TRAVELING WITH LITTLES
So recently we went to Hawaii with both Grey and Mila. A 3-year old and an 8 week old. People thought we were CRAY-ZAY. I mean, we kinda are. But, I love traveling, have always loved traveling, and never wanted the fact that we had kids to be a reason not to travel. In fact, to me, it’s a reason to travel MORE. When I was young, my parents took me so many cool places. I still remember those trips, and the ones I don’t, I see photos and OH MY GOSH I know I had so much fun. Anyyyways, people ask me all the time how we traveled with two small kids (Hint! Bring your super loving and patient and sweet mama to help you!) and while there are plenty of people who do it with more kids, and way better than me, here are some of my tips that helped us not only survive it, but also have so. much. fun.
wear all the babies.
Okay, so really. If you don’t baby wear yet, you gotta start. Having your hands free while still snuggling your babies close to you is so helpful while going through airports, on planes, shopping, and playing with your older kids if you’ve got them. There are tons of different types, so you’ll have to experiment to see what you and your baby like best. When we went to Hawaii, I brought a Solly wrap, and wore Mila a TON. Through the airport, on the plane when she wanted to sleep, out to eat, pretty much anytime we went somewhere. The Solly puts her to sleep almost instantly, my hands are free, and I know she will just chill.
- My absolute fave ever are Solly baby wraps. They are thinner and stretchier than a Moby. So easy to wrap on, and then just pop babe in and out as needed. I used ours from newborn until Grey was almost 18 months ;) Prettty sure he was past the weight limit of 25lbs but I didn’t even care.
- We also have a few ring slings from Sakura Bloom and Wildbird. I am still getting used to these but tons of mamas LOVE them. I used mine more when Grey was old enough to hold sitting on my hip, and it was super easy for a quick up and down. Like, if we randomly stopped at a store and I hadn’t pre-wrapped the Solly. Grabbed the ring sling, and we were in and out!
- I have a Tula that I used when we took Grey to Disney when he was 2 1/2. It is awesome for bigger kids! Some mamas love them for the younger ages, but they are wayyyyy too bulky and “about to go on a hike with my child in a backpack” for me.
- I recently got a Sakura Bloom Scout - which is the same idea as a Tula, but with thin linen and leather straps. It’s a lot less bulky, super easy to put on, and so beautiful. I just started using it here and there with Mila, but I think this will be one that Chris uses most, and maybe I use when she is older.
pack lightly and be intentional.
- I HATE bulky diaper bags. Like hate so much. So I am super intentional with what we pack when we travel. The diaper bags I use are from Fawn Design and Freshly Picked. They are both similar in style and don’t look like a diaper bag AT ALL. Chris can use either, and they both are backpacks or regular shoulder strap style. TONS of pockets and roomy interior. I am OBSESSED with them.
DIAPER BAG // MILA
- 2 thin rompers (1 long sleeve with feet for plane, 1 short romper for when we landed, because HAWAII), 1 bottle, (made a mistake here, will explain later lol), formula (we use Holle Goat's Milk), Thieves Dish Soap in a tiny dropper bottle so I could wash her bottles in bathrooms when needed, an extra pacifier on a paci clip, 4 more diapersthan I thought I needed, a pack of Seedlingswipes, a super thin Gathre changing pad, 2 bibs, one thin muslin blankie. Allllll thin. Space saving!!!
BACKPACK // GREY
- He had his own backpack, the only thing from this list I put in my carry-on bag was the change of clothes and blanket
- Change of clothes (leggings, undies, t-shirt), iPad loaded with new Peppa Pig and Daniel Tiger episodes, a few movies, and we also downloaded the YouTube Kids app, kid headphones, thin blanket, his stuffed owl, snack bag (pretzels, larabars, applesauce pouches, and crap ton of little toys from Amazon. This magnetic board was a hit, this little thing was cool for tracing letters, and Melissa and Doug sets are always amazing.
learn from my bottle mistake!
We use Avent glass bottles. Guys, they are sooo much easier to keep clean and so much safer for our littles. They don’t break easily and aren’t that much heavier! But, when we travel, I buy plastic ones because they are easier to pack. So the whole time we were on the NINE HOUR FLIGHT TO HAWAII, I’d feed Mila and literally the milk was pouring out of her mouth. Like soaking her, the bibs, it was a MESS. I had to start shoving the rough paper towels from the airplane bathroom under her chin each feed because I didn't have any bibs left that weren't soaking wet. I couldn’t figure out why she was spitting out literally half her bottles. Well. I finally realized the nipples on the new bottles were a size FOUR. Basically for a 6+ month old. She was 8 weeks and using a size 1 at home - she literally couldn’t keep up with the liquid pouring into her mouth. I felt horrible! We had to drive 45 minutes to a Target once we landed to buy new nipples. Then back again the next day because I still didn’t get the right size. I’m an idiot. So let me make that mistake for you. Check the nipple sizes when buy new bottles.
support your bodies!
Staying healthy is our jam year-round, but especially right now with a new baby.
While traveling, both Chris and I start taking Inner Defense capsules twice a day a few days before we leave, while we are away, and for a few days after we get home. We all (Grey included) up our vitamin Cand vitamin D. I bring our Thieves rollers on the plane, and we roll our feet and spines a few times a day. I roll some on Grey's stuffed owl while he sleeps on the plane. Mila gets Frankincense. I wipe down the plane seats, armrests, and tray tables with Thieves Spray and baby wipes. We use Thieves Hand PurifierALLTHETIME. If you still aren't a Young Living member, you can grab your oils, Thieves stuff, and baby stuff here.
Some other things we do to support our wellness:
- elderberry syrup (recipe here!)
- vitamin c (Super C, the chewables)
- good probiotics (we use Life 9)
- lots of greens! (smoothies, juices, salads)
- integrative medicine doctor (Dr. Julia at BCIM sees the whole fam. we LOVE HER.)
- essential oils
- chiropractor visits (we see Dr. Tara at Hatboro Family Wellness)
- lots of hand washing (NO anti-bacterial soap! no no no.)
- whole foods
- being mindful of what you put on your body and in your body.
- bone broth!! just made a big batch ❤ and so easy to make, even for me, who is lazy AF in the kitchen. We try and drink a little each day.
Bring. Your. Carseats.
If your babe is under two, and it’s a flight longer than 2 hours, pay the extra money and bring the damn car seat. I swear it’s worth every penny. They know they can’t get up, they are used to it, and they know how to sleep in it. Obviously it’s the absolute safest for them too. But it’s also for your sanity. They will be happier. Everything will go smoother. Just trust me, k.
I love Maxi Cosi carseats. Here is the link to Grey's convertible carseat (FYI he is still rear facing in the car at nearly 4 years old! We will keep both kids rear facing until they max out the car seat's height or weight, whichever comes first.) and here is the link to Mila's infant seat. Here’s a link to the carseat cart we use! You attach the seat, and can roll it through the airport like luggage WHILE YOUR KID SITS IN IT!!!! Genius. We’ve also used this harness seatbelt for the plane a few times, but honestly it’s still easier to bring the car seat on the plane. Here are the stroller and carseat covers we use if you do gate check.
- Dockatot - we didn’t have this magical invention with Grey, but with Mila I’d heard how fab they were. I LOVE ours. When she was a newborn I put it in between Chris and I on the bed and she slept in it for three weeks. After three weeks, she went into her room in her crib, with the DockaTot. It’s great because you can travel with it, and they have their “bed” anywhere you go.
- Bring everything from home. We use the love to dream sleep sacks with Mila. Girlfriend needs her arms by her face! We also bring her sound machine, a video monitor, and both the kid's sleepy oils and diffusers. We use Sleepyize, Frankincense, Lavender, Gentle Baby, Peace + Calming, Cedarwood, just to name a few.
- We bring a few tablets of Immupro cut into quarters for when we travel too. It's an immune support supplement with wolfberries and a teeny bit of melatonin. We give Grey 1/4 or a 1/2 a tablet when we travel if he needs help winding down, and I love that it supports a healthy immune system too. Because ya know, airplanes. Gross.
- Mila doesn’t wake up to eat in the middle of the night anymore, but when she did, we bottle prepped at night. Makes it SO much easier. We prefill the bottles with water (filtered from the Berkey!), and pre measure the formula into containers. Then you just dump it in, shake, and go. Both my kids always drank room temp bottles. No heating it up. Again so much easier and they don’t know the difference if you start it from the beginning.
- People ask me all the time how my kids sleep twelve hours so early on, and the answer is Babywiseand oils. Babywise is a book that focuses on healthy sleep habits. I truly believe that so many of the emotional and behavioral issues that kiddos have are lack of sleep. Sleep is integral for proper brain development, and kid's just don't know what's best for them when it comes to bedtimes. It takes us, as parents, guiding them and teaching them healthy habits.
It focuses on an eat, play, sleep cycle. Meaning baby wakes up, eats while they have lots of energy and are hungry - so they get a nice full belly. Then they have their awake time or play time depending on the age, and that tires them out... so then they are tired and have an easier time falling asleep. (Without the need to ONLY fall asleep while eating. And when they’ve fallen asleep while eating, typically they only had a little “snack” so they wake up faster because they are hungry faster! Nice full bellies = longer sleep stretches)
We also don’t let her go more than 2.5-3 hours without eating during the day. We wake her to eat if she’s still asleep. Focusing on a full belly, at regular times. Then she does her longer stretches at night, instead of during the day. We did this with Grey too and it was a godsend. We have never had to do "cry it out" with either of our babies. Bedtimes are easier, naptimes are easier, and they are well-rested and happy and snuggled and loved.
rent all the things.
- Rent a stroller! we made a big mistake here when we went to Hawaii! We’ve always rented a stroller when we get to our travel location. There are companies who drop them off to the house or hotel you are staying in. Do this. Always. It’s the best!!!
(You can rent all sorts of stuff! Baby gates, cribs, swings, bed rails, anyyyything) okay BUT here was my mistake. I brought our stroller to Hawaii because I wanted to use it in the airport since we had so much stuff. I figured I’d gate check it. Ummmm except the stroller I have (babyjogger city select) apparently isn’t allowed to be gatechecked. I’m pretty sure I just had a stickler for the rules TSA person though. Anyways. Had to check the stroller, so it was a huge waste of energy and time. I should have rented. Lesson learned.
amazon prime stuff to the hotel.
- water bottles (we drink Essentia Alkaline water when we travel), diapers, snacks!
- Bring a Thieves Cleaner travel packet, small spray bottle, Thieves Dish Soap, and an empty Thieves Hand Soap bottle. Don’t add water to the Thieves Cleaner and Hand Soap, and then when you get to your destination, put half the packet of the Thieves Cleaner in the spray bottle and fill with water. Put the other half in the foaming hand soap container and fill with water. DONE. Now you don't have to use the gross, fragrance and toxin-filled stuff at the hotel or rental.
chill the eff out.
- You have to just roll with it when you travel. We don’t throw the schedule out the window by any means, but we are much more flexible. If that is making you cringe, I get it. I am a “schedule” mama too, and both my kids do better with routine. We keep the routines but also know that it’s OKAY to let loose a little and adapt as needed. The beauty of being such a scheduler to begin with, is when you travel and get off routine, everyone adjusts sooo much easier when you get home and hop back into the usual. Just breathe, lower your parenting standards a bit, and apply your White Angelica.
Disney World // The Polynesian
Ocean City, New Jersey
Beach hotel overnight trip when Grey was 6 weeks. Why? Why not? :)