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5 Tips On Being Outside with Crawling Babies and Toddlers

Being outside with babies on the move can feel really stressful! Are they allergic to grass? Are they going to eat something poisonous? What if they get covered with ants?? Here are 5 tips to help get you and your crawling kiddos outside more confidently!

1) Remember that kids are part of nature

Getting kids outside is a good thing, they are part of it, and that’s where they thrive. There is research that shows that the lights, sights, and sounds of nature are a Goldilocks scenario for kids. It’s stimulating, but not too much. In many cultures, being outside in all weather is MUCH more normative. Shout out to me sister and me who were taking naps in our prams outside in the middle of Canadian winters!

2) Find your comfort zone... then grow it!

find a space you’re comfortable with and set gradually expanding limits as you discover what your crawler enjoys. Set a blanket on some grass to be home base. A sand box or pea stone can be a great place for them to hang out too!

3) Manage YOUR anxiety

What are you worried about exactly? Research those issues to see how concerned you really need to be. Maybe you’re worried about tick bites in the warmer seasons. There are some great tips on how to dress you and your toddler to minimize your risk. But eating dirt or sand? Even if it’s gross to us, it’s okay! It’s actually probably good for their immune system.

I for one have a super overblown fear of mosquitos and the viruses they carry. It has at times kept me inside when I wanted to be out. I’ve identified that fear, and I try to manage my anxiety by monitoring outbreaks like west nile or EEE so I can make informed decisions.

I also use mosquito repellant (as organic as I can but sometimes those bastards just need evasive tactics). But I try not to let my fears and feelings keep us from having a good time when in all likelihood the situation is perfectly safe.

4) Brainstorm solutions

My younger daughter was the kind of kid who put EVERYTHING in her mouth when we were outside. Ev. Ery. Thing. Acorns, pebbles, leaves, sand, sticks, rocks… MUSHROOMS. I was at my wits end and I asked an outdoorsy parents group online for advice. They recommended bringing crunchy veggies outside with us that she could munch on instead of all of the natural delicacies she was finding for herself.

I started bringing carrot sticks out with us that she could gnaw on and don’t ya know it, it was a GAME CHANGER. For every problem, there’s usually another parent with an ingenious solution.

5) Get them in gear that can get dirty

There is just 0% chance that kids are going to be outside and stay clean. When mine were at the super filthy crawling stage, I just had their “get dirty” play clothes that could get stained without me stressing. A tuffo muddy buddy for rainy, muddy, snowy days is awesome. Rain boots and jacket are nice.

No matter what obstacles you face to getting outside, there are ways to creatively meet them. I hope these tips help you get outside more confidently and have FUN!

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