Our world is facing scary and unprecedented times with concerns of the rapid spread of the COVID-19 virus.

Social distancing, school closures, toilet paper hoarding, canceling both major and minor events, and a new genre of internet memes are the new norm across the world.

Many of us are trying to stay as positive as possible during these difficult times.

coronavirus child care

I have seen so many examples of kindness, caring, and compassion all around.

  • More door-holding so the next person doesn’t have to touch the door.
  • Offers to donate food and supplies to those who can’t afford to buy extras.
  • Offers by parents to other parents to swap child care in small groups.

The list goes on and on, and I’m sure this is only the beginning. Thanks to everyone who is in a position to donate, help, and “extend a hand” to those who are in need.

With schools across the United States ordered closed, many parents and care providers are working hard to figure out how they can keep kids busy with academic activities to maintain some form of a regular, structured learning schedule each day.

Pro Tip: Don’t let planning this be too much of a stress on you!  (There are plenty of other things we have no control over presently that we are already stressed about, right?!). It doesn’t have to be all math, science, and history – though there are plenty of ways to make those subject matters enjoyable.

  • Bring back the study of home economics with cooking, sewing, nutrition, or money management lessons.
  • Let your kids choose some fun “electives” like music, YouTube Art, or online coding projects.
  • Go out on a family bike ride, hike, or a trip to the beach for physical education and a biology lesson in one!  
  • A lot of learning happens during unstructured play time, too!

free educational resources

There have been so many great, creative and in some cases free educational resources popping up in light of this extended school closure.

While I know this list is not comprehensive, I thought it would be a good idea to try to put some of these in one place to help parents and nannies with ideas to keep school-aged kids busy while they are at home.

Continue reading “Coronavirus Outbreak: Free Educational Resources”

 

During the past week, I have been speaking with members about how the CareCalendar has been working for them. Several members all had the same fantastic idea:

“Could we use the CareCalendar to set up playdates/meetups?”

Yes! That’s a great suggestion and today we launched two new event categories for the CareCalendar: City of Seattle – Playdates and East King County – Playdates.

If you would like to find other parents and/or care providers that are looking to set up playdates, simply visit the CareCalendar by clicking here.

Then, click on All Event Categories and select either “City of Seattle – Playdates” or “East King County – Playdates”. Browse the different playdate postings and if you see one of interest, direct message the other member and set it up!

carecalendar playdates

Or you can post your own playdate by clicking on the pink Add Child Care Event button and then selecting either the City of Seattle – Playdates or East King County – Playdates category.

If members find this new feature useful, we will expand it to the North King County, South King County, Pierce County and Snohomish County areas.

How is the CareCalendar working for you? Do you have a feature idea you’d like to see us implement? Send me an email and let me know!

P.S. Check out this great article about the importance of playdates from CloudMom by clicking here!

 

 

There is so much to love about the holidays in the Seattle area!

We love finding new ways to create lasting memories and also begin new traditions each year, or find new and unique shops for finding that perfect gift. Some are nice to check out a time or two, and some have become favorite outings or shops that my family looks forward visiting to annually.

This year, I chatted with dozens of NPC members, friends, and neighbors to come up with Seattle’s FAVORITE Holiday Things. I wanted to hear about the traditions, shops, events, and activities that people enjoy this time of year.

So, what are Seattle’s Favorite Holiday Things? Here is what Seattle residents are buzzing about this year:

Favorite Thing #1: Fun with Trains…and Boats!
Santa Train out of Snoqualmie

The Santa Train has been a favorite tradition for families in the area since 1969. Hop on the train at the North Bend Depot for a quaint ride to Snoqualmie. While there, check out the Snoqualmie Depot for a visit with Santa Claus. Our family has gone before and it’s really fun! Enjoy cookies and cocoa or coffee on the Museum’s restored railway kitchen car and visit local shops and attractions before the train ride back to the North Bend Depot.

favorite holiday things Continue reading “Seattle’s Seven Favorite Holiday Things”

 

The husband takes our kids to Carkeek Park several times a week during the summer to run around, climb on the playground equipment, and dig in the sand. All of our little ones are fascinated by the freight, Sounder and Amtrak trains that go zooming past several times per day. So he came up with a novel idea: a train ride for the kids! Read on to hear about their adventure…

Link Light Rail

Laura is correct – our kids are absolutely fascinated by trains. So I decided to take them on a train ride! Given the fact that our twins are two years old and still require a nap in order to prevent insanity and meltdowns, my #1 goal with this train trip was to have it last no more than three hours “door to door”. Also, I didn’t want to spend an arm and a leg on tickets.

Unfortunately, we are a bit limited in our area with passenger heavy rail service. We’re stuck with either Amtrak or the Sound Transit Sounder which runs from Everett to Lakewood.

Amtrak

Proposed Route: Everett to Tacoma

Being a native of Seattle, I can recall from an early age hearing adults speak pretty poorly about Amtrak and its service. While I have never ridden an Amtrak train before, I do hear from friends/family that the service is much improved although you do need to be aware of delays and service interruptions.

My initial thought was, “Hey, let’s jump on an Amtrak train from Everett to Tacoma and then come back”. Yeah….that didn’t happen. Here’s why:

Continue reading “Riding Link Light Rail with the Kids: The Best $6.50 Spent!”

 

The weather has finally gotten the message that it’s SUMMER and we have been having some nice, HOT sunny days! Bring on the season of not having to make school lunches (yay!), and 85+ degree days with no air conditioning (boo)!

summertime activities

I’m really looking forward to getting out and about with the kids, but I also want to avoid getting stuck in a rut of doing the same handful of outings and activities each week. My kids definitely don’t need fancy (they can play for hours in a hole filled with water at the beach), but I want to expose them to a lot of different and enriching activities.

If you have found you’re stuck in a rut, are hearing “I’m bored!” several times a day, or maybe just need some additional summertime activities, please check out these tips below!

Continue reading “Six Tips to Avoid the Summertime “I’m Bored”!”

 

Updated: January 2020

Need a break from the rain? Looking for something new and unique to do indoors with the little ones?

With this list of OVER 200(!) indoor activities in the Puget Sound region, your kids will be able to run off some steam and you will never run out of ideas for things to do with them!

indoor kid activities

This map is great for parents and care providers who are new to our area. Please share!

Don’t forget that Nanny Parent Connection members get a discount at the Funtastic Playtorium! We just visited the Alderwood location last week and saved $5.00!

Blue icons are free activities and red icons are activities with a cost. 

If you are using a mobile device, use two fingers to move the map or zoom. Click any of the icons for more information and ENJOY!

Continue reading “The Complete Seattle Area Indoor Kid Activities Map”