Camping With A Toddler And A Dog :: Part Three

Besides feeling utterly uncomfortable, I was so afraid of bears that I couldn’t sleep at all. Like I said, we had lots of fun during the day but being sleepless for several nights wasn’t really recharging my batteries. After three nights of biting my tongue, I asked Paul if we could go home if I couldn’t get any sleep that night.

It must have been just before daylight broke, that I heard the sound of an animal approaching our camp. Then I saw a shadow. I prayed that Emma wouldn’t wake up and that Griffin stayed calm. I tried to wake Paul, whispering that I think there was a bigger animal wandering around our tent. Thankfully, he didn’t brush me off nor fell back asleep (like he usually does). He had heard something as well. He held my hand and with a soft voice I explained my escape plan to him.

After a while, it was quiet again. The gently gurgling of the creek and those darn chipmunks throwing pinecones on our tent was all we could hear. My prince in shining sleeping bag nodded off again.

The next morning couldn’t come fast enough and I was almost glad when I heard Emma stir in her travel crib. As soon as we crawled out of our tent, we saw our camp neighbor walk towards us. Her family had been up since the break of dawn to pack up and get ready to head home. She greeted us friendly and asked if we needed more fire wood, we could use their leftovers. Her next question, however, had me break out in sweat: “Did you see the bear that visited your camp earlier this morning or have you been asleep?”

When she continued to tell us how that bear walked up to our picnic table and put his paws up on my cute tablecloth sniffing around for food, my smile froze and I wondered why I was the only one shaking. Turns out she was a camping veteran and “totally used to sharing her camp with bears”. Oh, right.

Well, not me. A bear sneaking around our tent was enough reason for me to tell my husband that the Thrasher camping adventure was over. And the next time, he wants to take the kids into the woods, I’ll be heading to a spa in the wine country. Mark my words.

{Read Part One here and Part Two here.}

Camping With A Toddler And A Dog :: Part Two

Unlike her Mama, Emma loves camping. And so does Griffin, our dog.

A creek and lots of pine cones - better than a million dollar playground.

I have to admit, seeing our little Miss Sunshine explore the woods with her dog made me happy. She had a blast. Not even dime-sized blisters on both of her feet from wearing her water shoes barefoot in the creek all day slowed her down. Too much to do. Too much to discover. Too many pinecones to collect. Too many monkeys (her sign for chipmunks) to chase.

We didn’t bring a watch. Emma was our clock. When she showed first signs of tiredness, we put her down for naptime. To my surprise, she slept just fine. She neither had problems with the bright daylight, background noise from other campsites, her nervous mother, nor the heat. We brought her lullabies but quickly deferred to the white noise provided by the lovely creek. Her naps were between 2-3 hours. For the first time, I was grateful how easily kids are entertained (read: tired out) by roaming around outdoors all day. At least one of my concerns was unjustified.

As for the dog, he didn’t mind our leash-rope-construction that allowed him to roam around without wrapping his leash around every tree. Mr. Thrasher hung rope between the trees, then attached the leash to the rope with a carabiner hook. That way, Griffin could remain on leash. The creek provided a refreshing “water bed” for him. And the best part (if you’re a dog)? We didn’t stop him from digging. Heaven!

He also slept peacefully through the nights with only mild growling every now and then when a monkey, excuse me, chipmunk got too close.

Emma is taking Griffin for a walk near our tent.

Emma is a born helper. She kept refilling Griffin's water bowl all day and fed him every morning. (Also, pants are overrated.)

Dirt won't hurt. Our campsite setup:

Ugly stroller: $12 at Target. Child entertained for hours: Priceless.

Thrasher Home in the wilderness.

Our gear (download our packing list Thrasher Home Camping Trip Packing List):

I know I promised to share our reason for leaving the beautiful California Twin Lakes in a rush. After the jump you’ll find out here. Pinky swear.

Camping With A Toddler And A Dog :: Part One

I hate camping. I simply don’t understand why people like to add discomfort, uninvited critters, lack of hygiene and unstoppable amounts of dirt to their vacation and call it “recreation”. Mr. Thrasher, however, is a big fan of the cheapest way to vacation uncomfortably sleeping under the stars with nothing but a piece of fabric separating you from rain, wind, mosquitos and bears. Despite my dislike of outdoorsy sleepovers, I agreed to take our 20-months old on her first camping trip and even managed to get a bit excited. (I herewith officially apply for the Wife Of The Year Award.)

I started the preparation for our trip weeks ahead of time. One of my mottos is “Be prepared; then go with the flow.” I humbly like to say I’m quite excellent at the first part, but still need to improve lots on the latter.

These were my major concerns:

  • Our child wouldn’t sleep.
  • Our dog wouldn’t sleep (or stop barking).
  • Mama wouldn’t sleep.

Another minor concern:

  • A bear would eat us.

To address my concerns, I packed everything in my home that could possibly assist me in making this trip easier for myself all of us. You can download my packing list here: Thrasher Home Camping Trip Packing List. Don’t judge, I never said I travelled light!

More advice we didn’t follow:

  • Plan a short trip. Fail: We planned a 5-day trip.
  • Don’t travel too far so you can head home if all hell breaks loose. Fail: We drove for 5 1/2 hours to Twin Lakes, CA.

During my first ever camping trip, I learned that keeping food, especially perishables, cool and fresh is a challenge in itself. So I was thrilled to find out about tin foil dinners and packed a few for our first campsite dinner. I also cut and chopped a bunch of veggies and fruits so I wouldn’t have to do it camp-side. Sliced cheese and deli meat was stored in Tupperware containers so the melted ice wouldn’t get it all wet.

Cut and assembled at home, tin foil dinners make for quick and easy meals. Without the mess and need to wash any dishes. Just throw the foil packages in the fire. Genius. Image Source: Lovely Blog

So much for the prep. Wanna know how it went and why we returned a day earlier? Read Part Two and Part Three to hear all about our camping adventure.

The Perfect Family Car :: A New Thrasher Mobile

We have a new car. 1 1/2 years of disciplined saving and no other major expenses – Dave Ramsey would be proud of us. To be precise, we bought a new car but we don’t have it yet. It’s in transit, on the truck, on it’s way – however, you want to call it. It was very weird to leave a check for the down payment at the dealer without driving our car off the lot.

Our previous car, Roger was his name, served our family well. When we purchased our 2000 Audi A4 Avant, we assumed we’d be driving it for a very long time. Because we assumed that it would fit our family (including the dog) perfectly. We also assumed that we could totally handle the maintenance of a German automobile. Well, we all know what they say about ‘assuming’…?!

Roger, our first Thrasher Mobile. Looking back, I think his name should have been Hans or Gustav.

Let me ask you this: When you purchased your car, did you sit on the backseat to see how much leg room you have back there? Did you consider the space you may need to fit a toddler car seat even though you just got married? Well, we didn’t. While our Audi looked spacious (it was a station wagon, for Heaven’s sake), it actually had a very small interior. We couldn’t even install Emma’s infant car seat behind one of the front seats but had to install it in the middle of the back seat instead. And that still didn’t leave Paul and I much space in the front.

Not enough space between front and back seats.

There was only one solution: Our family needed a car with lots of space for tall adults, a tall toddler, a mid-sized dog, a large stroller, a large cooler and at least three mid-sized travel bags. We needed a car that was Thrasher Road Trip-approved and would meet the following criteria:

  • fit into our budget
  • driving performance
  • large cargo area and spacious interior
  • design
  • bluetooth
  • affordable maintenance and repair expenses
  • and no, we didn’t care that much about gas consumption because they are all the same anyways

After test-driving Crossover-SUVs like the GMC Terrain, Audi Q5, Chevy Equinox and our friends’ Ford Escape, we quickly realized that we had to upgrade and search for the new Thrasher Mobile in the SUV category. After ruling out the Dodge Durango (not liking the design), we tested the Nissan Pathfinder. Still not enough space. So we (as in Paul) went back to the virtual drawing board and researched more SUVs…

(…to be continued.)

As you’re probably anticipating the reveal of the Thrasher Mobile more than Part Two of the Twilight Saga, head over to my Facebook page and guess what car we got.

100 Things To Do Before I Die :: My Bucket List :: Part Two

Make sure to check Part One of my bucket list and come back for Part Three.

Travel (34)

  1. Visit South America (completed)
  2. Visit Asia (Thailand :: completed)
  3. Visit Africa (completed)
  4. Visit Australia (completed)
  5. Visit New England
  6. Visit Florida
  7. Go to a luau in Hawaii
  8. Visit Canada
  9. Drive cross-country
  10. Take the ferry to Sausalito
  11. Stay at a B&B/hotel with ocean view (Thailand :: completed)
  12. Go camping with Griffin and Emma
  13. Visit Neuschwanstein (Germany)
  14. Fly First Class (completed)
  15. Ride a train in California
  16. Eat a croissant in Paris
  17. Sail (half)around the world (High Seas High School project :: completed)
  18. Go on a cruise (completed 2007)
  19. Cross the Equator in a ship and get equator-baptized (completed)
  20. Sleep in a rain forest (Equador :: completed)
  21. Snorkel in the Great Barrier Reef
  22. Attend Loy Krathong, the sky lantern festival in Thailand (completed)
  23. Visit the Oracle Of Delphi, Greece (completed)
  24. Gamble in Las Vegas
  25. Attend a wedding in a foreign country (America doesn’t count, it’s my home)
  26. Have a romantic getaway at an exotic location
  27. See the Statue of Liberty (completed)
  28. Go to the top of the Empire State Building
  29. See a performance at the Sydney Opera House (completed)
  30. See the Changing of the Guards at Buckingham Palace
  31. Hear Big Ben ring (in real life)
  32. See the Grand Canyon
  33. Visit New Orleans
  34. Go on a girls-only getaway

Sports (7)

  1. Learn to snowboard (completed)
  2. Learn to surf
  3. Sail the bay (completed)
  4. Go white water rafting (completed)
  5. Play beach volleyball with professional players (completed)
  6. Shoot a gun at a shooting range
  7. Go horse riding on a beach

What fun things are on your bucket list?

100 Things To Do Before I Die :: My Bucket List :: Part 1

Empty Bucket at Punta Del Este

Photo: David Wilbanks

I’ve always wanted to put it on paper. So here it is, part one of my bucket list (part 2 and 3 to follow). Or in other words ’100 Things To Do Before I Die’. Better get on it since I’m not getting any younger…

Family & Home (11)

  1. Marry my soul mate (completed)
  2. Become a parent (completed)
  3. Adopt a child
  4. Live in a house with a porch and drink homemade lemonade on said porch
  5. Rescue a dog (completed)
  6. Renew wedding vows
  7. Make love in places you aren’t supposed to
  8. Own a house
  9. Own a convertible
  10. Let my husband pick an outfit at a store and wear it for a special occasion
  11. Take my child on a vacation without Papa

Food (5)

  1. Eat at every fast food chain in the U.S.A.
  2. Eat a clambake
  3. Learn to make the perfect Mojito
  4. Eat lobster at a fancy restaurant
  5. Eat something unusual (completed)

Entertainment (9)

  1. Go to Disneyland (completed)
  2. Go on a tasting tour at a microbrewery
  3. See Cirque Du Soleil
  4. Go to a drive-in movie theater
  5. Attend an NFL football game
  6. Attend an MLB baseball game
  7. Go to the World Cup
  8. Go to the Oktoberfest (completed)
  9. Drive on a race track
What’s on your bucket list? Do you have a lifetime bucket list? Or one per year? Or just one for a season? Check out our family bucket list for the summer.

Roadtrippin’ :: Tips For Road Trips With Baby

After mastering the art of flying with an infant, it was time to tackle the next travel hurdle: a road trip with baby.

We were taking turns driving.

I can report back to you that we recently survived our first road trip with baby and dog to SoCal. An infant in the backseat doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go further than the pediatrician or the mall. Even though we were a bit nervous and expected the worst, we ended up having the best road trip of all times. Or maybe it was because we expected the worst…?

Personally, I am not a huge fan of long road trips unless they are part of the journey. And that’s where Paul’s and my opinion go different ways: Paul wants to get to the destination quickly with as little stops as possible. I, on the other hand, prefer to take it easy, stop frequently at rest areas to enjoy some yummy, homemade snacks, get out of the car for a few minutes, stretch my legs and let the dog run around, and I drinks lots of liquids and don’t care if I have to stop every hour to pee. Needless to say, lots of fighting happens in the car. Especially on longer trips.

This time we had to figure out a fight-proof plan. With baby and dog on board, I certainly didn’t want to end up arguing over how many breaks we would or wouldn’t take. Now let look at the Thrasher Road Trip Tips, shall we?

First, we agreed to remain flexible and make the ride part of the journey and enjoy it as much as possible. There wouldn’t be a limit on pee breaks, coffee breaks, nursing breaks, diaper changing breaks or any other breaks. If the usual trip would turn into an all-day ride, so shall it be. We usually try to not leave Emma in her car seat for more than 2 hours in one stretch (unless she’s fast asleep) so our breaks included not only a few minutes of leg stretching for Paul and me, and playing catch for Griffin, we also let Emma lounge around on a picnic blanket for Emma.

Leave with peace of mind and create a packing check list so you don’t have to contemplate the whole time if you forgot anything. What always helps me is to go through a regular day and night routine with Emma and think about the ‘tools’ I need. Remember things like bulb suction, thermometer, baby food including feeding utensils, a night light (to plug in at your destination) and flip flops. (We always forget our flip flops when we leave on a rainy day.) A packing list written once is a suitcase quickly packed every time. Believe me. Martha said so.

In regards to timing, we decided to follow Emma’s schedule as much as possible. When we missed our original departure time (because someone still had to finish packing), we allowed Emma to take her next nap in her crib and planned to leave as soon as she woke up. That way she would be well-rested and happy instead of tired and cranky. Try to stick to her bedtime routine: Change her into her pajamas, read a book or sing a song, say your prayer or do whatever you do to tell her it’s time to sleep.

Then, I prepared lots of fresh food-to-go: chopped fruit, pasta salad, chilled drinks, crackers, the usual selection of Haribo candy, enough water for Griffin and a decent amount of bottled organic German breast milk – all stored conveniently in a cooler on the backseat. All this helps avoiding fast food chains and overpriced gas station snacks. The breast milk was for ‘emergencies’ when she started to get cranky and we didn’t want to stop. Otherwise, I nursed.

Since we had to manage to fit Griffin, Emma, car seat, cooler, breast pump, beach gear, and duffle bags for everyone in the car, we decided to invest into this cargo roof top box. Thankfully, we didn’t have to take our massive stroller since Paul’s mom has a simple Snap’n'Go for us that we attach to Emma’s car seat when we’re in SoCal. But we knew eventually, we’d have to bring it along.

Next: Turn the backseat into an amusement park so Emma wouldn’t get bored. Between a comfy one-piece outfit (skip those cute but unpractical outfits, traveling is not the time to make a fashion statement), sun shades for both back windows, a genius toys-on-a-string solution (see photo below), a box with more toys, a sippy cup with water and freshly pumped breast milk, Emma definitely traveled first class.

Emma is ready to go.

Keep smiling! Take a fully charged camera and Flip to document Baby’s first road trip. We surely captured some great moments and have a couple of fun snapshots to share.

Bedtime routine at a rest area at sunset. Emma was excited!

Any tips or genius ideas you wanna share about successful roadtripping with a baby or toddler? Bring it on!

Little Miss Sunshine :: Sunscreen For Babies

Apparently, it was four degrees warmer in Daly City than in San Francisco today. Ha, take that, you haters! :-)

My little Miss Sunshine and me.

On that note, allow me to preach a bit about the use of sunscreen for your baby’s sensitive skin.

It used to be advised that you should not use sunscreen on babies less than six months old, but the American Academy of Pediatrics now states that sunscreen is probably safe to use on younger children, especially if you just use it on small areas of your baby’s skin that is exposed to the sun and not protected by clothing, such as the infant’s hands and face.

Still, younger children should be kept out of direct sunlight because they can burn easily and may not be able to handle getting overheated as well as older children. So even though it is likely safe to use sunscreen on kids less than six months old, it is safer to keep them out of the sun. ~ Source: About. Pediatrics.com

I am an avid advocate of using sunscreen instead of body lotion during the summer months for myself. That way, you get enough moisturizer for your skin but more importantly, you’re already protected before you step out into the sun. And for Emma I’m doing the same. I don’t care if we just head to the mall – I want her to be protected even on the short way from the car to the mall. I believe an adorable sun hat should be an essential item to your diaper bag during those summer days. And here’s why…

Ultra cool UPF 50+ sun protection hat by Comfykid.com

What Is Sunburn?

Sunburn is the result of an ‘overdose’ of UV rays. A first degree sunburn is not noticeable while you’re in the sun. It only shows through a painful, itchy red rash on your skin later. Often, you only see the damage after you brought baby back into the shade. A sun burn can be pretty painful for your baby, and the implications can be even more serious: Dermatological studies show that frequent sun exposure and sun burn in their early childhood can lead to a higher risk for skin cancer.

I have to admit that it happened to me, well, Emma. She got sunburned. I never felt worse in my life when I saw her cheeks turn red after a sunny day during our Easter vacay in Germany. And I did use sun screen! I guess I didn’t use enough or she had wiped it off and I didn’t reapply it soon enough. Lesson learned. For sure.

Should Baby Be In The Sun At All?

Baby skin is extremely thin and sensitive. Therefore, babies should never be exposed to direct sun light. Their skin is still in the process of developing a protection against UV rays. Only 10 to 15 minutes of sun exposure (without sun protection) is enough, to burn baby’s skin. Especially, between 11am and 3pm, when sun rays are most intensive, you should keep baby in the shade (or inside).

So The Shade Is Safe, Right?

Not so fast. Even on a cloudy day, you should keep an eye on baby’s skin. Clouds don’t detain UV rays, the ones who cause sun burn. Who would have known? Parents also often underestimate the intensity of sun light in Spring and Fall. The proper use of pretective sunscreen doesn’t just apply to the summer vacays at the beach but also to play time in the sandbox, the playground, the Sunday picnic with the family or a visit to the zoo.

And did you know that Baby besides being protected from the risk of getting sunburned can also benefit from chilling out in the shade? – 10 to 15 minutes of indirect sun light already prevents Vitamin D deficiency.

Cover Up!

You may not think about the fact that UV rays can get through normal clothing and burn the skin. Clothing with an Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) of 50+ can offer extra protection and peace of mind. The outdoor experts at REI have a thing or two to say about that.

Don’t forget about baby sun hats with a bring. They can be worn in the water or anytime there is direct exposure to the sun to protect your baby’s vulnerable scalp. Go ahead, add those cool shades to baby’s beach outfit. But make sure the sun glasses offer 100 percent UV filtration.

Adventure BanZ Baby sunglasses offer 100% UVA/UVB protection.

How To Use Sunscreen?

  1. Sunscreens should block both UVA and UVB rays. These are called broad-spectrum sunscreens, which should also be hypoallergenic and noncomedogenic so it doesn’t cause a rash or clog the pores, which can cause acne.
  2. Shake the bottle well before you squirt any sunscreen out. This mixes up all the particles and distributes them evenly in the container.
  3. Most adults should use about 35 ml or 1 oz. of sunscreen to cover their whole body. That’s the same amount that would fit into a shot glass. It’s also about the same as an adult handful. Remember, most people don’t apply enough sunscreen. It’s OK to use more than you think you should.
  4. Apply your sunscreen 30 minutes before going out in the sun. This gives the ingredients time to attach to the skin.
  5. Cover all of your skin that’s exposed to the sun. This includes your back, ears, behind your knees and your legs.
  6. Some studies say it’s a good idea to reapply your sunscreen after you’ve been in the sun for 30 minutes. This makes it more likely you’ll get the places you might have missed.
  7. Definitely reapply the same amount of sunscreen every two hours, even if you haven’t been sweating or in the water.
  8. Reapply sunscreen as soon as you get done swimming, toweling off, or sweating heavily. Yep, the whole 1 oz.

Happy tanning!

 

 

Disclaimer:

The opinion expressed in this post is my own. I am not a doctor and claim no medical expertise. What works for me, may not work for you. Blog owner will not be held liable for the use of any information found on this blog post.

Flying With Infants

 

We recently had a death in our family. It was a tragic accident and we’re still trying to understand how and why it happened. It was no question for us that we would go to the funeral in SoCal. So the big question was – car or plane? For me, it was a big decision to make. But after talking more with my mommy friends, I was encouraged to take the plane. Apparently, at the age of 2 months it was perfect to fly with Emma.

Since we were only going to L.A., we’ve decided against purchasing an extra seat for Emma. It was too expensive and we didn’t feel that it was necessary.

Either way, get ready for some really good advice. Some I found on websites, some I got from experienced mommies. Some I followed, some I didn’t. If you have anything to add, please leave a comment. Other mommy readers will thank you.

Enjoy your first flight with baby! We certainly did and are now anxious to take Emma on her first international long-distance flight to Germany.

Planning Your Trip:

  • The safest way to travel with in infant is to use a car seat and to book an extra seat.

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA), a division of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, has recently updated recommendations of things you as a parent can do to make the trip safer, easier and less stressful. The TSA website has several short videos for parents and caregivers of infants, toddlers and school-aged children to view to help simplify the process of proceeding through the checkpoint. You may want to check it out!

  • Some airlines require a birth certificate for your infant. Check ahead of time.
  • To help decide whether or not to book a full child’s fare for a toddler, see how long you can last with him on your knee in the armchair at home. Then make your choice.
  • Ask if your flight is full when checking in. Some assistants will block out the seat next to you in a less full flight or offer you the option of seating next to a vacant seat. This is particularly valuable if traveling with a toddler under 24 months without a seat.
  • Check that your airline allows you to pre-book baby bassinets before the day of travel – not all will – some only allow pre-booking for infants of 8 months and less, otherwise you must wait until check-in to see if a bassinet is available.

Bassinet are not available on every flight and not every airline allows you to book them in advance.

  • Pack things in see-through plastic bags (not just liquids), so that the security personnel don’t have to rummage through everything and contaminate pacifiers, nipples, and teethers when searching your bag.
  • Wear flat shows – no laces!
  • Have baby wear a one-piece to allow for easiest diaper changing.
  • Work out responsibilities clearly between parents before setting off.
  • If you’re visiting friends or family, find out if baby gear is available to you so you won’t have to carry it with you (ie. borrow a stroller or car seat, have your mother-in-law buy diapers, wipes and other inexpensive baby supplies for you so you don’t have to waste unnecessary space in your luggage or avoid scrambling to find a drugstore at your destination to buy diapers when you arrive).

At The Airport:

  • Allow plenty of time at the airport for check-in, and connecting flights. Remember how much longer it takes to achieve anything with kids in tow and apply the same formula to your travel plans.
  • Smile sweetly and helplessly at everyone and you may get help and be able to jump the line.
  • Get on the plane first and off the plane last to get a better chance of assistance from cabin crew.
  • Look out for fast track customs and immigration check points for those traveling with infants.
  • It’s different from airport to airport but be prepared to remove baby’s jacket as well.

Diaper Changing:

  • It’s a good idea to have a fresh diaper just before boarding.
  • Pack a small bag with just one diaper, a few wipes, a perfumed nappy sack and some rash cream if needed and place it in the seat pocket in front of you. Keep the bulk of your change things in your change bag, but place the change mat or towel, one diaper, a small pack of wipes, tube of cream and nappy sack in an accessible place (e.g in a polythene bag) near your seat. This is all you will likely need for a simple change and will save cluttering the tiny space in the aircraft washroom – you will know when the time has come for all your resources to be called for!

 

Stylish Diaper Changing Kit by Kalencom

  • If you choose to change your baby in the bassinet or on your seat, you will not be the first to do so. Remember to be sensitive to your neighbors, however, and to the cultural sensitivities of your airline.
  • Wrap soiled diapers in one of the perfumed diaper bags, and dispose of in the bin in the toilet.
  • Some planes have a larger bathroom at the very rear of the plane with a correspondingly larger change table. Wait for this to become free if you have a larger baby to change, as airplane change tables are small.
  • On some airlines the cabin crew will prepare the change table in one of the toilet cubicles for you if you let them know that you need to use one. That’s a real help is you have a squirmy, smelly bundle to hold while wrestling with lowering a change table in the tiny space of an airplane bathroom – so the first time you need to make a change on the plane, ask an assistant where they prefer you to make the change, and take any help offered.

Nursing:

  • Nurse baby during take off and landing to avoid blocked ears from cabin pressure. Hold off on feeding baby before you board the plane to ensure she’ll be hungry.
  • Keep two diaper pins attached to your diaper bag. If you can get a window seat (most people will trade you) you can take a blanket and attach it to your seat and the seat in front of you for a privacy screen. People may even help you attach the pins when you’re flying alone.
  • Bring a small pillow for extra support (Boppy pillow may be too big).

Sleeping on board:

  • Try to keep baby awake as much as possible so she’ll be tired for the flight.

Getting Around:

  • An infant baby carrier is really helpful so that you can carry baby while you push a luggage trolley.
  • If you bring your stroller, obtain a get check tag from the ground personnel and only ‘check in’ your stroller at the gate when you reach the aircraft. Make sure to fold it as airport staff may not know how to handle your stroller and damage could be done.

Staying Sane:

  • Don’t be afraid to ask for help (especially, if you’re travelling by yourself).
  • Be prepared to lose stuff (and don’t get fussed when you do).
  • Discuss any concerns or fears with your travel partner and work out a plan for efficient team work (ie. one gets baby through security, other one manages carry on luggage).
  • Treat any time to relax as a bonus.
  • Keep smiling at your baby.
  • Keep track of baby’s regular routine using a dual time clock, and gently adjust baby’s routine as your holiday progresses.

And here’s my favorite piece of advice:

Ignore rude people, especially those whose job it is to help. Only you can know the right way to handle your child. And don’t worry about being ‘THAT’ parent whose baby cries on a plane. YOU know that you’re doing everything possible to calm her down.

All snuggled up and ready for take off.