Once the heat starts fading away, it’s a great time to be outside creating all sorts of adventures. It’s also a great time of year to photograph your kids, as they will be in a happier mood when not overheated, and fall presents lots of opportunities to explore the changing season. In this post, we’ll look at some ideas for keeping the kids busy and documenting their activities.
Put them to Work
Fall in our house means lots of yard work – raking leaves, cleaning up what’s left of the gardens, and planting fall flowers. These are things that kids love to participate in. Although their “help” may not speed up the process, it can make it more entertaining and give them lots of chances for fun. Planting flowers is one of my kids’ favorite things to do, especially when it’s for Mom.
Raking leaves is another part of yard work the kids really get into – literally. This is one that definitely doesn’t get the job done fast, but is a lot of fun for everyone. My kids will generally last about 3.5 minutes raking before they get bored, but once they see the pile, it’s game on!
Visit a Farm
There are a number of kid-friendly farms in the area – Gaver Farm, Clark’s Elioak Farm, Larriland, and more. My kids love going to all of these, and it’s an easy way to entertain them for a number of hours. With the cooler weather, it’s more fun to wander the farm, and there’s so much for kids to explore – slides, rides, things to climb on, and hayrides are all there. When they get to feed goats and sheep, my kids get super excited. All of these make great opportunities for photography.
Along with visiting the farms, in the fall most of them offer pumpkins. There are tractor rides to pumpkin patches, and all kinds of pumpkins to take home and carve or decorate. Getting pictures of them looking for their perfect pumpkin (and then trying to lift the one they think is their must-have pick) is one of our staples for fall pictures, and then with them carving or painting their pumpkins.
Going out apple picking is another one of our fall traditions. Letting them pick their own apples and enjoy the results of their work is always entertaining. Watching how they figure out a strategy of skipping the easy to pick apple and going for the one then need to reach for, which almost always results with them losing their balance and falling over when the apple finally gives makes for some great shots.
We are lucky in that we have a lot of great parks that offer hiking and fishing, and great views of the fall colors. Without the brutal summer heat and sun, everyone is much happier to stay outside longer and enjoy the outdoors. With the leaves on the ground, little ones have a lot to explore and crunch around in, and older kids can examine all the changes in the environment.
Of course, Halloween usually steals the show for fall pictures. Dressing up, parades, trick-or-treating all have parents whipping out their cameras to get a few photos. Here’s a great opportunity to go the extra mile and set up a photo scene at a Halloween party. In this family photo, my wife and her friends put together a photo area that ended up being a big hit at the party. A cheap black sheet and a couple props from the craft store, and all the families got great halloween pictures.
Another great opportunity for pictures is Thanksgiving – you can get pictures of the kids helping with meal prep, setting the table, and decorating the house. You also have an opportunity to get those pictures with relatives they don’t get to see very often. These pictures may not seem so important now, but later in life they will have more meaning to all of you. So don’t be afraid to jump in and take pictures of family. It only takes a second, and it will be worth it.
What are your favorite fall picture opportunities? Let us know in the comments!