Spending time outside with your baby looks a lot different in 2020 than in summers past. We’ve traded air high-fives for hugs, and subbed BYO-picnics in for potlucks.
There’s still a lot of unknowns in terms of safety, and while some of us might be chomping at the bit to spend time with other humans in real life, others might not be there yet. That’s okay! But if your family is ready to spend time with others, we suggest doing so outside, where scientists and doctors say the natural airflow will lessen your chance of contracting the coronavirus. And if you’re outside with your baby, you’ll need to come prepared.
Here are some of our favorite social-distancing friendly gear for babies and grown ups alike!
The number one thing you need for any adventure outside your home is a face mask. And because medical masks are in such short supply, we’ve had a little fun finding cute masks that make having to cover your nose and mouth almost slightly enjoyable. The truth is, it doesn’t matter what your facemask looks like at all, as long as you’re wearing one to protect others and yourself. We’re obsessed with these pretty styles from Hatch Collection.
Outdoor picnic blankets are super important for socially distant meet-ups with other families, especially if you have toddlers or young children. Spread your blanket at least six-feet from others, it makes socially distancing yourself something that can be seen even by tiny eyes, and even if they don’t quite understand why. Explain to your children that your blanket is your homebase: they can play on it, but they cannot share blankets with other people. We love this blanket because of its beautiful pattern, waterproof fabric and that it folds up into a wearable backpack for portability!
This custom mat and bowl set isn’t just for your fresco high chair! You can pack it in your picnic basket, too! The large mat makes sure your toddler’s bowl stays where you put it, whether on your picnic blanket or on a picnic table. Bringing some routine pieces from home -- like a familiar plate -- will also signal to your child that it’s time to eat, even if we’re in a new and exciting location.
Spraying hand sanitizer on little hands is so much easier than gel. We love this lavender scented, fair trade spray from Dr. Bronner for on-the-go sanitizing. Keep a bottle in your diaper bag, in your pocket and in your stroller. You can also use it to spray your cart handle down at the grocery store or anything you might be worried about having to touch while you're out of the house.
We’re all so deprived of human interaction these days. When you finally do get to spend time with loved ones (from a safe, masked distance), you’ll probably never want to leave. So make sure your baby is ready for the long-haul by bringing the comfort of home to the park with you. Our coco go 3-in-1 bouncer is the epitome of comfort. It adjusts to three positions: upright seating, bouncing or lounging, which makes it the perfect cradle for your baby when you’re out of the house. For napping, playing or relaxing, our coco go is a favorite of parents around the world!
Keep your coco go safe and clean with our custom carry bag. It’s super durable, protects your lounger and has a shoulder strap for easy carrying. And it even zips into a tiny pouch for stowing when the lounger is in use. Grab the coco go and its included for free!
Babies can’t wear face masks, but you can protect your tiny ones with this versatile multi-use cover from Copper Pearl. These infant car seat covers have been popular for years in the newborn parent crowd for years and now they’re an absolute essential for any type of outing with a baby in tow. You can also pop it off the car seat and use it as a nursing cover if your baby prefers a little privacy.
Pandemic or not, any trip you make out of the house with your little one definitely calls for a baby carrier, and Baby Tula is one of our favorite brands for baby and toddler carriers. They’re comfortable for babies and caregivers and come in so many fun patterns like this newly released rainbow version! It’s adjustable, breathable and even has a waist pocket so you can keep that hand sanitizer at the ready.
Whether you’re picnicking at a park or at a friend’s house, you’ll want to minimize your points of contact to reduce the risk of contamination. Investing in a really large water bottle will help you with that, so you won’t have to use public fountains or go into your friend’s kitchen to fill up. We love this giant 64-ounce bottle from Swell that keeps your water ice cold.
Hanna Nakano is a Washington, D.C. based writer and photographer, and mother of two.