Babies are such a blessing…and exhausting, frustrating and at times unpredictable. When I was a new mom I found it really helped to make sure I got OUT of the house everyday, even if “out” meant sitting on the my front steps watching the world go by. Being stuck in the house day after day isn’t good for anyone! This is a great time to join a mom support group and find moms nearby to hang out with. Start a playgroup! You can also use the website seeMOMMYrun to start or join a running or walking group.
Here are some ideas of where to take your little one (in East Memphis and nearby) when you’re tired of walks and errands, since watching your child crawl on icky floors isn’t high on any mom’s list.
Visit a playground (mom favorites here) or go for a stroller walk indoors if the weather is bad.
The Booksellers at Laurelwood (aka Davis Kidd)
This is a fabulous bookstore for moms. They have a large kid area full of books and toys (and a place for moms to sit down), story time (11am on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and some Saturdays), WiFi, bathrooms, free local magazines at the door (like Memphis Parent), a cafe – Bronte Bistro, a box office for the Orpheum and even other random stuff to browse though. So you could grab a coffee, take a stroll through the store, enjoy story time, and even pick up a book or magazine to read during nap time. Definitely a win-win. EMM review
Memphis Library Branches
Some Memphis libraries offers storytimes. The Central Library has a great children’s area full of brightly colored “trees,” gigantic stuffed animals, murals, and a house that looks as if it’s made out of stained glass. Relax and read a few books. You’re already paying for this with your tax dollars, so you might as well enjoy this resource!
Germantown Community Library
The Germantown library has lots of storytimes geared towards very young children. Most require you to register a week in advance. Check the City of Germantown Calendar for listings and other details. Note – you don’t have to be a Germantown resident to register, just to check out books (non-residents can purchase a library card for $50)
Children’s Museum of Memphis
CMOM has a great exhibit that is good for crawlers – their 4 & Under area. There is a door (no escaping!) and a bathroom! Brilliant. There are places to crawl and toys to explore, plus places for you to sit down and relax for a few minutes. As your child gets older there are many things to do at CMOM – buy a membership so you can go for brief time periods and not feel like you’re wasting money.
Very young children will get a lot out of a walk though the zoo, and you’ll learn a few things too. Children under 2 are free, but a membership can still save you a lot of money, and set you up for as many walks as you’d like! Watch their calendar for special stroller outings.
An indoor play area in Germantown with jungle gyms, soft play structures, and imagination-inspiring equipment. Parents or caregivers are invited to either play with their children or sit back, relax, and enjoy free wi-fi in the café. EMM Review
Chuck E. Cheese arcade, indoor games, the Chuck E. Cheese in Cordova has a toddler play area
Lichterman Nature Museum
Visit at noon Tuesday through Saturday for Wild Lunch and meet the animals up close.
Take a Class
Music for Aardvarks
Midtown, East Memphis
Kids love music. Sometimes the music kids love drives parents batty (think Barney). Thankfully Music for Aardvarks doesn’t fall into this category. Dress comfortably as you’ll be jumping and even “wiggling your hips” along with Mr. Joe while he plays his guitar and sings. Classes are all-ages. Some kids participate, others just sit and stare, either way it’s fun and you’ll walk away smiling. Classes run for 10 weeks and are held in East Memphis at Shady Grove Presbyterian Church. EMM review
Kindermusik with Ms Annette & Friends
East Memphis, Cordova, Collierville, Germantown
Parent and child music classes for newborns to age 7, taught in various East Memphis and suburban locations
You can take a Spanish class with your 1+ year old in Cordova.
Check the MJCC website for info on upcoming classes (open to non-members). They offer Parent and Me classes geared towards the under two-year-old kids.
Parent and Peanut
Kid’s Play, Germantown
A 30-minute class for kids ages 8 weeks to 15 months and a parent/caregiver. Advanced registration is required, but you can sign up for one class or a package.
Beth Shalom Synagogue
Songs, stories and Jewish fun for caregivers and children up to age 4. Suggested donation $5/session. This program runs during the school year, check their calendar for dates.
Check the Swim Lessons post for indoor and outdoor Mommy & Me swim lesson options.
Mommy and me yoga, fitness and stroller classes
Mommy & Me
Thursdays at 10am, up to age 2. You will interact with your child by singing songs and participating in the activities offered by our wonderful teacher. Infants and toddlers acquire listening skills with rhymes and finger-plays, clap hands to the rhythms, and take turns ringing the welcome bell. A great way to meet new people and create friendships with other parents, many play dates have been arranged amongst those attending. An interactive class is the perfect introduction to a school setting for very young infants and toddlers. Temple Israel membership is not required. The class is free but registration is required, plus proof of immunization.