5 Things to Do While Your Child Participates in Their Activity

My son participates in a number of activities, the most time consuming of which, is football. Practice goes down 5 days per week in the summer, and then drops to (a still hefty) 3 days per week once the school year begins. And then, of course, there are games on Saturdays.

With many sports and activities that your child engages in, you’ll need to be on-site and eyeballing their every move. But there will be times where you don’t have to (or are not allowed to) hang around and are looking for ways to kill time. Since my guy is older now, it’s not really necessary for me to be present at every single practice (nor does he wish for me to be), so instead I look for ways to utilize that two hours most advantageously.

To that end, I will share with 5 things you can do while your child participates in an activity that you don’t have to be present for:

1. Take advantage of free Wifi – Bring your laptop along and find yourself a cozy spot to curl up and write/web surf/stream movies/update your iTunes, etc.—basically anything that you don’t have time to do while you’re mommy-ing. All Starbucks and Panera locations offer free Wifi, as do some Dunkin Donuts locations and even some Chick-Fil-A restaurants. Of course, you do need to at least purchase a small cup-of-something so as not to appear to be the Wifi moocher that you are. Want truly free Wifi without the necessity of an accompanying purchase? Head to your local library.

2. Exercise – There’s an events center near my son’s football field that offers Zumba classes for $5, with class times that fall within the range of practice. Sometimes, I’ll head over and dance the time away. Occasionally I will also go for a run at a nearby park. Take this opportunity to get physically active while your child is active.

3. Take a class – Find an hour-long art/pottery/knitting/under-water-basket-weaving class and dedicate practice time to developing a talent that you might not be able to otherwise.

4. Run errands – Moms are never at a loss for errands to run or tasks to complete. Head to the grocery store, fill up your tank at a nearby gas station, head to the carwash—squeeze in as much as you can get checked off your list.

5. Visit nearby friends or family – The older we get and the more responsibilities we take on, the less time we have for extended family and friends. If there are any in the neighborhood of your child’s activity, here is a great opportunity to spend some quality time with them. Call in advance, and schedule a date/time. They’ll appreciate that you thought of them.

These work for me based on location, but what other things have you found to whittle the time away while your little one works or plays?