I have been taking Oliver swimming since he was 4 months old. As a preemie baby I truly believe that taking him to Waterbabies lessons helped him more than anything else in his development.
In the beginning taking him to swimming was pretty straight forward, he could be bundled up in his towels and put in his car seat while I got dressed. Even when he was a bit more active there was a travel cot that I could put him in to keep him contained. 2 years down the line it is a totally different ball game. Trying to keep toddlers calm after a very active swimming lesson is no easy feat. And so the swimming buffet was born.
The only way me and the other swimming mums have managed to keep our toddlers still is by plying them with a veritable feast. The delights range from homemade wraps to bags of kiddy snacks, chunks of cheese to a plethora of fruit. I justify the huge amount of food Oliver consumes at this time by referring to my memories of swimming. When I went swimming as a child, more often than not it was followed by a visit to the chip shop, after all we had just participated in some strenuous physical activity.
A recent addition to the swimming lessons is going for a coffee afterwards (mainly because we get a discount), so now on top of the swimming buffet they expect to share a sausage muffin. They are truly bottomless pits after lessons.
There are two benefits that have arisen from the swimming buffet.
- The toddlers have got really good at sharing and regularly trade snacks. I’ll give you a grape if you give me a mini cheddar kind of thing.
- After swimming and copious amounts of food Oliver is guaranteed to sleep for a good hour and a half, a very rare occurrence these days.
I would like to say it was the first reason that is my favourite outcome of swimming lessons and the following buffet, but I have always been told it is wrong to tell lies.