Looking for places to go with your kids that allows them some play time outside of the house, a little social interaction and lots of fun while also maintaining social distancing, increased sanitation and a safe environment to be kids....well here are three local SWFL spots that I am certain your kids will love (because mine do). And they each have implemented new safety precautions to help us feel safe to enjoy life after quarantine.
Kid's Gym: We Rock the Spectrum
address: Harbour Plaza: 17640 Tamiami Trail South, Suite 309, Fort Myers, Florida 33908
We Rock the Spectrum Fort Myers is an indoor playground that provides children with a fun and motivational environment to help them in the areas of strength, movement, sensory processing, communication, positive behavior modification, social interactions, and self-care skills. Their unique equipment assists all children in their neurological growth and development. Read all about our recent visit to WRTS Fort Myers HERE with updates on the new rules and precautions that the We Rock the Spectrum Kids Gym is taking to help prevent the spread of COVID19.
Sky Zone Fort Myers
address: 14181 S Tamiami Trail #140, Fort Myers, FL 33912
Sky Zone always guarantees a fun time for my kids and gives them a chance to really run off the energy that have stored up from being inside so much lately. With reduced capacity, extra safety precautions and increased sanitation, this is another top choice for some active play that will make them excited to get off the electronics. Physical activity is so important and I am sure your kids are like mine - they have been lacking the opportunity to be active these days. Read all about our recent visits to Sky Zone Fort Myers HERE with updates on the new rules and precautions that Sky Zone is taking to help prevent the spread of COVID19.
C'MON: Golisano Children's Museum of Naples
address: 15080 Livingston Road, Naples, FL 34109
My kids have always loved the Golisano Children’s Museum of Naples. So, we were happy to see them open during this uncertain time. The museum is a brain-building powerhouse and Southwest Florida’s first museum devoted for children and families to learn through play. With hands-on exhibit galleries, the accessible museum invites visitors of all ages to journey through the swamps of the Everglades, weave through a maze, climb a two-story banyan tree, or experiment with the water play station.
Read all about our recent visit to C'MON HERE with updates on the new rules and precautions that the Children's Museum of Naples is taking to help prevent the spread of COVID19.
I am on a mission to get my kids lives back to some sort of new mortal that does not steal their childhood from the fun and activities and memories they deserve. So I searched for local SWFL businesses that are doing their part by practicing social distancing and extra cleaning precautions while allowing parents a healthy environment to bring kids for not only fun but to help keep their minds and bodies active! We Rock the Spectrum Kids Gym is one of the perfect places I found. Adutls are required to wear face mask at all times, capacity is limited so you must reserve your play session online in advance and all guests must sanitize their hands upon entering.
We Rock the Spectrum (WRTS) Kids Gym of Fort Myers is committed to providing a safe, nurturing, and fun environment to foster learning, exploration and safe sensory experiences. Through their nonprofit My Brother Rocks The Spectrum Foundation, they provide social skills groups and activities for children across the spectrum.
It provides children with a fun and motivational environment to help them in the areas of strength, movement, sensory processing, communication, positive behavior modification, social interactions, and self-care skills. Our unique equipment assists all children in their neurological growth and development.. I think that WRTS is an amazing example of helping all children grow and develop by providing an all inclusive environment.
THE GYM SIDE
From the Zipline and trampoline to the swings and jungle gym, my kids were hard to pull away from all the contraptions testing their abilities. I found all the activities on this side of the playcenter to be a great way for kids to build their skills in a safe way, allowing them to take risks while having a "safety net" to learn and build strength. They said it was hard to pick ttheir absolute favorite thing, but ultimately I think the zipline won!
The Imagination Side
I call this the imagination side because it has so many creative imaginative play centers set up that can create endless of creative play scenarios. From a diner and grocery store to a vet and doctor's office, my kids came up with some very imaginative stories while we were there. There is also a toddler area for the weee little ones, as you can see mine are too big for that area, but reflecting back on when they were babies, it would have been a nice area to have new toys to play with.
Birthday Parties Too!
If you are looking for a unique and fun location for a kids birthday, you will want to consider We Rock the Spectrum of Fort Myers. They offer birthday party packages that are designed for the specific needs of the birthday kid and family. Whether your child has special needs and requires our “Rock Unique” package, or your child just wants to play on our zip line and trampoline and have fun, we’ve got an option that will work for your family. Our mission is to create a safe and fun experience for all children.They will even help guide you through the entire party planning process and plan for party favors, birthday cakes (even gluten free), birthday activities, arts & crafts, and more! At We Rock the Spectrum, the fun never has to stop! If your kiddo needs a break from our play equipment, they can calm down in the calming area, or take a break to do some arts & crafts or play dress-up.
They have it all!
Meet the Local Owners!
Vandana (Vee) Patel is a local mom and owner of We Rock the Spectrum Fort Myers Kids Gym.. Her husband of 15 years Ankur along with their two wonderful kids, Aman (9) and Zara (6) are the local family who brought this inclusive indoor playcenter to SWFL!
"Our kids are the inspiration and motivation behind bringing We Rock the Spectrum to the Southwest Florida community, " says Patel. " Zara was diagnosed with Angelman Syndrome (AS) in 2016, a rare neuro-genetic disorder which exhibit symptoms such as developmental delays, no speech or minimal speech, seizures, sleep disorders, frequent laughter, excitable personality, and walking/balance disorders. Aman and Zara love playing with each other and we always struggled finding a place outside our home where both can play together. After taking Zara to various therapies over the past 3 years, I had the opportunity to meet parents with kids of all abilities. Zara has progressed tremendously because of early intervention, so it was then I realized the need for a safe and inclusive environment for all kids to play and have fun together, all while understanding the behaviors that come hand–in–hand with developmental challenges"
Working with kids has always been Vee's passion, so it made sense when she came across the We Rock the Spectrum Kid’s Gym Franchise. After visiting the Boca Raton location, it was love at first sight for her. She is very grateful that she was able to bring a sensory-based gym in SWFL for all kids of all abilities to play together, to learn from each other and reach their highest potential.
A single moment can spark a revolution, collective actions can transform laws, creative expression can change attitudes and an invention can alter the course of history. It’s these threads that weave together to propel a movement — even in the face of obstacles. TOGETHER is how we do it.
"Strength lies in differences, not in similarities."
What is diversity? Sometimes it’s what you see such as gender, skin color and physical abilities. But it can also be what you don’t see like religion, ethnicity, personality, beliefs and values. A person’s value is not related to their race, possessions, personal choices, financial standings or opinions. You are valuable because you are you.
And what really makes a ‘community’ is the fact that it values the dissimilarities in people. The idea of diversity encompasses acceptance and respect. It means understanding that each person is unique, and recognizing our individual differences. Our differences define us, allow us to make unique contributions to our group...to our society.
Now is the time to embrace this diversity. The message to spread love and understanding are more important than ever in our day and time. The history of intolerance is a long and brutal one where people who don’t fit a criteria and set of expectations are not treated the same.
We don’t need everyone to be the exact same carbon copy of one another. We should instead embrace and celebrate how special and different we already are. I look forward to the future of this group of women. I look forward to our future events. I look forward to us listening anf learning from one another. I look forward to seeing you.
big hugs to you all,
Have you been to one of the monthly Girls Night Out Socials? No? Are you looking for a reason to attend? Well here are five ways that having a Girl's Night is good for you.!
1. You get to take off your "mom hat’ for the night
Being a mom is an amazing job to have. It’s also the hardest job you’ll ever enjoy! And thought we typically eat, sleep and breathe motherhood responsibitilites, it is so nice to step out of that role for just a few hours. Get pretty, have adult conversations, have some conktails, make new friends and just enjoy being a woman...not the mom.
2. You smile a lot on a Girl's Night Out!
If you watch a table full of ladies at a bar or restaurant you will notice tons of launghing and smiling. It is guaranteed that if you go out with just the girls, the laughs starts flowing. All of these giggle produce endorphins, relaxes your nervous system and makes you feel more positive about yourself and the world. And you will go home smiling.
3. You process and purge all of your woes.
Women like to talk through our worries, so if we haven't had a chance to chat it out in a while, then it builds up and turns into stress. We’re not necessarily looking for a solution--just the act of sharing makes us feel better.. A great Girls Night Out allows you and your girlfriends get to whine, complain, and share about everything and anything. You get to go home with a clear head, ready to relax.
4. You feel prettier after a Girl's Night Out.
Women notice things that the men in our life don’t. And on top of that, they actually comment on those things. Did you switch shampoos and your hair is fuller...someone will notice. Did the lash growth serum start to work...someone will notice. Is that dress perfectly fitting, you will get that great comment. Rockin a new nail polish, someone will ask you where you got it. You will leave a Girl's Night Out feeling like the rock start supermodel that you are!
5. You come home energized
Though you might leave with a a cocktail buzz, the great buzz will the be the energy that you gain from a night out with some positive women. Reminds me of school days with chaotic slumber parties full of gossip, laughs and nonstop high energy. I went home exhausted but exhilarated and couldn't wait for the next one. Similar thing happens with a Girls Night Out. You will feel recharged and reconnected with your feminine energy and power.
SWFL Girl's Night Out Socials
These are all photos from the SWFL Girl's Night Out "Red Hot Party" at Vergina. AS yo can see all the women had a blast. The monthly networking socials are always fun. I would love for you to check out the upcoming,ing Girl's Night Out schedule and make plans to join us!
For an updated list, checkout our facebook events page: https://www.facebook.com/pg/swflhousewives/events
It’s that time of year again. A time where we all reflect on what we did and didn’t do last year and what we want to do this year. While planning your resolutions for the year, make sure to include a list for just the parent-side of things. Here are my “mom goals” for 2019. I hope to create a year full of meaningful moments, relaxing nights and authentic family time. I hope you will join me in creating a road map of balance and happiness for our families!
Save on the little things so you can do the big things. Removing some small frequent purchases like coffee and slushies will add up; then use that money to make a big family purchase that everyone will enjoy for a long time.
Go on a tech diet. Smartphone and tablet use has gotten out of control and not just for the kids.Gradually reducing the time everyone spends on a device will not only help everyone’s eyes, it allows more time for creative play and is sure to bring us closer!
Be in the picture...literally. Most parents have tons of photos of their kids having fun, but mom and dad are often missing from those frozen memories. Make a point to get in those pictures (even if it means you become a selfie taking mom) so that when your kids look back at them in the future, they will remember that you were there!
Reinstate the family dinner. Get in the habit of eating together as a family with nothing allowed at the table but food and conversation.
Be positive. Positivity is contagious, so be sure to be a shining example. Remove all negative words, like I feel fat. Show your kids how to find positive solutions to even the most negative situation. And always remember them of the things we always have to be happy for.
Boost your kids self esteem. Between a critical, media focused society, absent parents and bullies at school, many kids seem to have such low self-esteem. While it is impossible to control what happens at school or what they see and read in the media, we have control over the most important place of influence: their home! Create an atmosphere of safety, praise, support, affection and happiness.
In 2019, my overall goal of these Parenting Resolutions is to make my children feel important and loved - this will create the Happiest of New Years!
**as seen in print version in. my monthly Lee County Family News Column
HI, I AM MANDY!
I am obsessed with traveling, could eat tacos everyday, can sip wine or shoot whiskey, trying new restaurants gets me excited and my children fill the days with joy, laughter and challenges!
I share fun things to do in and around the Southwest Florida area plus host monthly "Girl's Night Out" events at local businesses and cannot wait to meet all of you! I also do the same thing for the Fort Lauderdale Community!
Aside from Housewives In The City I am a freelance writer, Columnist for Lee Family News , Family Travel Blogger + Influencer and Publisher for a SWFL Church.