Mastering the Kid/Baby Combo Outing

Pier 6

The path through Pier 6 park. Talia guides Harper while Alton sweats on my chest, never being photographed.

Forget everything I said about the importance of white space in the day of the wee. Harper’s painstakingly giving up her nap, and oh but the days are long when a 2-year-old never sleeps, rendering herself too tired to really properly entertain herself in ways other than, oh, say, experimenting with opening the oven. I’ve been sort of torturing her with nonstop fun, with the goal of keeping her occupied and tiring her out so completely that bedtime’s a snap.

The real challenge is finding just the right outing for a 2-year-old and a 4-month-old — and I imagine this will only get more complicated as Alton learns to do annoying little brother things like “walk” and “have opinions.” So what are we supposed to do all day? (As Harper asks me every morning, “We going somewhere Mama? What we doing today?”)

The playground is pretty annoying when you have a sweaty babelet strapped to your chest and can’t follow the tot up onto treacherous play equipment.  A playdate at someone else’s place is pretty good, and you might even get to go pee by yourself. The pool is near impossible. A picnic in the park is tough – too many places for big kid to run. The Brooklyn Children’s Museum is a good option, since it’s so contained – you need a place where it’s really really hard for the older kid to harm herself while you’re distracted or nursing or sneaking a drink from your flask – but you have to pay and stuff.

This week’s real winner was Pier 6 — good thing, as I was developing a real complex about how we hadn’t been there because I was such a lazy and incompetent mother. We finally went yesterday, and you know, it’s not a bad baby/tot outing. I give it a B. The Water Lab is lovely, really engaging, pretty contained, and none of the water deep enough to be worrisome if the ambulatory child wanders off a bit. That said, Harper did suffer a minor head injury, refreshing her perpetual black eye, but that’s to expected from any really fun day.

Anyway, the park is beautiful, and I’m so thankful that our friends Kim and Talia escorted us there, since I was a bit intimidated by the idea of getting there. In the end bus ride was actually fun, too, if a little complex with the stroller/kid/baby combo. Harper and Talia were super into watching out the windows, and when we got off the bus at the park Harper literally wept.

Thank goodness for friends, really, who make it possible for us to go places other than our living room. Or the Y. No offense to the Y.

2 responses to “Mastering the Kid/Baby Combo Outing

  1. “…refreshing her perpetual black eye” made me laugh out loud, and we understand, because our 16-month-old adventuress is all colors of the rainbow as summer wears on. The more fun we have, the more spills she takes, and I think it’s darn healthy to see a kid covered in minor scrapes — it means they’re getting out. I really enjoy this sneak preview of having two kids, since we hope to grow our family eventually one day. Thanks for illuminating the path!

    • Oh man, the injuries! I remember that age as a very bruisey one. So stressfull for mama but so normal.

      Other moms with 2 kids keep telling me it gets easier…I choose to believe them. This part is fun but bonkers.

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