By Amnah Ibrahim, Disney Baby
Summer is almost here! Can you feel it? It's a time for relaxing, having fun, and making lasting memories. Your little one may not quite remember it all this year, but that's no reason not to make every outing a wondrous and magical experience. Check out this list of fun summer day trips to take with your babies and toddlers.
Farmer's market. Seize all the delicious and fresh summertime fruit that will now flood the stands! Point out all the different colors. Tantalize their taste buds with the yummy samples. Have your little one explore the different textures, from fuzzy peaches to smooth cherries. Listen to the sounds of street performers serenading the early morning market-goers. Above all, don't forget to stop and smell - and purchase! - the summertime blooms.
Zoo. What makes the zoo special in the summer? The animals splashing off in the water trying to cool down! Little ones will be delighted that their favorite animals enjoy "bath time" as much as they do.
Community pool/local water park. Take advantage of what your community has to offer. There is always a section of the pool or water park dedicated to little ones. It's a wonderful time for both you and your baby to cool off while having a great time. Go ahead and introduce yourself to other parents. Hello, summer play dates!
Beach. It's the quintessential summer outing! Sandcastles, waves, and seashells! So much good stuff to explore at the beach. If it's your little one's first time, it will be such an awesome experience... from the itty bitty sand grains between their itty bitty toes, to the water rolling up shore to wash it all away. Their first experience at the beach this summer will be the start of many more memories. Take home a shell as a memento.
Lake. No beach? No problem! Seek out a lake in your area. Lakes are a beautiful place to take little ones. The greenery of the surrounding trees, the gentle motion of the water, and the fresh air all make for a very calm and serene environment. Take a boat ride around the lake to give your little one a new perspective. Don't forget life jackets!
Outdoor festivals. With the start of summer, outdoor festivals spike, which includes everything from food, to music, and art! Explore a few of them this summer to make exciting memories. Who knows, maybe your toddler's love of asparagus will start at the asparagus festival?
State fair. Celebrate your state and summertime in one place! There's so much for a toddler to do! Pet the local farm animals. Dance to the music of local bands. Taste the home baked pies. Take home a small homemade craft. See the fireworks! A very full and very exciting day is to be had.
Fruit picking. Indulge your little one's love of a certain summer fruit by taking them to pick it themselves! What a fantastic learning experience to discover where their favorite fruit comes from and how it grows. Delight as your toddler eats to their heart's content. Make sure you take plenty home to create yummy new recipes for them to taste.
Hiking. Take advantage of warmer mornings and go out for a hike. Being in nature is very important for a child's development and sense of self. If your little one can walk, take them out of their stroller or carrier to let them explore and hike along with you. Take the time to discover the native plants. Point out any animals or bugs. Encourage touching rocks, tree trunks, and leaves. Chances are with the serenity of the location and the exercise from the hike, they'll nap like a champ back at home.
Library. Sometimes it's just too hot to go out, but too nice to stay in. Head to your local library to enjoy your toddler's favorite books, and the AC! Pick up summer-themed books about the beach, summer gardens, and the sun. Chances are, there will be many of other little ones like yours to play and read with.