (if no one has allergies), dried fruits, sprinkles, caramel, and more! The sky’s the limit so set them up and let the little master chefs take over.
  • Pizza – Who doesn’t like pizza right? And the pie building possibilities are endless. Again, let them create their masterpiece with a wide assortment of ingredients. Different meats, veggies, sauces (red & white) and cheeses will be a hit. You could even use mac & cheese if you really want to mix it up and gluten-free crusts are readily available should someone have dietary restrictions.
  • Cupcake decorating – You can have the cakes pre-made so your guests can get right to decorating. Just remember to do this early in the evening because you don’t want the sugar to kick in at bedtime!
  • Healthy Snacks – Don’t forget to provide healthy options as well. Yogurt parfaits, mixed fruit, and dark chocolate-covered strawberries are just a few healthy offerings you can make available. You can also replace soda with fruit-infused water and let them create their own flavors!

Fun

Blog Flap Jacks Jumping

 

Now that everyone has a full belly, it’s time for the real fun to begin! Planning activities that will keep their attention AND give them a night to remember may seem like a challenge but we’ve got you covered. Here are some ideas to get the party started.

  • Set up a photo booth – It’s as simple as putting up a background (a bed sheet or painted piece of plywood works great) and letting them pose. Snap fun pictures and encourage them to let their personalities shine. You’ll also have pictures the kids will cherish forever!
  • Karaoke – let them SING! Need we say more?
  • Movies – Everyone likes a good movie so make sure to pick some age-appropriate movies that everyone in attendance will enjoy.

Games

There are lots of games that the group can play together that will make everyone laugh and bond. This can be especially important if you find any of your guests feeling a little homesick.

  • Balloon Races – One blown up balloon for each team and a clear space (it doesn’t have to be big) where the kids can move around is all you need. Divide the players into even teams and place a balloon between the knees or thighs of the first person. The goal is to run with the balloon between their legs without losing it to the other side where a team mate waits. Transfer the balloon to the next team mate without using hands who then returns to the other side. Repeat the transfers until everyone has had a go. The first team to finish wins.
  • Scavenger hunt – Give everyone a list of fun items to find (and keep) and send them in search of treasures. Don’t worry; you don’t have to give them full run of the house either. Limit the hunt to somewhere like the basement, living room, or if the weather is on your side, do it outdoors. Some kids will find more items than others so make sure that everyone gets something for their efforts at the end.
  • Emoji bingo – Just like the bingo we all know but with emojis! There are dozens of downloadable bingo cards online so it’s a very simple game to set up and play. Have small prizes for the ones that yell BINGO!

You are now on your way to sleepover mastery! You’ll receive rave reviews and who knows… you may even get the parent of the year award!

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Active Indoor Game Ideas for Kids

10 Best Indoor Games to Get Kids Moving

Many of us are looking forward to a 3-day weekend but for parents, a long weekend translates to three days with the kids and it’s easy to feel like a cruise director. January is an exceptionally chilly, blustery time of year and both kids and adults are mostly stuck indoors on the weekend. Whether you’re hosting a sleepover or a family game night, these fun indoor games will help your kids burn some of that excess energy. But don’t worry — no sneakers required. Your coziest flannel pajamas, as always, are perfectly acceptable attire.

Best Indoor Games for Kids

Jump around in these ‘Stay Cool’ pajamas by Big Feet.

Active Indoor Game Ideas for Kids

1. Race to the Finish. Use masking tape or painters to tape to create “lanes” on the floor. Create flashcards with different movements such as hop, skip, or crabwalk. Get creative and let the kids come up with ideas too. For example, one card could read “walk like a chicken” or “swing like a monkey” and have participants come up with their own interpretive movements. Draw a movement card from a hat at random. Players participate in a silly “race to the finish” with the chosen wacky movement.

2. Twister. The classics never fade. Twister is a still an uproariously fun game to play during a sleepover, family game night, or just a fun night in with friends! You’re more likely to topple over from laughing than from loss of balance. Just be prepared for your kids to mock your attempts at agility for the rest of the weekend!

3. Indoor Bowling. Stack plastic cups into a large pyramid. Stack them high and stack them deep. Use a 5-8” toy ball, or even a tennis ball, to roll on the floor at the pyramid. Players get a point for each “pin” they knock down. Just like bowling, the game becomes more challenging as more pins are removed.

4. Limbo! Remember this one? Limbo is a game best played in a group, so it’s a great choice for a sleepover. Grab a broom or mop and see just how low everyone can go! Remember, ‘Limbo’ is one part game and one part dance party, so have the kids help you come up with a killer playlist that everyone will enjoy.

5. Balloon Waddle. A less messy version of the egg-and-spoon race, Balloon Waddle is a silly game that’s perfect for little kids! Blow up some balloons and see if the kids can “waddle” from one end of the room to the other with the balloon between their knees, without dropping it. If it’s too easy or the kids are a bit older, set up a few obstacles for the kids to move around or hop over.

Active Games for Sleepovers

Sleepover-ready in these super comfy dinosaur pajamas by Big Feet.

6. Musical Chair Dance Party. A great group game that can be fun at any age with the right tunes! Simply gather a number of chairs that is -1 of the number of participants and arrange them in a circle, seats facing outward. Play upbeat music. The group must dance (not walk!) around the chairs until the music stops, then it’s a scramble for a seat! Whoever is left without a seat when the music stops is out. Subtract one more chair and keep playing until there’s a winner!

7. Charade-ercise. For the athletically-inclined crowd or a family of sports enthusiasts, create a game of charades that involves a little more movement than most. Create your own categories such as sports, sports-themed movies, and athletes (remember, swimmers, skiers, gymnasts, and dancers count!). Using flashcards, write down your own sporty subjects for participants to energetically act out.

8. *Lego Hunt. Treasure hunts are for more than backyard birthday parties. Perfect for sleepovers or busy little kids, create your own “lego hunt” inside your home. This game is a little more like an Easter Egg Hunt and less involved than a Treasure Hunt where you have to create clues. Simply hide Legos, or Duplo blocks for little kids, around the house. Assign each player or team a color to locate. Hide the same number of pieces for each color. See who can find all their pieces first. Play again and again to see if the kids and beat their best time!

*This game could be played a variety of ways if you don’t have Legos or Duplo blocks. Think about any toys that can be divided into categories, such as animal figurines (mammals vs. reptiles), action figures, cars, and dinosaurs (cars vs. dinosaurs, for example).

9. “Dunk” Competition. This one is surprisingly simple, yet amuses kids …and some adults… of varying ages. You can host an indoor “dunk” competition that doesn’t involve mounting a basketball hoop to your living room wall. Simply set an empty garbage can across the room and see who can make the most shots, either in a row or best out of 10. The perfect activity for a simple, sporty family game night.

10. Hide-and-Go-Seek. Don’t forget this one! Similar to a treasure hunt, a good old fashioned game of hide and seek will have kids running around the house for hours as they take turns being the “seeker.” This game is still a great hands-off way to tire out any child!

We hope these game ideas inspire you to get your family moving this weekend. For more tips and ideas for entertaining kids during these cold winter months, check out The Pajama Company Blog at thepajamacompany.com/blog.

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Halloween costume ideas with pajamas

10 Best Halloween Costumes Made From Pajamas

How is it already the end of October?! If you’re picking out a Halloween costume by fruitlessly searching for whatever is left in your size, or choosing your kid’s costumes according to whatever is still available with Amazon Prime’s 2-day shipping — you’re not alone!

Even though drugstores started rolling out plastic pumpkins and 20 pound bags of mini candy bars in August (not an exaggeration), those adults and parents who are just slightly less organized still manage to turn the event into a stressful scramble year after year. We’re offering up a solution to this madness: wear pajamas instead.

Why Pajamas Make the Best Last-Minute Halloween Costume

An overwhelming number of Halloween costumes for both adults and children these days are essentially overpriced, cheaply made onesies. Onesies themselves are supposed to be warm winter sleepwear and can be easily zipped over other warmer clothes for a great costume solution. So why not just use the real deal instead? Winter pajamas make great Halloween costumes because they’re semi-homemade, warm, and comfortable. Here are some fun ideas for pajama-inspired Halloween costumes for all ages.

Pajama Halloween Costumes

Easy Pajama-Inspired Halloween Costumes

1. The Lumberjack. Combine your warmest flannel pajamas with a hat, puffer vest, big boots, and a toy axe or faux beard and you’re done! Wear the plaid pajama top and bottoms, or just the top and your most comfortable pair of jeans. 

2. The Big Baby. Want to spend the night in a onesie? Pull on footed pajamas (they come in adult sizes!) and carry a teddy bear with a pacifier clipped to your pajamas. Easy and oh-so comfortable!

holly golightly halloween costume

Nothing says “do not disturb” quite like Holly Golightly’s stylish sleep mask.

3. Holly Golightly from Breakfast at Tiffany’s. Super simple and loaded with sass, adults can wear stylish and flattering pajamas, don a sleep mask, and some ritzy jewelry to play film’s most popular kept woman. Say what you will about Holly, but the woman knew how to lounge. 

4. A Ghost. Halloween and party supply stores may be out of costumes in your size, but they probably have a simple face paint kit or two left. Check out this basic ghost face-paint tutorial and put on a flowing nightgown or cozy white robe for an easy Halloween costume. If it’s chilly, you can wear pants or leggings under your sleepwear! 

5. The Hillbilly. Now is a great time to check out our super fun vintage-inspired flapjack pajamas, in both child and adult sizes. Made of incredibly soft, warm flannel, you’ll be comfortable on even the chilliest fall night. Pair flapjacks with a coonskin cap, boots, and a corncob pipe for a quick “hillbilly” costume.

where the wild things are costume

You have to admit, Max does look mighty comfortable in his pajamas during his adventure.

 

6. Max from Where The Wild Things Are. Yet another simple onesie costume courtesy of everyone’s favorite children’s book. Don a white onesie, purchase an inexpensive gold foil party crown from any part supply store, and find a pin-on animal tale like this one from Amazon.

7. The College Student. Perfect for adults with college-aged kids, dress up as a your son or daughter for halloween in soft, warm flannel pajama pants and and oversized hoodie from their alma matter. Bonus points if you use this pizza tote or takeout purse.

8. Tom Cruise in Risky Business. A super fun costume for both men and women. Slip into a nightshirt, white socks, and sunglasses. Warm up the look on a chilly fall night with nude-colored leggings.

Lost Boys Peter Pan Halloween

The ‘Lost Boys’ would make an adorable and comfortable family Halloween costume.

9. The Lost Boys. If you’d like to get into the Halloween spirit and reach from an obscure, but playful theme, look no further than Peter Pan’s ‘Lost Boys.’ This idea is perfect for a group or family costume. In the Disney original, the kids in the dreamlike world of Never Never Land wore playful animal-themed footie pajamas. Grab a friend with larger Halloween ambitions to be Peter Pan or Wendy.

10. Sleeping Beauty.”  We know Sleeping Beauty as a princess locked away in a tower, waiting for Prince Charming in a full ballgown… but what if we took the phrase more literally? Wear a pajama set fit for royalty and top off the costume with a toy tiara and sash. Cheeky fun!

We hope you enjoy these fun and easy pajama-inspired Halloween costumes for the whole family! For more ideas for Halloween fun, check out The Pajama Company blog at thepajamacompany.com/blog. 

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30 Easy After School Snack Ideas

30 Easy After-School Snack Ideas

We love fall: warm sweaters, scarves, hot chocolate… but for families fall is an busy time of the year. While September is the one month out of the next five without a major holiday, it’s challenging because it’s a transitional month. Families switch gears from carefree summer days to tight school schedules packed with activities.

One thing all parents with school-aged kids hear after they pick up their kids: “I’m huuungryyyy…” Take some of the stress out of meal prep with these quick and easy after-school snack ideas. With a little snack to hold them over, parents can get dinner on the table, homework checked, and the kids to sleep just a little bit earlier — giving you that much-needed down time!

Easy Back to School Snack Ideas

Snug As A Bug ‘Flower Power’ Kids Fleece Footy

Quick and Easy After-School Snacks

1. Graham Cracker ‘Cheesecake’. Spread cream cheese on graham crackers and top with fresh slices fruit or berries for a “cheesecake” effect.

2. Hummus and Veggies. Baby carrots, sliced cucumber or red pepper, and whole wheat pita will make for a quick veggie infusion before dinner. An easy way to present them with new vegetables to try.

3. Ants on a Log. Cut celery sticks into ‘logs’, fill with smooth or chunky peanut butter and top with a row of raisins.

4. Popcorn. Short on time? Pop a bag of popcorn in the microwave. If you’re concerned about health, opt for plain popcorn and top with shaved parmesan, nutritional yeast (parmesan flavor with protein and without the fat), Italian seasoning, or chili powder.

5. Peanut Butter ‘Pizzas’. Spread peanut butter on whole wheat bread and offer an assortment of toppings for your kids to add: sliced strawberries, banana, or even a handful of dark chocolate chips.

6. Frozen Bananas. This snack involves some thinking ahead, but is great way to satisfy cries for “I want ice cream!” Cut bananas in half and stick popsicle sticks inside. Freeze overnight on a baking sheet then put in a freezer-bag. Serve as you would a popsicle.

7. Apple Blossoms. Blend a little chocolate hazelnut spread with almond butter. Put a dollop on a plate. Arrange thinly sliced apple slices in the dip to look like a flower. Sometimes presentation and a touch of chocolate is half the battle to getting your kids to eat produce.

8. Steamed Broccoli with Ranch. The tough, sometimes grainy texture of raw broccoli is sometimes hard for kids to get past. Lightly steamed broccoli, either on the stove in or in the microwave, creates a much more palatable texture. A side of ranch dressing for dipping never hurts.

9. Pita Pizza Pockets. Slice whole wheat mini-pitas in half, spread pasta sauce inside and stuff with cheese and thinly sliced veggies and melt in the oven for a healthier — and sometimes faster — alternative to frozen pizza pockets.

10. Cheese Plate. Inspire your kids to be adventurous with their snacking. Slice a couple different types of cheese (cheddar, gouda, and pepper jack are fun!) with their favorite crackers and let them try sometime new. They’ll learn that there’s an alternative to American cheese slices!

30 After School Snack Ideas

Lazy One Kids “Timberland Bear” Footy

11. Caramel Apple ‘Nachos.’ This is a super neat idea. Fill a plate with sliced apples. Drizzle a little bit of caramel topping, vanilla yogurt, mini chocolate chips, and crushed nuts for a fun treat.

12. Rice Cakes with Sliced Banana. Doesn’t get much easier than this. Spread rice cakes or multigrain cakes with a nut butter of your choice and top with sliced bananas. A sweet, healthful, crunchy snack.

13. Cheese Roll-Ups. Lay sliced provolone flat, top with turkey or ham, roll up and serve! Add a little dish of mustard for dipping if you’d like.

14. Yogurt Parfait. Layer berries and vanilla yogurt in a small dish, drizzle with honey, and top with crunchy granola.

15. Cheerios Snack Mix. Don’t have time to make homemade Chex Mix? Same here. Throw some regular cheerios, peanuts, raisins, and a handful of chocolate chips in a bowl. Toss and serve.

16. Avocado Toast. Whole wheat toast topped with smashed avocado and a sprinkle of salt makes for a satisfying snack. For older kids looking for kick, add some crushed red pepper or nutritional yeast for a protein-packed cheese flavor.

17. Pizza Bagels. Slice a bagel or mini-bagel in half. Top with tomato sauce, cheese, and let your kids add toppings from options like chopped veggies (whatever you have on hand), olives, or ham or pepperoni. Place in oven at 350 until cheese melts and bubbles.

18. Fruit and Yogurt Dip. Dip makes a difference! This trick does for fruit what ranch does for vegetables. Sweeten Greek yogurt with honey, mix together, and serve dip with an assortment of fruit. The kids will love it and it’s packed with protein — keeping the kids out the kitchen until dinner.

19. Pretzels and Chocolate Chips. Introduce the kids to the lovable combination of sweet and salty with a handful of pretzels, chocolate chips, and some roasted peanuts.

20. English Muffin Toasties. Slice whole wheat english muffins in half, top with a slice of ham and a slice of cheese, toast in oven until cheese is hot and bubbly.

30 Snack Ideas for Back-to-School

Munki Munki Kids Dino Bikes Long John Set

21. Hulk Smoothies. Throw frozen bananas, a couple handfuls of baby spinach, and milk or milk substitute into a blender. The kids will only be able to taste the sweet bananas in the smooth creamy texture of this fun green ‘milkshake.’

22. Lazy Loaded Nachos. Spread tortilla chips over a microwave safe plate. Top with sliced cheese (whatever you have on hand) and beans or veggies of choice. Microwave until cheese melts. Serve with salsa or sour cream.

23. Quesadilla. This is perfect if you have a fridge full of leftover chicken or steak. Warm a pan, place a large whole wheat tortilla in the middle, quickly top with leftover meat, sprinkle with cheese, top with another tortilla. Heat and flip until both sides are golden, crisp, and cheese is melted. Cut into wedges and serve as is or with sour cream or salsa.

24. Chocolate Dipped Strawberries. Dip a handful of fresh strawberries into a little bit of chocolate hazelnut spread. Serve on a plate.

25. No-Bake Oatmeal Energy Balls. A great make-ahead snack. You can make a variety of flavors and store in the fridge and serve throughout the week. Get the recipe at Bless This Mess here.

26. Baked S’Mores. Okay, so this isn’t the ‘healthiest’ treat — but everything in moderation! Make one s’more for each kiddo, but bake in the oven instead of heating over the fire. Slip in some sliced fruit or berries if you’d like.

27. Woven Wheat ‘Pizzas’. Place your favorite woven wheat crackers on a baking try. Top with cheese slices and a slice of pepperoni or a piece of ham. Bake until cheese is melted.

28. Protein-Packed Hot Chocolate. Soy milk contains 7-9 grams of protein per serving, making it a great snack if you want to beef up a beverage. Make a standard hot chocolate pack with soy milk instead of regular milk for a more satisfying after-school beverage.

29. Baked Garlic Parmesan Zucchini Chips. Here’s an after school snack that the adults might want to enjoy too. While it’s not as quick as some of the other options, it’s a relatively low-maintenance recipe. Get the recipe from Diethood here.

30. Banana ‘Nice Cream’. Blend frozen bananas in a food processor, add dashes of milk or milk substitute until you reach the desired consistency (think soft-serve ice cream). Top with a squirt of chocolate sauce, chopped nuts, cereal, or a dash of sprinkles for a healthier take on ice cream.

We hope you and your children enjoy these snacks or were inspired to invent your own! For more back-to-school tips and family-friendly recipe ideas, visit our blog at thepajamacompany.com/blog.

Kids Pajamas for Back-to-School

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11 Best Summer Sleepover Ideas

11 Summer Sleepover Themes

School is out and the kids are home! By now you have probably compiled a list of summer boredom busters or are desperately searching for easy ideas to entertain your kiddos. Whether they are at home or bouncing in between daycare or summer camp, you’re going to have to burn that energy every weekend!

The best way to get kids to wear themselves out is with each other. Why not team up with other parents and take turns hosting sleepovers throughout the summer? The kids will have a blast and the parents will get a break. Here are a handful of simple summer sleepover ideas for guaranteed pajama fun!

Big Feet Kids Pajamas for Sleepovers

Kids Dinosaur Union Suit from Big Feet Pajamas

Best Summer Sleepover Themes

1. Under The Sea

Do you have a “Little Mermaid” at home? If so, you can’t go wrong with a classic princess theme with an under sea twist. Strategically hung blue, green, and gold streamers will create a magical kelp forest. Play Caribbean music and games, like limbo. Give the kids crowns and tritons so they can pretend to have underwater adventures! Of course, when it’s time for a movie, only one will do.

2. The All-American

What’s more American than hot dogs and apple pie? Baseball. Set up T-ball for little ones in the backyard and serve up dogs, fries, and apple pie (store bought is great — we won’t tell!). After the kids put on their pajamas, pop in The Sandlot for evening entertainment. Good all-American fun.

3. Christmas in July

Kids love this surprising, topsy turvy theme! Great for a heat wave, pull out some Christmas decorations and embrace winter in July. Lower the A/C and pull out lots of snuggly blankets, twinkle lights, and hot chocolate. Have the kids watch Elf or Frosty the Snowman in their flapjacks — a guaranteed giggle fest!

4. Roughing It

Kids love to play pretend. Set up a tent in the backyard so they can “go camping.” Roast marshmallows over the grill to make s’mores. Play flashlight tag and tell scary stories. When movie time rolls around, have them bring their sleeping bags inside and watch Open Season.

5. Berry Bake-Off

Berries are finally in season! Take the kids strawberry or blueberry picking or just pick up a few cartons in the store. Look up an easy no-bake recipe for little ones to try, like whipped cream berry parfaits, or make hand pies with older kids. The goodies will be a fun treat to enjoy during an evening showing of Ratatouille.

Munki Munki Goldfish Pajamas for Sleepovers

Goldfish Long John Set by Munki Munki

6. Waterpark

Create a water park in your backyard using sprinklers and a slip n’ slide. The kids will wear themselves out quickly running around in the sunshine. They’ll be more than ready to curl up in their pajamas and watch Finding Nemo at the end of the day!

7. Garden Party

If there’s one thing kids love, it’s getting their hands dirty! Inexpensive pots, soil, plants, and seeds will provide lots of gardening fun! Pick up popsicle sticks and have the kids make and decorate tags identifying the name of their plant. Consider fall plants that the kids can start sprouting now and plant later at home. After they’ve washed their hands and put on their PJs, pop in Zootopia (the main character’s parents are farmers!) or James and the Giant Peach.

8. Moana Dance Party

Two themes in one! It’s hard not to boogie to the incredible Moana soundtrack. Create a Pandora station based on the music and the station will automatically play similar kid-friendly tunes. Throw in grass skirts, leis, glow bracelets (for bioluminescence in the “Realm of Monsters”) and you’ve got yourself a super fun dance party! Be sure to show the movie at the end of the day after the kids settle down.

9. Pirates of the Caribbean

Kids love a scavenger hunt! Set up a pirate themed treasure hunt in your backyard. Consider small toys and chocolate gold coins as the big prize! “Capture the Flag” is another great option. The kids will have a blast swashbuckling in pirate hats with foam swords. When it’s time for bed, show Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean or for little ones, the animated classic, Peter Pan.

10. Pool Day

For the tween set who is “too cool” for themes, consider a “pool day.” There are many inflatable pool options that are great for lounging in. Set up magazines, sunblock, music, water guns, or nail polish for a relaxing day of fun in the sun. Depending on age, movie options could include Hotel Transylvania, Dunstin Checks In, or Blue Crush.

11. Frozen Karaoke Party

For the kids who can’t get enough music, how about a karaoke party with a Frozen theme? Kids karaoke machines are relatively inexpensive or you could just play fun Disney soundtracks on Pandora or Spotify. Once the kids are in their jammies and tucked in for the night, play Frozen for one more round of sing-along fun.

For more ideas for summer family fun, visit The Pajama Company at our blog, thepajamacompany.com/blog.

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15 Summer Boredom Busters for Kids

15 Summer Boredom Busters for Kids

“I’m bored!” says every child three days into their summer vacation. While it’s not our job as parents to be cruise directors, here we offer alternatives to the default response of “Go outside and play!” Unlike elaborate Pinterest-inspired activities, we tried to keep this list to activities that most children could do without too much adult intervention. Of course, please use your best judgement when selecting activities that are both safe and age appropriate for your kiddos!

Screen-Free Summer Activities for Kids

1. Water Balloon Fight

Why a water balloon fight vs. a squirt gun fight? Time! The kids will have a blast filling and making the balloons… which also incidentally kills more time. If you’re worried about clean up and the environment, know that you can find biodegradable water balloons — 500 for less than $10!

2. Sidewalk Chalk Obstacle Course

Have your kids devise an “obstacle course” with sidewalk chalk. It could be one that they skip, hop, and jump through or use with their bikes, trikes, or scooters. This activity is a great way to get them to use their imagination and get some exercise!

3. Sprinkler Fun!

Sprinklers are a classic summer boredom buster for kids! A great alternative to splashing in a pool, running through a sprinkler will amuse your kids for hours, especially when you combine the activity with others like water balloons and squirt guns. Inexpensive and quick to set up, apart from supervision, this activity takes minimal effort.

4. Sun Tea

Sun tea is a quick and easy activity that is especially amusing for the younger set. Select a tea with a vibrant color, preferably a fruit tea, like passionfruit, peach, or mango. Place several of the bags in a large, clear, glass pitcher or mason jar for a big batch. Fill it up with water and set it in the sun to “brew.” After an hour of playing, the kids will return to find a brightly colored pitcher of tea waiting for them — made by the sun!

5. Plant and Bird Identification

Plant identification is a great activity for younger children who are excited about reading and science. Give them a plant or bird guide that is specific to their region and encourage them to find and identify different birds, flowers, shrubs, or trees in either their backyard or a local park. Increase the “science” factor by giving them magnifying glasses or binoculars to examine their finds with more detail!

Summer Boredom Busters for Kids

Can’t go camping without the right gear! We love these matching Lazy One flapjacks!

6. Backyard Camping

Can’t drive out to the wilderness for the weekend? Camp in the backyard! Have the kids set up a tent, wear their favorite pajamas, and sleep outside in the great outdoors. Even if they’re not keen on spending the night outside, they’ll have a blast pretending to camp all day long. Perfect for kids who enjoy imaginative play.

7. Nerf Blaster Target Practice

If your kids love Nerf blasters, set up “target practice” outside. Give them plastic cups to stack and knock over. Another option is to have them draw and hang paper targets. If they’re of the age where they enjoy competition, encourage them to keep score and practice their math skills while they’re at it!

8. Dominoes

Another old school rainy day classic, find dominoes and teach your kids how to set up trails of falling dominoes. Look at YouTube videos of dominoes falling to get inspiration for epic examples of what people have created. Take videos of the final result and maybe post it on the web for other domino enthusiasts to enjoy!

9. Make Popsicles

Popsicle molds are pretty common these days and can purchased on Amazon or in stores like Target or Walmart. While there are a lot of “recipes” for popsicles that involve fresh fruit and a blender, simplify the activity by purchasing an armful of fruit juices. Have kids combine their favorite juices into fun new flavors!

10. Crayon Rubbings

Send your kids outside with pad of paper and a box of crayons. Show them how they can make “rubbings” of their favorite leaves and flowers to create fun and original artwork. Simply place the leave under a piece of paper and lightly add pressure with the crayon to create an imprint of what is beneath. Works best when you take the wrapping off the crayon and rub lengthwise.

11. No-Bake Baking

It’s too hot outside to turn on the oven! Search the web for “no-bake desserts.” Since these recipes don’t involve an oven, they’re often easier for younger children to make from start to finish. Great for building kitchen skills and confidence!

12. Make Collages

Drawing, coloring, and painting are a great way to pass the time. If you have a lot of magazines and junk mail, give the kids some age-appropriate scissors (or help them cut!) and encourage them to enhance their artwork by collaging.

13. Squirt Gun Painting

Using squirt guns, water, and food coloring, your kids can make paintings outside. Set up large pads of paper at a distance and fill various water guns with different colored water. Let them fire away and create!

14. Water Xylophone

Fill several tall glasses with various amounts of water. Using a spoon, tap each glass. Show your kids how filling the glasses with more or less water creates a different sound. This is a fun way to experiment with music in your kitchen!

Summer Boredom Busters for Kids

This goldfish pajama set from Munki Munki is perfect for playing in pillow fort!

15. Living Room Fort

In many regions, summer has no shortage of rainy days! When your kids are trapped inside, let them build the living room fort of their dreams: no chairs, bedding, or pillows are off-limits! They’ll have a blast building the cozy castle of their dreams. Later that night, host a family pajama party in their “new home inside of home.”

For more ideas for summer family fun, visit The Pajama Company at our blog, thepajamacompany.com/blog.

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How to Prepare Your Backyard for Summer Entertaining

How to Prepare Your Backyard for Summer Entertaining

Each year, spring comes and goes in the blink of an eye. Blooming trees are overtaken by lush green foliage and temperatures steadily climb as we cruise into summer at full speed. Summer brings sunshine, friends, and super fun outdoor gatherings. If you’re hoping your backyard becomes your neighborhood’s hot spot for barbeques, dinner parties, and July 4th celebrations, prepare your space with these pro tips.

Light Summer Pajamas

It’s heating up! We adore this summery ‘Made in America’ Flamingo pajama set from The Cat’s Pajamas.

7 Tips to Get Your Backyard Ready for Summer

1. Spring cleaning made easy.

A simple way to add some sparkle to your outdoor space is to give the patio and furniture a good scrub-down. Shave time off this process and rent a pressure washer from your local home improvement store. A pressure washer will blast away years of dirt and grime from any surface. Your patio furniture, windows, siding, fencing, deck, and any masonry will sparkle like the day they were installed — and you won’t even break a sweat! You won’t even have to get out of your pajamas.

2. Create a chef’s paradise.

The first step in entertaining is wanting to entertain. Create an inviting space where you and your family can cook, mix drinks, and socialize. First, give your grill a good deep clean to keep it running safely in tip-top shape. Consider investing in a patio-friendly kitchen island, so you can spread out your ingredients and comfortably have everything at your fingertips. Place the cooler or ice bucket next to the island so it can double as “the bar.” Guests will stop by for a drink and chat while you’re manning the grill. If there’s a garden bed nearby, it might the perfect spot for herbs. An herb garden will provide you with fresh ingredients for your favorite dishes and refreshments all summer long!

Lazy One Flapjack Kids Pajamas

Safety first! When treating your lawn, opt for eco-friendly pest and weed control so your little ones can safely enjoy the great outdoors!

3. Give the lawn a facelift.

A week or two before you plan to host your first backyard soiree, trim the grass, seed and fertilize bald spots, and spray for weeds. If you’re concerned about harmful chemicals, there are a host of “green” alternatives on the market today. Now you can keep your grass looking fresh while keeping your kids and pets safe. Even if you’re not in the mood to plant, weed and mulch your garden beds to give them a “fresh” appearance before your guests arrive. With these small adjustments, your yard will look like a manicured putting green.

4. Light it up!

Lighting is essential for creating a magical ambiance for summer outdoor gatherings. Pull out your ladder and check and replace the bulbs in your existing outdoor lighting. If your backyard is darker than you’d like, consider installing easy solar-powered lights that don’t require a power-source. Many quality solar brands have an impressive battery life and will last well into the night. Other options are battery-operated LED lanterns, that can be installed virtually anywhere with a weight-bearing hook.

5. Plan for pests.

With the warm weather comes all sorts of creepy crawlies. Again, there are plenty of eco-friendly options if you’d like to spray for insects like ants in the weeks before you entertain. Stock up on deet-free bug spray for guests and citronella candles or citronella oil burners. Another option for pest control is to plant lemongrass, lavender, and mint. Not only are these plants beautiful and functional, they also deter mosquitoes and gnats!

Creative Outdoor Seating

Get creative with your outdoor seating! This sleek modular bench can be used in a variety of ways.

6. Creative seating.

If you plan on entertaining a crowd throughout the season, having a set or two of stackable outdoor chairs tucked away in your shed or garage is a great idea. However, storage space can be an issue for many homes. In this case, get creative and choose seating that serves multiple purposes. For example, simple benches can seat many people, take up minimal space, and can also serve as a place to set a drink down. Cut logs are rustic and decorative, but can be used as either a seat or a side table. Think outside the box to make the most of your space!

7. Shade and shelter.

Summer makes us think of sunshine, but can turn at any moment — especially if you’re living in the Northeast! Whether it’s a sudden scorcher or an unexpected summer storm, be prepared with flexible shelter so your party isn’t crammed indoors or cancelled. Umbrellas with bases are an excellent solution as are “pop up tents,” which can be quickly assembled and easily stored.

We hope you find these tips useful! All of us at The Pajama Company wish you and your family a safe and happy Memorial Day weekend. Like many Americans, we look for opportunities to support the American worker and American entrepreneur. We’re proud to tell our customers about the brands we carry that produce 100% of their merchandise in the United States.

For more inspiration for family activities or gift ideas, visit us at thepajamacompany.com/blog.

Pajamas Made In America

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Rainy Day Craft Ideas for Kids

April Showers: Simple Rainy Day Crafts for Kids

April showers bring… cold, rainy weekends with the whole family stuck indoors! Make the most of a rainy spring day with easy crafts you can do with the kids. Don’t have a PhD in Pinterest? No worries. These are truly simple craft ideas that everyone will enjoy. So easy, you can stay in your pajama pants all weekend. These craft ideas only require items you can find in your house or at your local dollar store. No gold leaf paint required.

Rainy day pajama day!

These Kids FlapJack Pajamas from Lazy One are perfect for rainy day fun!

11 Easy Rainy Day Crafts for Kids

Rainy Day Finger Puppets

1. Marker Top Finger Puppets. We’re willing to guess you have a dried up marker or two (or thirty?) hiding around the house. Use the caps and materials like construction paper, yarn, twine, or pipe cleaners to make these fun finger puppets featured on The Handmade Adventures of Captain Crafty.

Rainy Day Marble Paint Project

2. Marble Painting. We love this one from The Mother Huddle! It’s finger painting with a twist. Squirt a little paint on top of  a sheet of paper inside a baking pan. Drop a marble or small ball inside and let your kiddo twist and turn the pan to roll the ball through the paint and create one-of-a-kind works of art! This craft combines getting messy with the added bonus of a noisy marble rattling around a baking pan — sure to be a hit!

Rainy Day Puppet Theater Project

3. Rainy Day Puppet Theater. Maybe combine this idea with the ‘Marker Top Finger Puppets’? A rainy day is perfect for a day at the theater, especially if your kids construct it from this cool template that you can run off your printer! Using only a cracker or cereal box, paper, scissors, glue or tape, and some popsicle sticks or skewers — your kids can quickly create their own puppet theater with this craft from BKids.

Rainy Day Paper Lantern Craft

4. Tracing Paper Lanterns. Using translucent tracing paper and watercolors or markers, have your kids create pictures and tape or glue them to old glass jars. Pop a tealight inside and you have mood lighting for dinner, courtesy of your children. The original project idea from Mamascout is a bit more involved if you want to get fancy!

Rainy Day Fun Googly Eyes

5. Eye-Bombing. Another idea we’re in love with! Using a pack of stick-on googly eyes, “eye bomb” common objects in your house to turn them into a source of silliness! This craft would be even funnier if another parent or older sibling were to come home to discover the random peepers! A big belly laugh courtesy of MiniEco.

Rainy Day Egg Carton Craft

6. Egg Carton Bouquet. The kids with love creating a new springtime centerpiece for your kitchen table. This fun upcycled craft idea comes from Better Homes & Gardens. Simply cut up an egg carton, paint each of the “egg holders,” and twist together pipe cleaners to make stems.

Rainy Day Marble Run Craft

7. Cereal Box Marble Run. This super simple marble track from Made by Joel uses only a cereal box, scissors, and glue to create hours (okay… maybe 40 minutes?) of fun for your little one. You can encourage your kiddos to get more creative and paint or color the box, add stickers, glitter — go wild!

Rainy Day Fish Craft Project

8. Fishy Fun. Have paper plates laying around the house? Create these fun, Pac-Man inspired fish from Made Everyday with scissors, construction paper, and whatever else you have on hand. This is craft is especially fun considering the recent popularity of book The Pout Pout Fish. It could be a great project after story time!

Rainy Day Brushless Painting Activity

9. Brushless Painting Station. Kids love getting messy. A surefire way to keep them busy for hours is to encourage some messy play. NurtureStore suggests a “brushless” painting station. Using utensils, leaves, twigs, cotton balls, sponges, cookie cutters… let your kids paint with anything but a brush! This craft is guaranteed to grant you a couple hours of silence.

Rainy Day Memory Game

10. Memory Game. This is a simple old school rainy day activity that will definitely pass some time! Curly Birds suggests putting a handful of objects on a tray — all the same color — and have the kids stare at it for a few minutes to memorize what they see. Cover the tray with a cloth and take one object away and have them guess which one is missing. This is not only great for memory, it’s a wonderful way to help them build their language skills!

Pop Up Zoo Rainy Day Craft

11. Pop-Up Zoo. This pop-up zoo craft idea from Tinker Lab will keep your children amused for the whole afternoon! Have them create the animals they know and recognize and then invent new ones for some whacky imaginative fun!

For more ideas for springtime family fun, visit The Pajama Company at our blog, thepajamacompany.com/blog.

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Host a Cookie Swap Pajama Party

How to Throw a ‘Cookie Swap’ Pajama Party

We’re big fans of a good pajama party, especially during the winter months. There is something about being snuggled up with your closest friends in your favorite PJs, enjoying great snacks and good movie, that feels so right in the winter. The only thing in the world that could make a winter sleepover feel even more cozy is a pile of freshly baked cookies.

‘Cookie swaps’ are a super fun addition to Christmas parties, cookouts, and family reunions — so why not host one during a pajama party, when you’re already on the hunt for sweet treats? The concept is simple: each guest brings cookies for everyone to try and enough cookies for everyone to take some home. It’s a great way to share recipes you love with friends and, well, eat cookies!

How to Host a Cookie Swap

Need recipe ideas? Check out these must-try cookies.

8 Tips for Hosting a ‘Cookie Swap’ Sleepover Continue reading

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Snow Day Activities to Amuse Kids

10 Simple Snow Day Activities to Keep Your Kids Amused

The temperatures may have temporarily risen here in the Northeast, but we know better. Mother Nature still has plenty of “winter fun” in store. Snow days are an inevitable part of parenting in many parts of the US, and yet every time they roll around we’re unprepared (like tax season, anyone?). Be ready for your next snow day with these simple activities that will keep your kids amused — for just long enough to catch up on your inbox.

Pancake Design Snow Day Activity

Pancake designs are a fun way to start the day, cozy in your flannel pajama pants!

Pajama-Friendly Boredom Busters for Snow Days Continue reading

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