Pool Noodle, Soccer Ball Kid’s Croquet

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 Pool Noodle Croquet

Ahh, the terrible dread thrill of finding new activities on the cheap to keep my kids busy all summer is rapidly filling my mind and consuming my free time and I am less than a week into summer break.  I generally only have a few requirements for activities: that they be relatively inexpensive, keep the kids busy for more than an hour at a time and are quick and easy so I can still accomplish my own tasks.  This pool noodle croquet definitely fulfilled those requirements and even one upped them…not only were the kids busy for far longer than an hour, but they were laughing and getting exercise all at the same time.  As my daughter, Grace, would tell me, “That’s a win-win.”


I bought six hollow pool noodles from my local dollar store along with some kabob sticks that were hiding out in their kitchen aisle.  Wooden dowels would also work well, but this saved me a trip to another store and a couple of bucks as well.  Using garden shears I cut my kabob sticks to about 8 inches long and pushed it right into the grass.  Set the pool noodle onto the kabob stick and make an arch.  Decide where you want the other kabob stick for the opposite end and push into the grass.


Put a few more in the ground at random intervals and you are all set up.  I threw a soccer ball into the mix, gave my kids some loose rules and let them go.  They loved it and even made up multiple different games to play!  Creativity, outdoor playtime, cooperation, teamwork…yep, all these things and more were happening for a mere $7 of supplies.  I had not even planned on sharing this tutorial, but I had so many neighbors come up and ask about it that I thought maybe someone else could benefit from it.

Here are my kiddos mid game: (Notice the fallen tree in the background?  My parents had been out of town caring for my sick grandfather when we had a nasty storm that took it out.  They had just gotten back into town the evening before these pics were taken.)


What are your go to games to keep your kids busy during the summer?


Linked to Practically Functional


  1. Melissa C. says:

    Oh my!! That is such a great idea! Of course I have an on looker who said; “Mom, I want to play that game.” I said well; “I don’t have the stuff right now.” His response, “Well, than get the stuff.”

  2. This is brilliant! We live in the city and have a relatively small yard but we could still easily pull this off. Going to try to get the supplies this week. Thank you so much!
    Lydia @ The Thrifty Frugal Mom recently posted…Target: Reusable Swim Diapers $7.50 eachMy Profile

  3. This is incredibly clever! I have a friend who teaches summer play at a school….am sharing this right now!
    Mary @Sweetwater Style recently posted…Peony Time At Sweetwater Plus a Trick You Need to Know!My Profile

  4. What a fun idea!

  5. Hi, Kristen! Visiting from the Haven Newbies Facebook group. I love this idea, and would like to do this for my kids! Looking forward to meeting you next week at Haven!
    Lauren @ Mom Home Guide recently posted…Summer Patio: Hot Shot InsecticidesMy Profile

  6. Fantastic idea. I Love to play Croquet and just over seeded an area in our pasture type area for Croquet for guidelines.
    Your style of Croquet will be such fun with the Grandkids. !!

  7. It’s a shame you don’t have a donate button! I’d certainly donate to this excellent blog!
    I suppose for now i’ll settle for bookmarking and adding your RSS
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    Nasser Furniture recently posted…Nasser FurnitureMy Profile


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