Activities to Do with Babies

Parent Q&A

Baby/toddler activities NOT at 10 or 11 Jan 22, 2020 (4 responses below)
Good places to take newborn baby on outings? Mar 21, 2019 (11 responses below)
Fun classes for baby Aug 30, 2018 (6 responses below)
  • Baby/toddler activities NOT at 10 or 11

    (4 replies)

    Hi,

    I'd like to take my 11 month old son to library story times or other free or low-cost classes/activities, but they all conflict with his morning nap! Any suggestions for a 10:30am napper? It seems like everything I find starts at either 10 or 11. Or costs $20+ per session, which is more than I want to spend. We're in North Oakland so looking in Oakland/Berkeley/Emeryville.

    Thanks!

    I feel like I had the same issue for such a long time, and now that my kid naps at noon it seems like everything is at noon. Ugh. 
    But there are a couple of evening storytimes: 

    Berkeley Central library at 6:30 on Tuesdays (Ann plays like 17 instruments and is super sweet)

    OPL’s Dimond Branch has Pajama Storytime at 7, also on Tuesdays. I haven’t been to this one bc Berkeley is more convenient for us, but I’ve heard good things about it. 

    And this weekend there are some kid-friendly symphony performances at OPL’s main library, Saturday at 1:30 and 2:15

    When it’s warm again I also recommend the ECCL pool, which is very nice and has cheap ($5?) drop-in family swim times in the afternoons. Not exactly an organized activity, but very exciting for kids who like water.

    This happened to me too when my son young. I realized that the 11am activities are for older babies who nap around 1 or 2. Just wait a few months and the naps will readjust. Your baby will drop from 2 naps to 1, and that one nap will move a little later. This will free up your morning for activities. 

    There’s “baby rave” and other things at the Berkeley children’s theatre bactheatre.org. 

  • Good places to take newborn baby on outings?

    (11 replies)

    Hello! Can anyone recommend a good place in the east bay (Oakland, Berkeley, Alameda, Emeryville ideally) to take baby, where there are good breastfeeding spots and otherwise casual/supportive? I've dealt with one too many meltdowns with baby in a crowded coffee shop where there's hardly a chair to sit in to breastfeed, let alone space to swaddle her or do anything else. I don't care so much about bothering people with a crying baby, but i feel like in many places, I am not able to meet baby's needs as well as I would like to.

    I am looking for more places with comfy chairs, large enough space, casual setting, good places to change baby... The Nordstrom in Walnut creek has a wonderful large women's lounge and mother's room, and that's a good example of a place where if she needs feeding/a quiet place/somewhere I can lay her down, I know where to go. I don't mind breastfeeding in public, it's just that many casual restaurants have uncomfortable seating... or they're outdoor areas which aren't good when it's cold... et cetera. 

    Where did you take baby to get out of the house/when you were still learning to parent, that you felt had enough comfort/space/other resources for a parent with a baby?

    Thank you!

    I didn’t find a lot of places like that but two recommendations I would have are the baby brigade films on Thursday afternoons at the New Parkway theater and mommy and me yoga classes ( you get at least a little exercise and yoga bolsters are great improviser nursing pillows). I took a series at Then Comes Baby and did dropins at Nest. There are several other studios that offer that. I wish there were more cafes with couch seating around here! 

    There is Brezo in Point Richmond - they have kids corner with comfy armchair for BF and lots of toys that I used to district my little one while trying to eat. It's a bit far but it's the most kids/BF friendly brunch place with great food from all I've tried.

    This might a weird suggestion, but when I had an infant I took him to IKEA all the time, especially on rainy days when I still wanted to get out of the house. They’re so family-friendly, from priority parking, to changing areas, to free coffee for family card members if you’re so inclined. The cafe area is usually not crowded on weekdays, and we’d stroll around the aisles in his stroller or look at all the toys in bright Scandinavian colors in the kids section near the cafe. 

  • Fun classes for baby

    (6 replies)

    Hi. Im currently looking for classes to do with my 10 month old boy being music, swim etc. Are there any specific classes anyone can recommend? Id like to start getting him out more and socializing. Thanks so much! 

    Ali

    RE: Fun classes for baby ()

    Music Together class is great! And has lots of locations. My 20mo is on his 4th season. We did a swim class at El Cerrito over the summer he enjoyed too. I'm looking into a gymnastic option for him since he loves to be active, climbing etc. We did a baby Yoga class together when he was younger at Yogalam. Probably many good options around. For socializing there is also just the parks- Totland is good- and Rain or Shine is good too for rainy days drop in. Tons of kids around so just get out!

    RE: Fun classes for baby ()

    Music together classes at several locations in the east bay. I plan to start this fall. I’ve heard great things. https://eastbaymusictogether.yourvirtuoso.com/

    RE: Fun classes for baby ()

    Music together was fun with both my grandsons. 

Archived Q&A and Reviews


Looking for places to hang out with 5 month old during the day

2001

I'm looking for more places to take my 5-month-old on weekdays, especially afternoons, because I go buggy if we stay home all day. I've been to malls and the Emeryville public market, bookstores, the zoo, parks etc. With winter coming I'd like to get a bigger indoor repertoire. I need places where you can hang out at a table for a long time without being glared at, where changing the baby's diaper won't involve a long trek, and where there's enough going on that a fussy baby won't be the center of attention. Thoughts?


One of my favorite places to take my son -- babyhood through the present -- is the Steinhart Aquarium in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. Babies/kids LOVE marine life, and it is fun for mom and dad, too. There is just room after room of fish, penguins, etc. (There is a pretty awesome snack bar and gift shop/s, too.) Generally, it is pretty much a free to be you and me environment. There is even an Africa-themed baby/toddler play area, where you can really let your hair down. If you like it there and want to go often, the best bargain is the annual pass with unlimited visits. You may want to wrap it up there at around 3?, though, so you don't get trapped in traffic back to the East Bay.

-- When my son was an infant I would also take him to museums. This is more risky if your baby has a fit and there are some serious art-lovers around, but I was surprised at how often my son would look at everything and then fall into a nice Baby Bjorn sleep, allowing me to wander.... Museums usually seem to have great bathrooms and cafes.

-- In the East Bay, I like the Circus Pub on Kensington Circle (in Kensington), which is TOTALLY kid-friendly. You could have a nice shepherd's pie (for instance) while you play with your baby in the bona fide play area. There are always other parents and kids, so you could eat a meal and meet some nice folks.

-- In Marin, my favorite place is the Discovery Museum. Some of it is outdoors, but lots is indoors. Some of the stuff may be too old for your baby, but there is one building with sort of a waterbed play area, etc., that was perfect for my friend's twins recently.

-- If all of this sounds like too much traveling in rush hour, another thing you might consider is Kindergym, which I think? offers classes for babies.... I took Debra (sp?) Bonet's wonderful class in Albany, which was Wednesdays at 4 or so. I think classes are offered all over the East Bay, though. Both of us got exercise and to hang out with a nice group of kids and parents. Debra is a swell teacher, calm and patient, very creative with music and dance. Good luck and have fun!
Lynn