Decatur IL Moms – Local Mom Hacks

You’ve all seen the buzz feed hacks to life.  Well we are here to give you our BEST kept secrets of Moms of Decatur!  That’s right, all the things that can make your life a little easier when raising little ones in the Decatur area! 🙂







 1.  Dale’s Southlake Pharmacy – They have a FREE vitamin program for your children!!  Plus, have you ever been in the situation that you do not want to drag all your kids out of the car, or they are sleeping so you want to keep them put…  but you really need to buy stamps or another common good?  Dale’s is the place to go!  Use their drive thru window and let those little ones stay in the car with you.   I would also like to encourage you to go INTO Dales… they sell MudPie clothing for kids and adults!!  They also have adorable jewelry that is budget friendly.  Really, it’s the cutest store!!!  Dales-Kids









2.  Grocery Store Freebies for Kids –  There are many reasons that I love shopping at Kroger…. great fuel rewards, their “Make it Right” campaign, the helping you to your car…. they also have a little treat for your kids!  If your kids visit the baker, they can receive a FREE cookie!  I use this as a reward, since the bakery is at the end of our round of the store.  Works like a charm!  Rumor has it that the new County Market gives fresh fruit!


***After comments, I called the Kroger stores to find out exactly what their programs are…. and every Kroger has different choices under each management.  Cookies, Donuts, Balloons and Fruit are all things moms have said they have received for their littles ones at local Kroger locations!  Yet again, Kroger has my heart!***GCN-kroger-free-cookie








3.  Downtown Trolley –  If you follow Decatur IL Moms during the summer months, you will see me raving about one of my favorite summer FREE activities.  I love our trolley.  You can ride around downtown for free, and we always make it an occasion.  We start at the Decatur Public Library for either story time, BabyTALK or just for some play and picking out books.  Then we catch the trolley and ride to Merchant Street.  We usually make all the stops.  Giggles, Dels, Sloans.  It is one of my favorite afternoons of the week every summer!  Read our full Downtown Trolley guide on how to ride the trolley!Copyright Bailey Broderick Photography







4.  Free Car Seat Checks – Decatur has monthly free car seat checks!  Contact Michelle at 217-425-1500 ext. 1313 to schedule a car seat check.  Available every third Tuesday of the month.  You can also check Contact SafeKids at 1-866-SEAT-CHECK.  Or on their website www.safekids.orgCar-Seat-Stacking-Toy-InfoGraph










5.  Toddler Times – Decatur IL Moms has partnered with the Decatur Family YMCA and the Decatur Indoor Sports Center to bring you Toddler centered activities for stay at home moms!  From open gyms to structured activities, they are full of things for your little ones!  For toddler open gyms, visit the Decatur Indoor Sports Center on Wednesdays from 9:30am-11am and visit the Decatur Family YMCA on Thursdays from 9:30-12:30pm!  Gym Fusion has also implemented an open gym on Mondays from 9am-10am.  Besides Toddler Open Gym, the DISC and YMCA have also started preschool programming throughout the year.  Check their websites for more details on their preschool programming!










6.  Sam’s Club-  Clubbing days may be over, but we sure do love going to this Club as a mom!  From sample days (eghm, and the free sample machine!) to getting some products at a cheap bulk price.  Sam’s also has a little known secret.  Their CUPCAKES!   At $15 for 30 cupcakes, this is the place to get them!  Visit Sam’s Club on Saturday and Sundays, and you very well might get lunch for free.  Those sample ladies love your little ones!TrySamsClub-20






7.  Awesome Local Library Activities–  Are you on our local library’s email list?  Well you should be!  They have TONS of activities going on at all of our Local Libraries.  From lego times, READiculous shows, to BabyTALK times.  Our Libraries are hidden gems in our communities!

Decatur Library
Forsyth Library
Mt. Zion Library
Barclay Library







8.  BabyTALK-  If you  have a child under the age of 4, you MUST go to a BabyTALK time.  Besides the socialization of your children, you get socialization for YOURSELF!  BabyTALK can be intimidating, it is a room full of moms that you may not know.  But go a few times, it will soon become a weekly activity for you and your children!  You will talk about the stages and things you have going on with your child.  Sing songs.  Dance.  And even have them read a story and play with toys.  Seriously, GO!


BabyTALK Times:

Mondays 6:30pm – New Life Pregnancy Center
Tuesday 9:15am- BabyTALK Office
Tuesday 6:30pm – Decatur Public Library
Wednesday 9:30am – Forsyth Public Library
Thursday 10am- Decatur Public Library
BabyTALK also offers classes for sign language (Come Sign with Me) and music (KinderMusik)




9.  Rural King – This is a must have on our list, I mean they serve FREE popcorn and have kid shopping carts!  What could go wrong?!?  My kids love Rural King.  Especially with chick and duckling season that is fast approaching!  Go get your popcorn, let your kid run around with a shopping cart their size, go catch them, and take them by those cute little birds in the back of the store!RuralKing











10.  First Christian Church Play Place and The Mosaic Cafe Coffee Shop–  Visit First Christian Church (off Monroe.. you know on your way to Target!!).  They have mixed two of your favorite things together.  An indoor play place to watch your little ones run around while sipping on your much deserved Coffee!  Open 7am-11am Monday-Friday.  Saturday 4-6:30pm.  Sunday 7am-1pm.mosaiccafe







11.  Memberships –  This might be a given for most, but I cannot leave it off our list!  We are a member basically EVERYWHERE in Decatur because it saves us so much money!  Even better, I request them for holidays from Grandparents!  If you are going to visit our Scovill Zoo or Children’s Museum of Illinois more than two times a year, you NEED to buy a membership!!!  Because we have a membership, I don’t feel guilty for just going to the Zoo for an afternoon stroll and train ride!  Other memberships are Surf Club, Decatur Arts Council Membership, Kids Bowl Free.  A special mention goes to my Rainstorm Car Wash membership.  Without you, my car would forever be scattered with goldfish and fingerprints.  We do the 3 months prepay since it is a bit cheaper than doing the monthly withdrawal.  They are all must haves for the mom on the go!


Decatur Moms FOZ Ad_2015-01










12.  Parks – We have GREAT parks!  Our local park system is amazing.  Decatur IL Moms has reviewed our Top 10 Parks to visit.  But the ultimate, fantastic park in our area…..  Corman Park.  It is located just east of Mt. Zion in Long Creek, behind their old grade school.  They have kept the two old school playgrounds… while adding 2 new playground areas!  One of the unique things this park has (besides all the equipment), is the fancy swing where Mom and Baby can swing at the same time.  It is amazing.  There is a track around all the playgrounds that leads you to the neighboring cows.  My kids would stare and those cows and moo forever it seems like.  My kids beg to go to this park weekly!