Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Traveling Tips!

I decided to jot down my traveling tips while they are still fresh. We definitely had a whirlwind trip between flying to North Carolina and then driving 1,000 miles.

PACKING: We had three different parts of our trip with different weather so our packing was a bit crazy. I have a list of items that are necessities for a trip with kids such as sound machines, baby monitors and a first aid kit but it seems like all the last minute add-on items are what I need to cut back on. I think packing each individual outfit for the kids in a Ziploc bag would have made it so much easier especially with little socks and bows. It seems like a lot of time was spent looking for those items. Carl went camping before meeting us at my parents so he had LOTS of gear with him. Our van was brimming over with stuff.

Another idea that I have for next time, is to pack separate bags for each part of the trip along with one bag with the necessities mentioned above. Carl lugs our stuff in and out for me but it was a lot to keep up with. Three smaller bags would have worked better than the two large bags. Less is more on a trip! I spent an entire day unpacking, washing and putting away all of our stuff. Some of it, we did not even use.

TRAVELING: Evie is an excellent traveler. Carl says that she has been raised in the car since we moved to Nashville when she was a baby. She used to sleep a lot. Now, she does not sleep at all but she is very calm and easy in the car. My tricks are some new books, toys and movies. Evie loves to snack so I pack a whole bag of snacks such as goldfish, fruit packs and some treats. My van has a coolbox so I put a few sippycups in the coolbox and keep my cooler in the back. We have a bag in the front seat with some of my tricks in it and a bag in the back with her used to store items after she uses them. Some of our staple items are a clipboard with pink paper, flashcards, stickers, little pads of paper, stringing beads and her baby doll with clothes and a diaper. We got stuck in a major traffic accident on Saturday. It took us 9 hours to get back instead of 6 hours. Evie did well until the last hour because I still had some tricks and a few "big guns" left. We refer to our best tricks as our "big guns" and save those for when we really need them. Evie loves necklaces so I bought her a Hello Kitty necklace for a dollar at Target - that was the best dollar that I have spent in a long time! Her necklace entertained her for a long time. Other "big guns" are my little camera, pink paper or even an entire box of tic tacs. Henry still sleeps most of the time but I had a few toys for him so he'd have something to look at while sitting backwards for 9 hours. One thing that I need to remember for next time is to have a bottle in the car. It was time for Henry to eat and it took us nearly an hour to get off the Interstate.  It helps to keep a change of clothes for everyone in an easily accessible location so you do not have to pull out an entire suitcase if a change of clothes is needed.

SLEEPING: I LOVE my sleep and will do whatever is necessary to make sure that it happens. Even if that means taking a sound machine, a lovey, and Evie's own covers with me on every trip until she is 16. I left Evie's pillow at home and she informed me that Nana's pillow would not work for her. She changed her mind by the third night and used one of Nana's pillows. We try to replicate what we do at home even while traveling. Evie still naps if possible and goes to bed within a reasonable time frame. Everything goes more smoothly for us if we are all well-rested! Henry still naps on the go but we will do the same thing for him. We left Carl's parents before Henry's morning nap so he would sleep for a bit. I chose the late afternoon flight to ensure that everyone had a chance to nap before the flight. Nightlights are good things to take with you so that the darkness of the room can be adjusted if necessary.

Travel can be stressful with kids so it's important to have lots of patience! Carl and I did not even notice how long we were stuck in traffic which was probably a good thing because it helped us stay calm even when we were not moving at all. Please share any tips that you may have that make traveling with little ones go more smoothly.


  1. great tips!!! definitely bookmarking this for our next trip! :)

  2. Planning for travelling is not just an easy idea. You have given a great help. Thanks for the advice.

    Movers in Houston


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