Kid’s Island

This morning we skipped our normal gym routine and went to check out a new play space that just opened, Kid’s Island.

Since I’ve started caring for 3 kids in the morning, I’ve been nervous about visiting new play spaces. If they are too big I won’t be able to comfortably watch all of them at the same time. IMG_5639

I’m pleased to say that this place was just the right size. They also did a lot of clever things I had not seen at other place spaces, or not always seen them.

You can see from the picture above, on the back wall behind Ben and Aaron there are bins and bins of toys, correctly labelled with all the parts in the boxes.

No matter how big the space, they all stick together anyway!

No matter how big the space, they all stick together anyway!

Also there were also helpful staff members called “play pals” circulating the room, interacting with the kids. They say in the website that parents can work on their computers carefree while the staff helps. It was the first time I visited a space and asked if I could run to the bathroom without dragging three kids with me. It seems like a small thing, but sometimes a small courtesy like that can make a huge difference to an overwhelmed mom.

My kids played with a lot of toys they had at home but never give a second glance to! Made me realize that organizing them in bins may not be the best way to utilize them. I should really pull different ones out every few days if I want to be great mom. Well, we’ll see. I’ll put it on the list of things I should be doing OVER AND ABOVE the things I’m already doing. Unfortunately, that list is already too long and includes things much more basic like brushing my hair or throwing away any stray goldfish I find on the floor instead of eating it.

The most unusual thing about this place is the huge sand box.

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On the wall you can’t see there are shelves of buckets, shovels and more. Even though this meant another room, it was not closed off and I could peer over the shelves and see everyone at once. If I only had one kid I could have saddled up to the bar with a coffee and relaxed even more…

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Midmorning one of the play pals had story time followed by an activity relating to the story. I was surprised to see Ben jumped at the chance to hear the story. In his pre-school class IMG_5658they could never get him to sit down for a book. I’m not sure, but I think the fact that it was optional and he CHOSE to do it was the reason.

The story today was the “The Three Little Pigs” and afterwards Ben made a brick house that he was very proud of.

And they serve food! You can eat it to the side of the main playroom. That means you can order and you’re kids can play while they wait, or play between bites! It was another nice luxury. They didn’t really have any adult meals but it’s probably for the best as I normally eat my entire meal AND all the kids leftovers anyway.

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Finally, they had an option to drop your kids at a 50 minute class while you got a spa treatment from next door, Wellness Nail Spa. They have a close circuit TV so you can watch them at all times. My friend Pam and I always talked about this as being a great concept. Now that her three kids are all in school there is finally a place that does it!

The price for one child is $12 for 2 hours, but they don’t enforce it unless it’s really busy. Each additional sibling is $10.

Because the space was so small I was able to chat easily with some other moms. I got some tips as to where the more manageable pay-to-pay spaces are in the city nowadays. Hopefully you’ll be seeing them here soon!

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