Babysitting Stories · General Ramblings

Things To Do Around Toronto With A 1-Year-Old

I’m sitting here typing this in the dark – the electricians are here to upgrade the amperage in Glo-Worm’s house and thankfully, my computer still has a lot of juice left in it, and my iPhone tethers (thank goodness for technology!). It’s loud and I keep casting an anxious ear up to Glo-Worm’s room to listen for her cries, but so far, so good. Maybe she’s finally learned to sleep through noise? Or maybe she’s just tired. Either way, we don’t have most of our amenities today, so we’re going to have to find other things to do. Luckily, we live in a big city with a lot of stuff to go to and do, so here are a few of my favourite things to do with a 15-month-old:

1. Ontario Early Years Centres: These are number one in my book. They’re wonderful free little drop-in centres that are set up around the province for kids ages 0-5 years. They have toys, games, and activities for all ages of kids. Glo-Worm loves the circle time and singing – she really gets dancing and clapping her hands! She also loves all the toys that aren’t hers, and of course, the friends we meet. We have several wonderful friends at the EYC that she gets excited to see and play with. We can easily kill two hours here – she often doesn’t want to leave!

2. Playdates: When the EYC is closed, sometimes we have playdates with other friends. Mostly they come to our house, but it’s nice to let the kids play together while we chat over a cup of coffee and get some adult conversation in. We won’t be having playdates today, but we might be visiting a neighbour to kill some time.

3. Going for long, long walks: Glo-Worm is a stroller baby. This means she’s happy to sit as long as she has something in her hands. I love to explore Toronto this way – we’ve walked all over Dovercourt Village and up to Christie station. There are cool coffee shops to duck into when I need a drink or a rest, and lots of parks around to take Glo-Worm on the swings. She still doesn’t walk, so we can’t play for long because she crawls around and picks up things she shouldn’t, but walking is a great way to get exercise in and relax.

4. The Children’s Section of the local library: The Toronto libraries are extremely good with accommodating young children. Their children’s sections are set up for kids of all ages. Glo-Worm loves to crawl around madly between the stacks and meet new friends. We often meet many other parents and kids there who are happy to play and read books. She won’t sit long for a book, but she does like to touch them, pull them out of the shelves, and put them back. It’s a great way to kill a few hours – she keeps finding things that don’t make her bored!

5. The mall: On rainy days, we walk around the mall, and sometimes I take Glo-Worm to our local Toys R’ Us to look and touch the new toys. She loves to crawl around and find the singing and light-up toys to play with. She’s also very good with sitting in the stroller if I choose to duck into stores that I’m interested in! This can kill an easy hour or so.

Unfortunately, the one thing Glo-Worm won’t do is sleep in the stroller, so we do need to go home for naps. We don’t go on the subway, either, because they’re not really accessible to strollers in our area and Glo-Worm still naps twice a day, so any outings we have would need to be cut short. But when she’s older, I’d be glad to take her out on a Saturday to the Royal Ontario Museum, Art Gallery of Ontario, or Eaton’s Centre. One of my favourite places to go is the Toronto Harbourfront, and I’d love to take her there someday.

What do you like to do with your kids around your city?


3 thoughts on “Things To Do Around Toronto With A 1-Year-Old

  1. Nice article.. I also have the same place in my list except for the stroller comfy part 🙂 aashritha barely likes to sit in the stroller as its her time to run and explore the places herself.. In fact she was so desperate to visit the park yesterday that I had to put her in the swing for a few minutes before I could convince her that it’s really cold to be swinging so fast.. As such there was nobody else in the park then, wonder how other parents manage their toddlers indoor!

    Anyways, Thanks for sharing your thoughts and inspiring to put down mine.

  2. Riverdale Farm is a big one in our books! Also, we bought memberships to the ROM and AGO because they have fantastic play areas that are great for kids of all ages. Not only that, but Theo will happily kill and hour or two running around the exhibits at the ROM, point out all of his favourite animals and objects and pressing the buttons for the interactive features. We also love kid-oriented cafés like Lil Bean N Green and Playful Grounds. During the summer we frequented the free splash pads and wading pools at local parks.

  3. What a fun list for kids. I love taking my own children to the local toy shop, just to look. They understand that we’re not buying anything so they’re happy to just play (but sometimes I cave and buy a little something). You sound like an amazing nanny — those parents are lucky to have you!

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