Wednesday, January 16, 2013

What to do with a toddler in Des Moines

We figured out a long time ago that it just wouldn't do to stay at home all weekend long with Dexter.  He goes crazy, we go crazy. Cabin fever as they say. Summer isn't as bad since we can play outside and go to the park and the season seems to be teeming with activity, farmers markets, vacations, grill outs. But what do you do with your kid in the winter? Where do you take them when you want out of your 700 square foot house? Well, if you're us you just haul them around to various stores like Target and Hy-Vee and run a slew of boring errands. That worked for awhile but now we have on our hands a kid that would rather not be pushed around in a cart when there are open spaces to be discovered, shelves to be scaled and items to be manhandled.

If you're us you take them to the mall and when they start to fuss in their stroller at Scheel's you take them to the hunting section and point out all the "sleeping" animals. Yup, did that. Don't worry about it, buddy, it's like a really quiet zoo.

And if you're us, you also give in and finally walk into the lion's den that is the Jordan Creek PlayPlace on a Saturday and release your little one into the wild. He of course loves every minute of it.

Afterwards he was promptly and properly introduced to the hand sanitizer.

What else to do with a toddler though? I took to the internet and in my search I found a handful of activities  for toddlers during the weekdays which is lovely and all if you stay at home. But what about us office dwelling parents? Where should we go? What can we do during these cold winter months? Surely there's more for the toddlers of Des Moines than mall playplaces and sleeping zoos and pay and play places on the weekend.

My search landed us at the Des Moines Social Club where they do an event called Dance, Baby, Dance once a month. We went last Saturday and will probably go again since it meets all of Dexter's requirements-open room to dance and run, books, and organized group activities that you can just up and walk away from if you so desire (that's what's happening in the photo below). The kids were all preschool or younger so I would say these are definitely his people.

Plus, there's an empty lobby if you're just too cool for school to do storytime like the other kids. Which apparently, he is.


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