Going outside with your baby + toddler
When you have a baby and a toddler, getting outside and doing fun activities can be hard. One child wants to run and explore and get into everything, while the other needs held/carried/in a stroller. It can be exhausting to manage!
It’s easy to dread going out with your babies, it’s a lot of work! But getting outside and having some active fun in the sun is incredible for your health and mindset, even if it’s just 15 minutes!
Getting out the door with a baby and a toddler:
Getting out the door is your biggest hurdle, but you’ve got this!
Check everyone’s diapers, grab a snack for your toddler, throw a jacket and some shoes on everyone and get out the door! But don’t forget your stroller or a baby carrier unless you feel like toting a baby around without a break for the next hour.
What am I going to do outside with my baby and toddler?
We love unstructured playtime outside, but it does get boring sometimes. So below I’ve compiled a list of some of our favorite activities + some that I want to do but haven’t yet!
Spring Activities for Young Children
Spring activities feel a little more limited to me. Where we live the weather is often erratic, with a few warm days and a lot of cool rainy days. Here are some of the things we love to do though!
- Walks in the stroller: We do this allllll the time. I have a double stroller that I just strap both kids into and away we go! I keep it short, so my toddler doesn’t get bored; and then let her run around in our yard and explore while I follow her around with baby brother still in the stroller.
- Riding baby bikes/trikes in the driveway: My toddler loves anything with wheels, so baby bikes (the kind with 4 wheels that she can propel just by pushing w/ her legs) keep her busy for quite a while! We also love our Radio Flyer tricycle that has a detachable handle I can use to push her around.
- Toddler led walks/yard exploration: Strap baby into a baby carrier and let your toddler run and explore in the yard/park/wherever. My almost 2yo could spend the whole day happily just running around picking up sticks, playing in the dirt, and constantly asking me “what’s that?” Guide your child to learn boundaries, safety, etc. but supervise without hovering, to let them explore and wander within those boundaries.
- Yard Work: Last year when my toddler wasn’t even 1 yet, our favorite spring activity was yard work! Picking up sticks, mulching, etc.. I’d let her crawl around the yard nearby, or sit in a stroller or pack ‘n play watching me. I didn’t get my work done very quickly, but it was fun! And Brynlee loved riding in the wheelbarrow or “helping” by throwing tiny handfuls of mulch from the pile into a bucket.
Summer Activities with Babies and Toddlers
Summer is one of my favorite seasons. Warm sunny days, where even if it’s going to be a hot one, you can squeeze in some outdoor fun first thing in the morning!
Some of our favorite summer activities are:
- Kiddie pool/sprinkler/play with hose
- Beach play/sandbox
- Going to a 4-H/FFA fair to see all the animals
- Going to the park on playdates/swinging on a swingset
- Grilling and eating outside
- Exploring the farm and seeing all the animals at Grandma & Grandpa’s!
These activities are just a quick outline of what we like to do in the summer. Really though, our favorite thing is to just hang out outdoors with the people we love!
For just being outside and having fun, keeping outdoor toys and activities on hand will keep your toddler busy for ages! Some of our favorites are listed below.
Outdoor Toys & Activities for Young Children
- Baby bikes (propelled by feet), trike w/ handle
- Sidewalk Chalk
- Balls of any kind
- Baby Slide
- Child size yard tools: trowel, rake, shovel, etc.
- Beach bucket w/ shovel (my toddler loves to just carry a bucket around and fill it with twigs, acorns, and rocks… had to teach her not to pick up deer droppings!)
- Sticks, rocks, mud, acorns, dandelions
Being outside with yours kids is fun. Is it more work? Yes. Do I sometimes run in and out of the house 15 times before we have everything we need to be outside? Also yes. But it’s so worth it, and the kids love it!
You’ve got this, mama.