I wish when I was with my kids, I could just focus on them, but it's just not realistic. Work comes in and sometimes it's urgent. I'll shout-out how completely unsustainable this is for any working parent, and I'm honestly still processing how I feel about it all, while trying to keep the house and children vaguely under control, while building two businesses. This summer's going to be tough, but we'll get through it.
Anyway - these are five of our go-to outside activities, that both my kids (one nearly 3, and one 5) will get into for at least 30-40 minutes WITH NO adult intervention. The combination of common activities is what makes these work for my kids.
It gives the kids a more uncommon perspective with familiar play and objects, with enough of a prompt and focus to get more invested in the activity.