So you're either on maternity leave, returned to work, or a stay at home Mum. And now it's summer! The days are longer and you're loving this time of year with your baby.
Top Tips for Blissful Summer Days with your Children
Our own mums might remind us of what they use to do in the good old days, but truthfully, not much has changed since then if we just forget about the television, phones and tablets. When you’re young and the world is new, there’s a lot of entertainment to be found at home and in the garden.
Let you child or children roam around the house with you and if they’re old enough to help you with chores even better. We might walk by something every day, but a child's imagination has expertise at making more of what’s just in front of them. Here are some great FREE tips for enjoying those lazy summer days with your baby or child.
- One to one time is your greatest gift to your child - anything such as drawing, reading, play dough, painting, baking, washing up, singing, to more active things like ball games, yoga, swimming and bike riding. All your kid really wants is your attention. We might not be able to give them our attention all day, but set aside 30 minutes a day for an activity.
- Going for walks in your local area can be a lifesaver. Sometimes it's enough just to get out the front door and feel the sunshine. If you know the area well, you could make a flower/treasure/sea map and once all has been found or identified, perhaps the prize is an ice cream! Allow your younger child to enjoy carrying the treasure bag with all their findings.
- Explore light and dark with your baby: contrasts, leaves, textures. Make your own sensory baskets from things in your home and garden.
- Let the baby take outdoor naps in the fresh air - either on a blanket or in a pram. Then you can also take a siesta al fresco!
- Gardening - going on a mini beast adventure, planting seeds, or pulling out weeds are the kinds of things kids of any age enjoy. You can give them old tools and their 'own' area that you don't mind becoming a mud pit.
- Picnics - have breakfast outside and make it a picnic - a great way to start a lazy day (and less mess to worry about).
- Making dens - take a pile of sticks and some cloth and suddenly you've got a den to sit inside for shade and a story.
- Cardboard boxes - great for colouring, painting or building with. Put those Amazon boxes to good use!
- Going to the supermarket might raise your eyebrows when you have another pair of hands involved, but if they’re old enough, ask them to write a shopping list, using words or pictures. Perhaps your child would like to take a long their own shopping trolley or basket to put their items into
- Washing - toddlers can help with the household chores like loading the dishwasher and washing machine, hanging out clothes to dry and folding clothes. If you have a younger child, allow them to practice strengthening their pincer grip by pegging onto a piece of string or rope. Making a game out of the mundane can be the difference between a chore and fun memories.
- Picking wildflowers - you can make a daisy chain, smash them onto cloth with a hammer to make a flower print, make a pretty bouquet or press them in books.
- Taking the bus can be great fun for all ages, especially if you sit at the top of the bus! Train rides and boats rides are popular during the summer too depending on where you live.
- Trips to the library can often involve a whole morning or afternoon and you might want to wait for a rainy day for that one. Getting there, reading books, choosing books and perhaps even joining a sing-a-long group can be an adventure packed outing and more or less free.
- If you have a pet, you could have a grooming day. Maybe even bathing your dog and dressing them up!
- and, if you do manage to get the baby down for a nap - DON'T DO HOUSEWORK! Go out in the garden, read a book, or just relax. It's Summer, after all.
Don’t forget time is on your side during the summer holidays, so no need to rush!
Eat well, play well and sleep well...
Whatever you have planned, enjoy your summer breastfeeding mamas! And take some time for YOU. You deserve it.