We’ve all had days where bedtime cannot come soon enough. On those days, my tried and true solution is a trip to the Place D’Orleans Mall. For a kid who loves pushing buttons (of all kinds) much amusement can be had just by riding the elevator to the second floor. Our trip to the mall starts out by finding a parking spot in the ‘parking basement’, saying ‘open sesame’ to the sliding doors, pushing the elevator button to the first floor, and a visit to Mrs. Tiggywinkles to play with the Thomas the Tank Engine trains.
Next stop is a walk down to the fountain, which sprays water up to the 2nd floor every 3 minutes. We can’t pass by the fountain without waiting for the blast of water to sky rocket to the skylights above. Then we throw a few coins into the fountain and make a wish!
Now it’s off to the 2nd floor – another elevator ride – where we hit up the Tim Horton’s (a coffee for mommy and two chocolate Tim Bits for Joel). I hoist Joel up onto the counter so he can pay for our treats. Conveniently located just around the corner from the Tim’s is the Mini Port! This little hidden gem is a saviour for cranky kids and tired moms. This is where I sit with my coffee and relax while Joel run wild. Run by the YMCA, the Mini Port is a safe and secure play area where kids can hide in tunnels, climb on bridges, and have a great time! They also offer a drop off service where you can leave your kids and shop.
For the cost of a coffee and Tim Bits (and a couple of coins in the fountain) you have yourself an inexpensive, yet fun and active afternoon. Now you just have to resist shopping while you are there 😉
From the Place D’Orleans website:
If you need a break but the kids are still raring’ to go, stop by our Mini Port located on the upper level near the food Court. Put your feet up and relax while you watch your children enjoy safe and creative fun. Mini Port offers a separate toddler section, washroom facility, seating area for parents and safe and secure equipments. This service is free and your children can stay as long as you let them. Mini Port is open from 9:30am to 8pm Monday to Saturday and 11am to 5pm on Sundays.
The YM/YWCA also offers a Drop and Shop program for children between the ages of 2 to 7 and is available for birthday parties. For more information on these services, please call (613) 834-8631.
Vicky is mom to a 3.5 year old boy Joel and nine month old girl Mieka. She also blogs at Some kind of Wondermom.