With a ridiculous number of ways to entertain, enlighten and enrich, Chicagoland parenthood comes in a countless number of styles, filters and hashtags. So even though you are about to sacrifice your time, sleep and sanity for that little button of cuteness, you never have to give up that certain special something that makes you you.
Because if you give a Chicagoan a baby, you better believe they’re going to make that baby awesome.
If you’re into yoga
Namaste in my onesie. Baby yoga is totally a thing, and it’s just about the most adorable trend we’ve ever seen. It’s also proven to have real health benefits for your mini-me, including increasing motor skills, improving sleep patterns and aiding digestion issues. So get your asana on mommy-and-me style at our favorite local spots, Bloom Yoga Studio or Sweet Pea’s Studio.
If you’re into cooking
Bon appétit, baby! You’re about to embark on the mission of keeping another human being alive, so you should probably know how to make food. There’s no better way to work on your chops than at baby food-making classes, so check out future calendars at The Kids’ Table or Dabble. The best place to score fresh ingredients with littles in tow? Green City Market.
If you’re into museums
You might be anxious at the concept of introducing your little peanut to a huge museum, but Chicago’s best have you covered. Chicago Children’s Museum always has infant and crawler play spaces, and the Oriental Institute offers stroller tours throughout the year.
If you’re into shopping
Raise your hand if you could cry because you’re so excited to empty your bank account buying precious baby everything. (It’s the hormones, OK?!) In that case, you have to check out our local fave, Monica + Andy, for the softest, tiniest clothes that make snuggle time mandatory. All the trendiest strollers, furniture and gear? It’s gotta be Galt Baby. And for the sweetest boutique finds of all time? Try Twinkle Twinkle Little One and The Red Balloon Co. Let the shopping binge commence!
If you’re into happy hour
Play places are about to become your everything, and Sod Room is one all new moms and dads should know. Even though it doesn’t come with alcohol, Sod Room does have a happy hour deal for $8 drop-in play admission. Still craving an after-work pick-me-up? Lincoln Park’s Homeslice has mouthwatering pizza, a superb drink menu and is just as baby-ready as you are, you parenting stud you.
If you’re into music
You might not be moshing or crowd surfing as much as you used to, but babies adore (and benefit from) all the music they can get. Music junkies absolutely have to sign up for one of Old Town School of Folk Music’s Lullabies or Wiggleworms classes and at Mr. Dave Music if they want to ignite that passion in their child really, really early on. For the utmost artistic diversity, check out the JuiceBox programs at Chicago Cultural Center and Garfield Park Conservatory. Rockabye on, little ones, rockabye on.
If you’re into books
Lucky for you, reading and babies go hand-in-hand. Your future bookworm is also lucky that they hang their mobile in Chicago, where the Chicago Public Library has baby-friendly storytimes up the wazoo. Check out its calendar online for more info. Hoping for another happy ending? City Lit Books’ storytimes are total page-turners.