What to do?

I just thought as my kids got older, we’d be able to go more places together. But now that no one wants to sit in a stroller or a shopping cart, my outings have been limited, once again, to playgrounds or playgroups.

Yesterday’s outing to the National Zoo was the final straw for outings with both kids, unless I can get my husband to come along with us. (Which is almost impossible due to his work schedule.) The past week we’ve had disaster at the farm, Target, multiple grocery stores and the mall. It was not until the zoo that I realized what the problem was: one toddler defying the stroller + one preschooler not listening = disaster for all.

So where does that leave me now? I have two mornings a week with no children. That leaves me four hours a week to run errands. Ok, that should be sufficient. But then what activities am I left to do with my kids where they don’t need a leash. We’ve tried taking nature walks, inevitably one darts ahead and the other lags behind enough that I’m standing in the middle 20 feet from both. Museums don’t work anymore because Anna wants to climb on everything that she shouldn’t and that leaves us in temper tantrum central. (Why does Northern Virginia/DC not have a Children’s Museum?)

The farm doesn’t seem to work anymore. I look away for a second as I watch Anna stick her hand in the chicken coop and get pecked on the hand or see her trying to scare a cow with her shrill scream. Even places like Target and the mall that were my back up activities have turned into nightmares as children dangle from or parachute off carts.

I feel as though I’m back to my early days of having a baby where the only safe place was a confined area fully baby proofed. (Again, why does this area not have an indoor playground for the hot/cold/rainy days?) Please, I need suggestions for outings with a three- and two-year old where no one will get hurt, including me.


kim said...

The Wee Play open time on Wednesday afternoons are safe and packed with lots to do - just pricey. Same with all those indoor gym places (but worth it in the bad weather/winter).

Guess we all just need to schedule more regular PGs, huh? *sigh* At least they're free...

Anonymous said...

I've got 2 & 3 year olds 15 months apart. We frequent a gymnastics center -- not one of the commercial smallfry gym franchises. This is a training gym but they do have preschool classes. Until this year, we were able to do Mommy and Me (free play) very cheaply because children under 14 months attended free with the older sib, and then there was a discount after the first 2 classes per family of 50%. It's still a great place and now they are in structured classes together two days a week.

One word: RAZOR SCOOTER. Ok, that's two. Not the kiddie razor, but try your kids on some regular Razor A scooters and get a Razor Pro for yourself. You may be surprised how fast they move onto two wheels. We are actually have both kids on two-wheel bikes now too, so I can take the kids on outings to restaurants, concerts, etc. on either the scooter or the bikes. And if it gets dark, we can put everything on the MARTA bus to go home. For safe places to turn everyone loose, look at parks with basketball courts and college campuses.

We also spend a lot of time at the pools.

Good luck and feel free to contact me -- I also have a girlfriend in my area who had 3 kids under 3 (no twins). Everyone does things differently & it all seems to work.