Keeping a toddler entertained is no easy task. My son has a interest (maybe closer to an obsession) with Mickey Mouse. Since quarantine started, his screen time has gotten out of hand. He will watch Mickey Mouse Clubhouse all day long if I let him. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with a little TV, especially if it makes your child happy but mine is seriously hooked.
So now that it’s getting warm and the outdoors seem so inviting, it’s time to start letting him burn off some of that pent-up energy. Here are 5 of our favorite summertime activities that are social distancing friendly.
Swimming is a classic summertime activity. If you have a full-sized swimming pool then that’s great but if you don’t, no worries. We use a small, inflatable swimming pool and it works just fine. In fact, it’s more relaxing for myself because he can get in and out of the pool as he pleases and I can sit right beside him in a lawn chair with an iced coffee in my hand while working on my “tan”. We like to blow some bubbles too. My son will try to catch them, and he thinks it is so funny when they land in the pool with him. Make sure to apply some sunblock and mosquito repellant as needed. A swim shirt and hat are also good options.
2. Lake days/ Beach days/ creek days
Yes, I said creek days.
Social distancing can still be abided in these areas. Especially if you go to an area that isn’t a tourist attraction. Our new favorite place is actually a creek with a big, sandy area. My son loves playing in the sand and walking into the water- which is only knee deep in most places. Make sure to watch for snakes and insects.
3. Hiking (or walking)
I know what you’re thinking. Hiking.. with a toddler? I’ll admit that it’s a bit of work if your toddler doesn’t want to walk so, I highly encourage an area that’s stroller accessible or investing in a toddler carrying backpack, or simply going for a walk instead. This can be very rewarding because exercise and adventure is so therapeutic. Plus, you will get to see some gorgeous scenery. Make sure to do your research on that destination and read the reviews to be aware of anything that the website doesn’t mention. We went to a gorgeous area recently but weren’t made aware that most of the area had flooded and was now mud. Our hike ended in an unavoidable muddy situation in which my son came home orange but still very happy.
I’ve never met a toddler that doesn’t love to swing. We got a hanging swing that can be indoors or outdoors, so we keep it on our porch. It’s so great when he is bored, and the weather isn’t on our side. He can swing and be in the shade or watch the rain. I highly recommend purchasing a toddler swing.
This is a good one for the older toddlers like my nephew who just turned 3. My son who is 20 months just wants to pick weeds and eat them. Gardening can be a great learning experience. They can put the seeds in the ground and cover them, water the plants and pick what grows. They will be so excited to see seeds that they planted start blooming.
I hope you try some of these and have a ton of fun while staying safe.