You’re totally selfless when it comes to your kids, of course. But there are some activities that you secretly like, possibly even more than they do. Here are the top contenders for secretly mommy-focused activities.
1. Sports for any child under age 4. Give me a break! They barely know where the ball is, unless they are some kind of athletic wunderkind, in which case you ought to get them out of SuperKickers because they are embarrassing the other kids. But the pictures you can get of a 2-year-old in soccer gear are totally worth it. Awww! Little shin guards!
2. First birthday parties. Between the weird hats, all the people, and the inevitable missed nap, this cannot be considered something for baby. And a person who was just a fetus 12 months ago cannot exactly grasp the abstract concept of a birthday anyway. No shame in admitting that this is a chance to eat cake and show off your Pinterest expertise.
3. Mommy-baby yoga. A baby doesn’t need to do yoga, and the yoga that your butt needs is not this slow and relaxed. Your post-baby body is begging for hot yoga followed by a 10-mile run. But, come on, how cute is baby yoga? Ignore your mother-in-law’s raised eyebrows, as per usual.
4. Museums with toddlers. Here’s a way to feel good about instilling a love of art in your 18-month-old. You still manage to think this when she sleeps through the whole visit after having a meltdown in the car. The magic of the human mind.
5. Homemade cookies. You know what no kid said, ever? “No no, don’t buy me pink frosted and processed cookies! I want the ones you make with the walnuts.” Yet, you feel like the Brady mom when you bake, and at least your husband likes the walnuts.
6. Homemade anything. Kids love anything tacky, cheap, and plastic. That doll you spent nine months knitting will not be appreciated by your daughter until she is old enough to give it to her daughter, who then will leave it in the toy bin and walk around holding some plastic baby with eerily large blinking eyes.
7. Get a fish. The inner monologue: “I cannot deal with caring for one more creature that poops or needs medical care. I’ll get a fish, that’s a good compromise, and then the kids can say they have a pet.” Yeah, until the other kids say, “That’s not a pet,” and make fun of Rover the fish. Maybe that wasn’t the best name either.
8. Educational DVDs. These work out OK as long as you never ever turn on the TV otherwise. The minute the kids get a taste of children’s programming, Baby Einstein is yesterday’s news. Oh well, intelligence isn’t everything. There’s also the ability to sit passively and stare at flickering images of dancing sponges.
9. The iPad. You were totally going to load this up with kids’ apps and bring it with you in the car for long trips or waits at the doctor. Then you somehow started keeping it on the charger in your bedroom and reading celebrity gossip on it before falling asleep. Sorry, Preschool Math Panda app that never felt your child’s loving swipe.
10. Middle of the night cuddles. You say this is the only way to get your child back to sleep, but we all know the truth: you want it just as much. Oh well, you’re only human. And rocking your baby all night probably burns more calories than Mommy-Baby Yoga anyway.