We are still in the process of building a small patio outside our back doors after our extension a while ago, we still need to cut all the stones to fit around the edges but it is a work in progress. Now that we have a little patio and the weather has been warm we have had the back doors open a lot and the girls have taken to playing outside on the stones.
At the moment their favourite thing is a paint brush and a simple pot of water, they like to draw, write, make patterns and pictures as well as just colour in the stones. Such a simple activity, free and pretty much mess free too if you don't mind a 3 year old with a soggy dress.
We have also drawn on the stones with chalk and watered down paint which they then love to wash off with their watering can or leave until it rains, they then spend ages watching it disappear sitting by the window.
The Little ones love tea parties on 'the terrace' with water to pour in their teapots and cups and a biscuit or two for the babies, it keeps them occupied for ages while I feed Little 3.
While these things are all fun and keep them entertained they are educational too. Little 2 and I had quite a long and interesting conversation about evaporation and the rain cycle on the day these pictures were taken. She was a little cross that the pictures she had painted were drying faster than she could finish them and wanted me to explain why.