When a mom stays at home with young children, there can be a sense of isolation and a feeling of loneliness, especially if she has always worked. This is especially true when a mom is away from family, perhaps in a new city or town.
It’s very important that mommies have a social connection with other like-minded moms, and can visit with them on fun outings with their active, challenging toddlers.
She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness. Her children arise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her. —Proverbs 31:27-28, KJV
Children need training in social situations to help them become friends and social little beings. The experience also teaches them how to react in different situations; to share, to be kind and generous, to love and be gentle. The Bible instructs us to “Train up a child in the way he should go, even when he is old he will not depart from it.”
Here are some great mommy / toddler outings that moms can enjoy along with their little ones or with a group of friends.
Pack a Picnic
Children love picnics and the opportunity to run and play, preferably with other children. These outings make perfect play dates with other families from your church community or those within your neighborhood. Children have the opportunity to share, laugh together, play, tussle and generally learn how to interact with other children.
Moms can plan the lunch menus and everyone can bring something to this occasion to keep costs down. Make sure there are sand boxes, swings (a playground) or other interesting activities nearby to burn off some toddler energy.
Take a Walk on the Wild Side
The zoo is a never-ending source of fascination for children. Seeing the animals from around the globe, marveling at the wonder of God’s creations and laughing at the antics of the monkeys and other animals can make for many wonderful memories.
The same can be said of a visit to a museum, whether a children’s or natural history museum. Children pick up and retain the most surprising facts. It’s always beneficial to have children draw pictures after any excursion of something special shared, learned or seen. Mother is usually a child’s first, and best, teacher.
Physical activities like swimming and visits to a local recreation center or neighborhood pool can open up the world for your child. Mommies can enjoy chatting with other parents while teaching their children to swim and respect the water. Playing water games enhances the experience, and where better to pretend that the waters are flooding Noah’s Ark and that you are safe inside with the animals? Children can pretend to be fish swimming or dolphins diving. It all makes for a wonderful learning experience, not to mention the benefit of exercise!
Be One with Nature
Seasonal nature walks at parks, through your neighborhood or at other favorite nature spots can show the wonder of God’s world. Mothers can teach children about the cycle of life, changes in humans and animals, by pointing out the changes in the leaves, the grass and the trees. Flowers blooming and dying, trees losing their leaves or blossoming, are a constant wonder to children. The tactile feel of the rain or snow, the changes in the seasons, are all special and unique learning experiences.
Visits to the library can also open up the world for children – a world of great literature, Bible stories, music from around the world and movies and books to snuggle up with and read on blustery days. Story time at a local library is a magical experience, with puppet shows, an animated librarian and other children joining in the finger games or songs. There may also be age-appropriate crafts or workshops offered where parents and children can get creative and learn new skills.
My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and foresake not the law of thy mother: For they shall be an ornament of grace unto thy head, and chains about thy neck. —Proverbs 1:8-9, KJV
Mommy is teacher, companion, friend and confidante. Toddlers learn how to interact with others through their mother’s influence; whether actual instruction, how mom treats others or what mom has to say about other people. When moms actively interact with others, genuinely showing love, kindness and caring, children learn to behave in the same way.