Recently I had a lovely shoot with a beautiful family and their 6-month-old daughter. When we were preparing for the shoot we went back and forth discussing great outdoor locations including nearby parks, gardens, arboretums, etc. I recommended starting at their house and checking in on baby's mood on shoot day for how far we would venture out. As parents and child photographers all know, happy baby equal good photos. There are some great ideas for things you can do to make it a better shoot, but we'll talk about that another time.
That day we never left their house. Upon arriving I went through and evaluated different rooms for good lighting and background options. After brainstorming with the parents, we styled out the areas and had 4 great indoor location options and 2 outdoor areas to add variety to the portraits. I set up a small studio lighting kit that could be moved through the rooms and we were on our way. Because we were at the family's home, everyone could easily do multiple outfit changes, we even managed to pull Brody the dog and Turtle the cat into a few photos. Being at home also helped to manage the chaotic moments that can come up during a family shoot with easy access to baby's favorite things (puppets, toys, snacks, the dog and other entertainment). These options mitigated any meltdowns and allowed us to shoot 6 different looks with 3 outfit changes for almost 2 hours!
So while there are many great outdoor locations for family and child shoots, talk with your photographer and consider if an in-home shoot could work for you.