Social time is crucial for the whole family – and not just for your kids’ development, but also for your sanity! The only thing is that it can be tough to come up with play dates that allow the kids AND the moms to enjoy themselves.
Sure, you can invite a friend over for a play date at home, but that could mean dealing with a two-year-old who doesn’t want to share his toys or having the neighbor drop her kids off—leaving you to supervise alone. What you really need is to get out of the house and know that everyone will have an awesome time.
All moms know kids are full of surprises, so there’s no such thing as a perfect play date. But there are ways to soak in friend-filled fun for mom and kid that will keep everybody happy! Even better, our super suggestions require no cleaning of your own house before (or after) you play. So call up a mom pal or two and invite them out for a few hours. Chances are they’ll be as grateful to get out and about as you are.
Picnic in the Park
Nothing says warmer weather like dusting off the old picnic basket (or canvas sack full of whatever you can find in the pantry, like me). Find yourself and your friends a picnic table near the playground or claim a shady patch of grass to throw down your blanket. Bring plenty of food and some activities like bubbles, balls and chalk for the ultimate low-key play date.
Run at the Rec Center
When spring showers ruin your outdoor plans, check out your local recreational centers for a number of kid-friendly activities. Playgroups, drop-in art or gymnastics class, open basketball, community skating and holiday crafting are just a few of the mom- and kid-friendly play date offerings you might find at a rec center. Ask your mom friends for the inside scoop on their favorite things to do at the rec center.
Try a Trampoline Park
Trampoline parks are the fun and bouncy way to get your play date on. Ideal for ages 2 and up, trampoline parks are an active, energizing play date destination. Take a break from bouncing to chat with other moms while knowing your kids are safe and secure on the trampoline court.
Visit a Museum
The local children’s museum is a great standby, but a new experience will undoubtedly spark the kids’ interest. Set off to a nearby art, history or nature museum. The new experience will keep your kids busy enough that you may have even have time to chat with your mom friends while you stroll.
A Day at the Zoo
The zoo is the perfect place to get in lots of good, quality social time for Mama Bear and her cubs. Spend the whole day with friends by planning enough time for leisurely walking and a packed lunch.
Find the Hidden Gem
Chances are your community has at least one or two kid-friendly spots you’ve never even heard of, let alone visited. Ask around on Facebook groups or meet-ups to see if any other moms with kids of similar ages have suggestions for exciting new outings.
Some examples may include a playground equipment showroom that opens up to the public for play, a jazzy coffee shop with play space (and tolerance) for kids or a unique park just outside the city limits. Don’t be afraid to ask around and try something new.