Tag Archives: free

Free Fun

1 Aug

Seattle Public Library

Reading groups, toddler time, Begin With Books and more! The Central (aka downtown) Branch is a great place to nurse and/or change a diaper.

Seattle Parks Department Community Centers

Many community centers offer indoor play times, perfect for both rainy days and those (rare) times when we need to seek air conditioning in Seattle. Also ideal for families with multiple kids–toddlers can burn off steam while the baby sleeps. Summer schedule here.

Seattle Center

Getting there can be half the fun–who doesn’t love the Monorail? Be sure to carry cash–no cards accepted for Monorail rides. Lots of places for indoor & outdoor play, including the International Fountain and a great fountain/pool near McCaw Hall. Changing tables in multiple bathrooms.

Parks

A Year Of Seattle Parks chronicles one mom’s experiences exploring our awesome outdoors. Wherever you live in Seattle, you’re not more than a mile away from a park. Explore!

Where do you go to have fun with your little one without breaking the bank?

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Parties, potlucks, and play dates

8 Nov

Stay in touch with your friends.

Invite people over–even when your house is a mess and you have no food. You can always order in. True friends will understand if you ask them to pick up take out or grab a bottle of wine on the way over.   When people ask you to bring the baby over, take them up on it. Always say yes to invitations and don’t worry about being a little late, not having a hostess gift or perhaps having not showered. Friends understand.

People with kids seem like a logical choice for spending time around your little one, but don’t forget those in your life who don’t have kids in the house. Your life has changed, and maybe it seems all you talk/think about is your child, but spending social time with other adults helps you connect with other parts of your identity.

Babies are great ice breakers.

We live in Beacon Hill, an incredibly diverse neighborhood currently experiencing a baby boom. There are 3 babies under one year on our block and at least 20 kids under 5 in a half-mile radius. Since the baby was born, we’ve  met lots of new friends and had the opportunity to pass around baby clothes and gear. We’ve also met baby sitters and learned survival tips from seasoned parenting veterans. When you see someone with a small child in tow, smile and introduce yourself.

It’s not cheating to order online

Would you like to host a play date or holiday party but you’re overwhelmed by the idea of shopping? Place an order with Amazon Fresh while the menu is fresh on your mind (or monitor) and it will be delivered to your door on the day of your choice.  If you plan to be home during the delivery, you can even order beer or wine.  I’ve pre-ordered my Thanksgiving items to be delivered the Monday before Thanksgiving, giving me plenty of time to realize what I’ve forgotten.

Regular scheduled deliveries have been a life saver for essentials like coffee, baby wipes, and other items we can’t go without. Every Wednesday morning, grocery essentials appear like magic on the porch. For the critters, we have a monthly delivery from Smiley Dog , a friendly local business that delivers high quality pet supplies–never run out of cat litter again!

Thinking of holiday gifts? Gift certificates for deliveries make great gifts for new parents and busy people in general.

South Lake Union Park/Center for Wooden Boats

27 Sep

On Sunday 9/27, we struck out for the newly opened South Lake Union Park. We started on light rail to Westlake then walked over to the South Lake Union Trolley Streetcar stop a couple of blocks away.

The streetcar took us all the way to the new park, where we discovered the Fremont Sunday Ice Cream cruise (an adventure for another day) and explored the Center for Wooden Boats display boats. Visitors are encouraged to climb aboard the Arthur Foss, an historic tugboat. There’s even a working head (toilet) for toddler emergencies!

There’s lots to see and plenty of activities for older kids and adults. Baby enjoyed people watching, climbing in and out of the boat, and being outside. Parents enjoyed the views.

Great views, gently sloped grassy knolls, and lots of footpaths in this park. No toys, but if your little ones absolutely must have a slide there’s a small play area nearby.

At a glance:

Open Hours: park is open during the day
Cost: Free! Center for Wooden Boats and cruises charge and/or request donations for their services
Fun for parents? yes
Fun for kids? all ages
Caution–as the name suggests, South Lake Union Park is near water. Watch kids carefully.
Activities available: tours, walking, boat rental, cruises
Food/drink available: none in park, nearby restaurants
Restrooms/changing table: public restrooms in the Armory; emergency bathroom available on the Arthur Foss
Accessible via transit? yes
Parking nearby? There is a parking lot.