We have been so blessed this spring and summer with beautiful weather that allowed us to get outside as much as we could. We spent a lot of time at Granville Island, went camping, played tourist in the city, and of course hit the beaches. There are so many things to do, at a low cost when the weather is cooperating – but what about when fall and winter hit?
Having a young baby at home, I was pretty much dreading the rainy season. Our apartment isn’t the biggest, and I know I get a little stir crazy when I have been cooped up for a couple of days. There are so many great things that come during the last few months of the year like Thanksgiving, Halloween, my Birthday, and the Christmas Holidays – and those are all fine and dandy – and I cannot wait for them all…
However, It is the day to day Monday to Friday jam when Michael is at work and it is just Marlow and I that I struggle with. What the heck are we going to do every day to keep ourselves sane?!
Living in Vancouver, there has to be things for moms to do to get out of the house when it is cold outside. I knew there had to be. So I did my research and created a list!
Things To Do When It’s Cold Outside:
Hit the Local Library
Vancouver Public Libraries have something called “BabyTime”. BabyTime is recommended for newborns up to 18 months of age. It includes songs, stories, rhymes, bouncing, finger plays, and games. Each branch hosts this on different days and times – Great! If you are really stuck with nowhere to go and need to get out of the house – go to a different location!
They also have something called “Baby Welcome”. This is run at each location as a “meet the parents” event. You will meet other parents with newborns in your area, get your baby a library card, and a tour. This is a great event to connect with parents in your area and build that support network.
If you have older children that are not quite at school age yet – check the Vancouver Public Library website for other programs for preschool, families, and toddlers.
Go for a dip
There are tons of indoor pools in this city, and they all have drop in swim times! The cost is minimal for adults, and babies under 2 are FREE! (bonus!) Hit up a couple in your area and find your favourite spot to take your little for a dip. Going during the week shouldn’t be too busy with school back in session!
Depending on the age of your baby, you could register them for swimming lessons! You can do this easily online, at the pool of your choosing. There is a fee of course, but for me, having something marked down on the calendar is a surefire way to make sure I get out of the house!
Check out your local community centre. They have a huge array of activities for babies and families. The WestEnd location in particular has baby playtime 6 days a week. The cost for this is $2.75.
If you are looking for something without your baby – some locations do have childminding that you can take advantage of while you work up a sweat at the gym!
There are 7 neighbourhood houses withing Vancouver. Each different location hosts different groups for parents with children. Mama & Papa Goose, and family drop in time are among the two most popular. Contact your local house to get sign up information. There is a $50 membership fee, however, you can apply for subsidy if you are a low income family.
Each locations hosts a different array of activities, and support. Programs in multiple languages are also included!
Though the adult fee is $25.00, kids under 3 are FREE! Science World has what is called the “Wonder Gallery”. This a space for children aged 0-5. There is over 3,300 square feet of space to explore, learn, and play.
They also have private nursing rooms for mothers, and child side washrooms for those potty training.
Circus Play Cafe
Located at Commercial and 12th Ave the Circus Play Cafe offers play space for ages 0-5. Babies under 6 months are free, and 6 months to 1 year is $6.00 for all day admission. This is a strictly nut free environment, so would be a great space for families with allergies.
They also offer baby and caregiver yoga classes, baby sign language classes, nutrition workshops, sleep workshops, and baby CPR training. This is for a fee, but they are all quite affordable.
Movies for Mommies
The Dunbar Theatre offers “Movies for Mommies” (and daddies of course). They play movies that you can bring your babies to on alternating Wednesdays at 12 noon. The cost for a ticket is under $15.00 and babies 0-12 months are free! There is also parking available if you are driving to this location.
Go to the Mall
If you are still stuck for somewhere to go you can always head to the mall. Strap baby in a stroller and do some laps! Free exercise! Unless you buy something of course. Malls have coffee shops, places to eat, washrooms and nursing rooms – everything you need for an afternoon out of the house. Grab a friend and go together!
There really is a ton of stuff to do when it’s cold outside, I hope this list helps you mamas and gives you some ideas! I will definitely be taking advantage of all of these places in the near future.
If there is anything you have found that you enjoy doing during the colder months – PLEASE leave a comment below! The more suggestions the better!