A Family Staycation In Your Own Backyard
A Family Staycation In Your Own Backyard

A Family Staycation In Your Own Backyard

Daytime games, nighttime camping, and a ton of great memories.

Sometimes just the thought of planning (and paying for) a family road trip, or even a beach vacation, causes more stress than it's worth. Still, your family needs the outdoor time, no-screen time, and the quality time a vacation provides. You can have all that, from the comfort of your own home, with a simple family weekend campout in your own backyard. Here are some ideas to get the party started.

A-frame Tents

This is a great family DIY project that will brighten up the yard and provide shady enclaves during the day (whether for surly teens, tired dogs, or moms who just want to read) and suitable shelter at night. Sure, it may take an hour but what else are you going to do? Watch TV? Nope.

A-Frame Tents


A-Frame Tents Step 2

Four pieces 1”x 2.5”x 48” whitewood

One ¾”x 48” dowel

Drill with a ¾” spade bit

Ruler or measuring tape


Staple gun

4 yards of fabric (approx. 46” in width)


step 1

From the top of each piece of wood (4) measure 6” down and mark it with your pencil. Make sure each pencil marking is centered onto your wood.

A-Frame Tents Step 3

step 2

Line up your marking with the spade bit and drill a hole through the wood. This should be done by adults only.

A-Frame Tents Step 4

step 3

Repeat until you have 4 holes drilled.

A-Frame Tents Step 5

step 4

Place 2 mouldings on top of each other so the holes are lined up.

A-Frame Tents Step 6

step 5

Push dowel through the holes of the two mouldings. You might need to twist the dowel to get through both mouldings. It should be a tight fit. Repeat this step with the other two mouldings.

A-Frame Tents Step 7

step 6

Spread the frame to the desired width.

A-Frame Tents Step 8

step 7

Take the fabric and drape it over the center dowel. It should be even on both sides.

A-Frame Tents Step 7

step 8

Line up the fabric with the side of the wood moulding and use the staple gun to staple all the way down. If the fabric is too wide you can fold the sides in before stapling. Repeat this step for all four sides.

A-Frame Tents Step 10

DIY bucket + bean bag toss

You’ve got your homemade tents for resting, shade and shelter, but what about fun and games? The whole family will want to get in on both making (it’s no-sew!) and playing this classic bean bag toss game.

DIY Bucket + Bean Bag Toss


DIY Bucket + Bean Bag Toss Materials

Bean bags

  • Colorful old socks
  • Bag of dry pinto beans
  • Scissors


  • Craft paint in various colors
  • Circle sponge brush
  • Cup for paint
  • White spray paint
  • Galvanized bucket (or old large coffee can)
  • Tape
  • Scissors
  • Wood dowel
  • Printable design


Bean bags

Step 1

Fill each sock with dry beans (fill to halfway between the toe and the heel).

DIY Bean Bags Step 1

Step 2

Knot the sock tightly. Make sure there is no opening for the beans to spill out.

DIY Bean Bags Step 2

Step 3

Cut the top of the sock off. Make sure you leave enough so you can tighten if needed.

DIY Bean Bags Step 3


step 1

Spray paint the galvanized buckets. Make sure to paint the inside as well. Repeat until completely covered (about 2-3 coats). Allow to dry completely.

A-Frame Tents Step 16

step 2

Pour colorful craft paint into a cup. Dip the circle sponge brush into the paint. Dab it onto a piece of paper before painting the bucket.

A-Frame Tents Step 17

step 3

Apply the circles evenly all over the bucket. Allow to dry completely.

A-Frame Tents Step 18

step 4

Download and print the points signs (or make your own). Cut just inside the grey dashed lines.

A-Frame Tents Step 19

step 5

Turn the sign over and tape the wooden dowel to the back.

A-Frame Tents Step 20

Lawn Dice Games

There are plenty of games to play and make up with dice, and it’s even more fun when you’re outdoors and using giant dice you made yourself! Try playing “Doubles,” a game where you only score when you roll doubles. Players take turns rolling two dice, and any doubles (except 6 or 3) earn 5 points. Double 6 earns 25 points, and double 3 wipes out the player’s entire previous score and they must start again from 0. The first player with 50 points wins.

A-Frame Tents Step 21


A-Frame Tents Step 22
  • 4x4 from lumber store (10’ in length)
  • Sandpaper
  • Circle sponge brush
  • Foam sponge brush
  • 2 cups
  • Craft paint (in various colors)


step 1

Start by having your 4x4 wood cut into 3.5”x 3.5” cubes. The 4x4 wood is actually closer to 3.5.” It’s easiest to ask your local hardware store to cut it for you. Sand off any rough edges before you start painting.

A-Frame Tents Step 23

step 2

With your foam brush, paint all 6 sides of your cube. Allow to dry.

A-Frame Tents Step 24

step 3

Fill the cup with the desired color for the dots. Use the circle foam brush to apply dots on each side, as on dice.

A-Frame Tents Step 25

step 4

Once dice are dry, use sandpaper to sand the edges.

A-Frame Tents Step 26

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