Hey there ladies!!
For this weeks post I wanted to talk about traveling with a toddler.
As you may know we went on a road trip vacation to Scotland and Ireland this summer and brought Ellie along with us.
Before going on our trip we made adjustments to Ellie's schedule and routine to ensure that the trip wasn't going to be a total shock. We took the long way to our destinations so that Ellie would be in the car seat a little longer, we knew she would be sleeping in our bed with us while traveling so we co-slept at home, and we made sure to adjust the Ergo for optimum comfort.
It was Ellie's first plane ride and boy did we have a marathon of a day. We actually had three plane changes, had to go through security twice and run through the airports. It was a little crazy and stressful but Ellie was a champ!
We were super lucky that Ellie wasn't really walking when we went on the trip so she was fairly content sitting during the flights. Since Ellie is under 2 we chose to not get her a seat and pay the $50 fee instead. #worthit
There were a few things we brought that we definite life savers. We transferred her diaper bag contents into a backpack - which made it so much easier to haul all our luggage. For the flights we made sure we had enough diapers and wipes for any changes while en route. We also brought pacifiers, bottles and formula, and a baby carrier (ergo). We checked the stroller at the gate and made sure that we had Ellie's suitcase as our carry on (with a couple changes of clothes for us).
Ellie did great during take offs and landings as we chose to feed her a bottle during that time (on flight she actually fell asleep before takeoff so she had her pacifier instead). We were lucky that she didn't experience any ear pressure during all six flights! Our life saver was definitely the Ergo. Ellie was comfortable enough in it to sleep and I didn't feel like I had to "hold" her the whole time. Because of the ergo I was able to relax and maneuver my body how I needed to and have peace of mind that Ellie was safe.
Since we we're having so many plane transfers and wanted to travel as "lightly" as we could we chose to rent a car seat from the car rental. It worked out great for us (after the confusion of trying to figure out how to install). I would highly recommend this option since those things are a pain to lug around. However, Europe has different safety standards and the car seat was only able to front face - not ideal, but it worked out great.
After we ran out of our diaper and formula supplies we just bought extras while we were traveling. Easy peasy and it allowed for extra room for souvenirs.
Eventhough we rented a car for most of the trip, we didn't have one in Dublin. So we used the bus and taxi's. Again the Ergo was great because I was just able to wear Ellie and buckle in no problem.
Ellie was great in the car. She fell asleep whole driving and was an awesome trooper. We had lots of snacks, purchased souvenir books, and had toys to distract and sang songs when needed. Although Ellie is no stranger to a car since we took a 6 hour road trip 4 days after she was born to bring her home.
For us 13 months was the perfect age to take Ellie on a trip like this.
I think another reason we had success is that we were willing to be adaptable to each situation and to have "go with the flow" attitudes. Our only big stress was making the plane transfer from Ireland to Scotland and girlfriend slept that whole flight!
Traveling with a toddler (or any child for that matter) will be as stressful as you make it. So if necessary knock back a few pints of Guinness and pretend that you got a full nights sleep!
do you have a toddler? Do you like this series as much as I do? I would love for you to contribute a guest post! Just leave me a comment or send me an email and I will get you scheduled!