Today, I negotiated a brief but wonderful back carry! 26 weeks is getting too pregnant to carry her in arms along with all our stuff. I’m just exhausted All The Time. She really quite enjoyed it once she was up, but still refused a carry later on in the day. It’s a work in progress!
We went to a little suburb of Nottingham called Arnold to visit a baby cafe called the Milk Lounge. It’s geared around young families, with lots of high chairs, good changing facilities, baby (and parent!) friendly snacks and drinks and, crucially, a little play area!
It’s more for the younger end of young families, based on the size of play area. Aeryn still really liked it, though! They do lots of events through the week such as music groups and mum and baby pilates and so forth, but we just went for a couple of hours to see if it was our sort of thing. Well, Aeryn thought the tiny shopping trolleys were the best thing ever and asked to go back several times this evening, so I guess that answers that question!
They also have a sensory room for hire, though we didn’t get a chance to check it out. Next time, though!
The highlights for me were twofold. Firstly, I was able to get an almond milk latte and a dairy free cake. Any cafe that has non-dairy milk that isn’t soya goes very high up my list of desirable locations to visit! Basically my sole reason for frequenting Starbucks ever is that they sell coconut milk drinks. A nursing toddler with a dairy allergy and soya intolerance really scuppers most of your coffee shop plans!
Also, while I’m not heavy into anti-GMO or similar, I know soy isn’t exactly the greatest product to consume in great quantity anyway and tends to be swimming in pesticides. Even if we can challenge her allergies and get her back onto soy at least, I’ll still prefer that third choice. But so few coffee shops offer one!
My second highlight was the viewscreen of the play area. While I didn’t actually need it as she was the only child playing at the time we went and my table was next to the toys, I love that next time we go if I’m seated further away or it’s busy, I can check how she’s doing without interference unless she needs me.
It’s those tiny chances to foster some independence wihout compromising safety or seeing how she interacts wihout adult guidance or even just the chance to sit and drink my coffee still warm without guilt that I might be missing something important that I really love.
The whole thing has clearly been planned with kids in mind, rather than a pile of toys shoved in as an afterthought.
We’ll definitely be back to visit again and also check out the rest of Arnold. Plus, they are opening a new branch in Beeston in six weeks, so we’ll be trying that, too, as we are more familiar with that side of town.
So glad we gave it a go!