I’m lucky enough to live in a city that has programs for Moms and kids. When Anthony was a baby, I discovered Mommy Connections. Through Mommy Connections Saskatoon, I’ve taken both Mom and Baby and Mom and Tot classes. I’ve also done as many Mommy Connections events as I could. Including ones for parents only and parents and kids.
This Fall, I participated in a Mommy Connections Mom and Tot class as a Mom Ambassador. I’m grateful to have been given this opportunity. It was a lot of fun, and I was able to make new friends and try out new activities with Anthony. I did a Mom and Tot class at the beginning of this year in January as well. The great thing about these classes are there are so many different activities, and it’s different every time. Anthony is more outgoing (and a tad more rambunctious) than he was in January.
I’m going to go through the activities we did week by week.
September 7: Mom and Tot Dance (Ignite Danceworks Inc)
This was our very first class together. It was pretty chaotic. This is not criticism. It’s just what happens when lots of Mommas and Toddlers meet for the first time.
We were greeted by people we already know from other programs, and by others trying out the group for the first time. It was a great time for the kids to run around and meet one another, and for the moms to start talking.
The last time we took the classes, Anthony was a bit more clingy. This time he ran around like a crazy kid. He also ran right into other kids without a care in the world. I find it stressful sometimes to watch him go crazy. It’s hard to calm him down, and he really doesn’t have a concern about running into others or hitting. However, we are all moms in the group, and while I’m running around stopping him or apologizing to the person he has run into, people understand.
I have a toddler. We all do. There were kids crying. Kids laughing. Kids with crazy amounts of energy. Shy kids. Loud kids. Overwhelmed parents. Calm parents. Most importantly: a group of supportive women.
The group was facilitated by Amanda. In my opinion, she’s awesome. She’s mom of two. She is easy to talk to, super friendly, super nice, and knows what it’s like to parent crazy toddlers. (I say this with no judgement because I find my kid is the craziest.) We also have the fact that our partners work away from home in common. We both know what it’s like to be a solo parent for weeks at a time. She takes the time to talk to the mommas and meet the kiddos.
September 14: Salsa Tots (Little Hands and Me Parenting Network)
I really enjoyed this one, and I think my son would have really enjoyed it, but he was getting over a cold, and was a bit grumpy. Tanya from Little Hands and Me. We did some salsa dancing, parachute play, balloon fun, and more. Most of the kids seemed to have a blast. Anthony joined in for some of it, but was a bit more clingy than usual that day. By the way, Tanya is great. Check her out on Facebook or Instagram. She offers lots of classes. As you can see, he melted down about the time we brought out the parachute.
Jennie is there for most classes. She’s the Mommy Connections director in both Saskatoon and Regina. She also does Movies for Mommies. This is also my personal opinion, but I think Jennie is amazing. She does so much for so many moms, cares so much about all these moms, and she’s raising two amazing little girls. We wore matching shirts for this class, so we had to get a photo.
September 21: Gymnastics (Can Am Gymnastics)
I was REALLY looking forward to this one. I keep thinking that gymnastics will suit Anthony. Time to jump, run around, and have lots of fun. The kids all had a lot of fun, although some of them (including mine) just kind or ran around and did what they wanted. There were SO many different activities. I wanted to see him participate in the class, but he was too busy doing his own thing. That’s what happens with a toddler I guess. I think we are interested in Can Am Gymnastics in the future, but not quite yet. I want him to be able to follow directions a bit more, and WANT to learn from the instructor. There were so many fun things for the toddlers to do though, and the Mommas had a blast watching the toddlers.
We also had Mom and Tot photos taken by Kerry’s Photography. This is done with all Mommy Connections programs. She also takes photos while class is on.
September 28: Farm Tour (Lift Farm EAL)
Hands down, this was my favourite meet-up. I could go on and on about it. It was something for both the parents and the kids. I’ll admit, anything that involves animals is something I love. The kids could walk around and pet the animals. We went in groups, and went to see the different animals. The toddlers even got to sit on a horse, and it was amazing. I LOVED how much my kiddo giggled while on the horse. He just had a blast. Outside activities are definitely Anthony’s favourite. He could basically have played in the straw and dirt all day with or without the animals.
October 5: Pizza Making (Boston Pizza)
I wasn’t sure how this one would work, but it was well-organized by Boston Pizza and Jennie. It had all the right ingredients for a perfect outing. (See what I did there?)
They had booths for all the mommas to sit in, and brought the pizzas and ingredients to the tables for the tots to make pizzas. While we waited for the pizzas to cook, the Boston Pizza mascot came out to talk to the kiddos. Anthony wasn’t scared of it, which shocked me. It was a slower paced activity, but nice to sit down and talk with the people we were next to. It was an opportunity to learn more about some of the parents I hadn’t yet spoken to.
October 12: Splatter Painting (4cats Art Studio)
This was the only one I had done in my last Mom and Tot class. It’s a favourite. Mostly because my son LOVES painting and getting messy.
The kids listen to the instructions. They get to pick colours, and participate in the decisions. And they get to throw paint around. I don’t think Anthony won for messiest tot, but he did pretty great. We have an amazing piece of art by Anthony now.
There is a spot at the end that involves a balloon filled with paint. Anthony had fun with that one. He squeezed it way before he needed to.
Also, as an end note to this one, the clean up is easy as well. They line up for a sink with sponges and water, and it’s really quick and easy.
October 19: Music Together (We Move SK)
This one comes with a story, but first let me tell you how much fun it was! I will be looking into classes into the new year.
My son and I were having an off day before getting there. I had already cried once because I was really feeling like I was failing as a momma. I just felt like I wasn’t everything Anthony deserved.
I thought I had it under control when I got to the class. And then, I tried to hold my son when he was being a bit rammy. He got mad and slapped my face.
I’ll admit it. I was embarrassed. It felt like everybody saw it happen. I immediately picked him up and left the room. I wanted to calm him down, but also, I knew I was going to cry. We both cried, and then I went back in the room and cried some more. Both Jennie and Amanda checked on me to make sure we were doing okay.
Here’s what we did next: we participated. I held Anthony instead of letting him run free, but we did it. We had a good time. We laughed. Sometimes, I cried while laughing because the water works weren’t ending.
The class was really fun. It was something that Anthony could follow the directions, and he loved most of the dancing. We will look into doing more in January.
We spoke to Kelly who did the We Move Together class after, and she actually knew who I was because of a post I had written for a local parenting blog. It was nice to hear that my writing is reaching people.
This was also the day we received our swag bags. Every mom gets them, and they’re filled with useful items for both Mom and Tot.
October 26: Mommy Connections Halloween Party
This was a combined goodbye party, and annual Mommy Connections Halloween Party. It was fun to get into our costumes, and to see all the sweet tots dressed up in their costumes.
We’ve been to other Halloween parties from Mommy Connections so I knew what to expect. We watched a magic show, ate some snacks, played with some toys, and got our Halloween portrait done by Kerry’s photography.
Anthony had a lot of fun, and was exhausted by the time we left. Nap time was great!
That was my experience as a Mom Ambassador with the Mommy Connections Mom and Tot Program. I am not able to do it for the next session, but definitely want to join for the January classes. It’s great to get out of the house and meet a wonderful Mom community.
If you’re interested in Mommy Connection programs – they also offer programs for moms or dads), please check them out. Mommy Connections
©ErinLeahMcCrea All photos I share on my blogs are my own, please Ask Me For Permission Before Using Them.
Extra Photo credit to Jennie and Amanda, and the very talented Kerry’s Photography.