Surviving Parade Season with a toddler

It’s that time again Nola mamas, Parade Season!  Now while Mardi Gras has the wild reputation that will make outsiders think it’s no place for kids, we know better! The throws not only include beads, but also stuffed animals and toys for the kids to enjoy. However, as natives we know that parades can be exhausting, so we have to prepare our little ones. Here are some tips to survive this parade season with your toddler.

1.)Bring your toddler’s stroller

How many of my mamas love toting around their 30+ pound toddler for hours?  Come on mamas, let’s not all answer at once? None? Well here’s a quick word of advice, GRAB THAT STROLLER.  Once our toddlers reach a certain age, we tend to leave the stroller at home, and let them walk. Parade season should not be one of those times; after hours of running around, and being in the sun your toddler will be exhausted. If you think your toddler is too big for a stroller, invest in a wagon (worth every penny) you’ll thank me later!

2.)  Dress Accordingly

We all know that the weather in Louisiana can be pretty bipolar. Friday we can be experiencing winter, wake up the next morning and it feels like summer. You want to dress your toddler according to the weather to avoid complete chaos. We all know that dealing with an uncomfortable toddler can make for a not so fun time. You also should plan what you will be wearing but not just based on the weather.  Toddlers are active and have loads of energy, running behind a toddler in tight jeans and wedges will be a disaster. Dress in comfy loose clothing that allows you to move freely.

3.) Plan meals and snacks ahead of time

During parade season, you can expect any and every restaurant on the parade route to be full with fellow parade goers.  You should plan to wait hours for a table and depending the size of the restaurant, those hours can be spent standing. As mamas we all know that a hungry toddler can easily turn into the Tanzanian devil. To avoid the toddler meltdown, feed your toddler a satisfying meal before arriving to the parade route. Also you’ll want to pack your bag with their favorite snacks, water and juice.

 4.) Bring the family, Carnival time is the perfect time for a family outing.  Many families get up early to go and find a good spot along the parade route.  You can bring out blankets, chairs; food and ice crest for a whole day of Mardi gras fun. Bringing out the family also give you additional help with your busy body toddler. Who doesn’t want extra eyes when dealing with a toddler in crowded place?