In my opinion, one of the biggest challenges of being a stay at home dad is finding enough fun activities to keep your little one (and you) entertained. Trendy places like Gymboree may be the latest craze, but they are also very expensive. Museums and zoos will occasionally offer discounts, but even those locales are not enough of a bargain to be considered for frequent visits. Lily and I both love to go to the park and spend time outdoors, but we live in Georgia; so I don’t have to tell you how hot it gets down here. After all, they don’t call it Hotlanta for nothing. So until the geniuses that design parks and playgrounds for a living discover the benefits of the shade tree, twenty minutes of outside playtime is about all my sweaty little kid can handle. Luckily, right next to the park is a wonderful, air-conditioned building that offers a wide range of kid friendly activities at no charge. It’s called the public library.
If you live in a big city, there are likely multiple locations within reasonable driving distance of your home. Our favorite branch location is less than two miles away, and it is open seven days a week from ten in the morning to eight at night. This is important, because if something comes up in the morning, Lily and I can always reschedule our visit for the afternoon.
While I am not one of those parents who believe every activity needs to be educational, the obvious benefit of going to the library is that your child is surrounded by books. Of course, there is more to do than read books at the library these days. Everything from storytimes, puppet shows, musical acts, and arts and crafts are offered throughout the year.
Apparently, a lot of parents feel the same way I do, because our local branch is always buzzing with activity. So if you haven’t been to the library lately, go check it out!