With leaves on the lawn, there are several ways to play with them. Instead of just raking them into a pile, why not use them to create “walls” for your very own leaf house?

Leaves on the lawn, September 2010
Yes, it's spring in the southern hemisphere, but the Australian eucalypts lose their leaves year-round, so after a day of strong breezes, our lawn was covered with them!

I have to warn you, much like the solid cubby house I built last week, this is a construction that calls for Mummy- or Daddy-strength. The children love to play in a leaf house, but actually constructing one themselves? … Perhaps in a couple years.

It’s not hard to do, though. I used a wide outdoor broom (simply because I couldn’t find our leaf rake) and swept the leaves into lines. Aisha carefully broke the walls into well-thought-out doorways. I think she liked the fact that she could change her mind and easily recreate the wall before making a new doorway somewhere else.

Brioni sitting in a leaf house, September 2010
Soon after the house was made, one room was designated as the bedroom, and Brioni sat in it "for some time to myself".

Walking a leaf house, September 2010
Watch your step! Aisha carefully lectured all visitors to her house on where the doorways were so we didn't inadvertently cross over any walls.

Brioni and Aisha in a leaf house, September 2010
Here's a wider of view of the girls' leaf house. Aisha is standing in her large "playroom".

You’ve got to watch out, though. Else you’ll find yourself constructing a leaf palace with many, many rooms instead of simple cottage.

The leaf house kept the girls happy outside for quite a while. I was happy to see them engaged in this imaginary play outside. Isn’t childhood fun?