05.10.2020

A SUMMER OF FUN + GAMES

Four moms x creating new adventures for kids

Image of summer of fun + games

Words: Leila Petersen | Images: Supplied

The most exciting and optimistic season is upon us! And for kids, even more so, as earlier sunrises and longer days mean extended playtime outdoors. Parents might find this time slightly more challenging, trying to think of fun and creative activities to keep their kids happily busy. Need a dose of inspiration? Meet Linda Mzamane, Juana Parathyrus, Tanya Clark Tiziani and Guiyani Monteiro – four moms who share their child-friendly tips, tricks and summer plans.

Image of Linda and Songo

How are you planning to spend the summer outdoors?

We will definitely be in the pool a lot this summer! I’d like to teach my son to be comfortable in the water, with lots of floaties and snacks like watermelon and popsicles. I’m hoping to be able to spend more quality time dining alfresco with our family after the long absence due to lockdown, as well.

What were your favourite games to play growing up and do you teach them to your child?

My favourite games as a kid involved making pretend tents and forts in the house. My son, who is nearly three, loves to do this and then he brings his favourite books and cushions to make it more comfy.

Which games do enjoy playing with your little one now?

We enjoy playing soccer and racing up and down the house pretending to be dinosaurs, as well as hide and seek.

What are some of the key summer wardrobe essentials for your child and why?

In summer, my son lives in elasticated, comfy and stretchy shorts. They make it easy for him to move and play around freely. He's recently discovered sunglasses and wears them every chance he gets, so we have a small collection going for him.

Image of Juana and Jack

How are you planning to spend the summer outdoors?

Jack loves the ocean, so we'll be spending some time at the beach. He recently got a new bicycle for his birthday, so we'll find some great spots for him to ride and explore on his bike. We also love going for a walk on the prom, getting ice cream and hitting up our local park for him to play.

What were your favourite games to play growing up and do you teach them to your child?

I don't remember specific games. I had a bit of an imagination and loved baking (aka making a mess with mud), so I allow Jack to get messy when the weather allows for it and he can play in the garden.

Which games do enjoy playing with your little one now?

It's more a case of what games he enjoys playing (I don't really get a say) and it mostly involves hide and seek, jumping in muddy puddles (thanks Peppa Pig) and playing catch.

What are some of the key summer wardrobe essentials for your child and why?

Good quality protective swimwear and hats are a must for me. Jack has a very fair complexion and burns easily, so I need clothing items that will give me peace of mind and are as safe as possible. A good pair of denim shorts that can be dressed up with a cute shirt or crew-neck tee is always handy. I am always on the hunt for great basic, plain cotton tees and shorts that he can wear to school. They need to be breathable and comfortable, but that if they get ruined, it’s not a problem. I'm also on the lookout for a lightweight jacket that is comfy and easy to wear, because you never know when it'll be cold in Cape Town – even in summer.

Image of Tanya, Ndzalama and Miyelani

How are you planning to spend the summer outdoors?

We love our summers and spend as much time outdoors as possible. Visiting wine farms, spending days at the beach and afternoon strolls around our neighbourhood are what we enjoy most. And if we’re home, you’ll find us having our meals out on the terrace with friends and lazing around the pool.

What were your favourite games to play growing up and do you teach them to your children?

I remember playing a lot of Scrabble and Ludo with my grandmother and I’ve got the kids addicted too. We spend hours trying to top each other’s scores! We spend a lot of time in the kitchen as a family, so every night it’s a little dance-off situation in the kitchen with music and the occasional karaoke moments. These are my fondest childhood memories and I try to keep them alive through my kids. It makes for great bonding sessions too.

Which games do enjoy playing with your kids now?

I don’t play many outdoor games, because my kids are way too athletic – and I’m not in my 20s anymore! While they enjoy backflips and somersaults, I spend time teaching them how to garden and grow their own veggies – just like my grandad did with me.

What are some of the key summer wardrobe essentials for your child and why?

We stick to minimal and simple summer fashion for the kids. Shorts and tees for lazing about in the house. My son is really into graphic tees, so you are almost guaranteed to find him wearing one. When it comes to my daughter, we need loads of options, as she changes about five times a day – there are usually lots of hot pants and crop tees in the mix. However, for luncheons or dinners, I like the kids in more formal summer outfits like slacks and a golf tee for my son and a pretty summer dress for my daughter.

Image of Guiyani + Dziwani

How are you planning to spend the summer outdoors?

When in Johannesburg, we love spending time in our garden and taking long walks in the neighbourhood at the end of the day. My son loves picnics and preparing for them, so we’re all very excited to get back into that now that the weather is warmer. We also can’t wait to head to Mozambique, where I'm from, and enjoy long Sunday lunches in the garden with my family, as well as some time by the Indian Ocean – we've missed it a lot.

What were your favourite games to play growing up and do you teach them to your child?

I'm the youngest and only girl, so I spent a lot of time playing on my own, creating imaginary worlds with my dolls or creating stories for myself for the day, and I remember loving those moments. I encourage my son, an only child (for now), to nurture his imagination and enjoy his solitude, even if it feels boring, because that’s where the magic happens. I also enjoy sitting outside and painting with him – it’s so calming for both of us.

Which games do enjoy playing with your child now?

Our current favourite is UNO. We play it almost every night and our son beats us most times and absolutely loves it. Another favourite is dance-offs – he is really into his music and dancing so we make it a fun family affair.

What are some of the key summer wardrobe essentials for your child and why?

I always get him a couple of shorts and T-shirts, generally in neutral colours so he can mix and match. They’re practical and easy for him to play in the whole day. He asked me for sunglasses the other day, so I'm guessing he’s got a special look planned.

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