Being a mom is hard
Being a parent is hard work – How to Travel with Kids
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Why is it that when you bring home a teeny tiny baby you realize that the amount of STUFF you must now carry around far exceeds the weight and size of baby?
How much weight are you literally carrying?
Seriously, the baby only weighs 7 – 9 pounds and yet you must also carry:
Car seat 10 – 20 pounds
Diaper bag 6 – 10 pounds
Stroller 10 pounds
Purse Ideally 2.2 pounds, but no more than 10% of your body weight
*Go weigh your purse now. I can’t imagine one that weighs only 2.2 pounds!*
Ipad Not that you have time for even a few moments of time on an Ipad, it will come in handy if you need soothing music for infant, or someone else to read a story to the toddler, or a game for the preschooler to play.
Suitcase Thankfully the maximum a suitcase can weigh is 50 pounds.
Do you feel like a sherpa?
We all know that being a mom is hard and this improves only slightly as baby ages. For years you have food, snacks, diapers, changes of clothes for them and you, wipes, toys, antibacterial cream, blanket, stroller, carrier, sling for wearing kiddo when they start to scream from sitting in the stroller…and so on.
You feel like you have lost 10 pounds when the baby is potty trained because you are free from diapers, diaper cream, wipes (No, you are never really free from those now, are you?), disposable cover for changing areas, and bags to enclose offending diapers.
But even when the kiddo is up, mobile, potty trained and pretty independent, mom is still the queen of sherpas.
When you become a mom you need to grow extra arms!
Demi Hugger – GREAT travel invention
Since extra apendages are not a possibility, consider the Demi Hugger. What a great invention! Of course invented by a mom, aka sherpa, who knows how hard it is to be a mom and carrying all the stuff that kids need when you travel! Car seats and strollers and diaper bags and clothes, and toys, and lions and tigers and bears, Oh, my!
The Demi Hugger is a great invention! I love mine because it helps you keep up with those loose items like coats. You know the coats that we insist be brought along since it is going to be 1 degree at our destination, but no one wants to wear because they ‘aren’t cold’. (It is a scientific fact that only moms can carry coats, but I’m sure you already knew that. 😉
I’m afraid my child will cry.
This is every parent’s nightmare – that the baby screams throughout a flight or a toddler throws a fit in the backseat of a car. Whether you are alone in your car or you are on a plane and feeling the staring and judging eyes of everyone around you, a crying child makes a parent feel stressed and miserable.
Being a parent is hard! What do you do if your child cries?
Try. That’s the secret for keeping those behind the judging eyes from being angry. Think about it. When people complain about a screaming child, they are really angry that a parent isn’t doing anything!
Try to feed, try to distract, try to comfort. No matter the age, a child needs something to think about! Keeping a child busy goes a long way towards keeping them happy and quiet on your journey. Being a mom is hard and dealing with a crying child is one of the hardest parts! But you CAN handle a crying child and keep those judgemental people around you quiet and minding their own business!
Things to help with a crying child:
bottle, snacks (break out the GOOD snacks – the stuff you normally forbid!)
stuffed animals, blankets, earbuds for older kids
**Something to think about!
Babies – new toys or plastic kitchen utensils like measure spoons
Toddlers – chenille stems and stickers
Preschoolers – Stories and learning games
Elementary school-aged kids – games, audiobooks
Teens and Tweens – music, audiobooks
How to keep a child still and sitting in the seat
Buy your child a seat of their own.
Yes, usually children under the age of 2 can fly free on the lap of a parent. This is a very bad idea. Firstly, that is a long time for a child to be in your lap. Secondly, what will you do with the child when you need to use your hands or use the restroom? What if your baby wants to get down on the floor? Having a lap baby on a plane is the most miserable way to travel with a child. You have a new person in your budget and that includes purchasing a seat for your child.
How to keep your child safe.
Safety, not ease, should be everyone’s first concern when traveling with a child. When we get into a car, the very first thing we do is buckle up – everyone, no matter age, is safely buckled in a car. But, when we enter an airplane, those rules aren’t hard a fast. Yet, they should be. Just like you can not safely hold a child in a car accident at speeds – usually less than 80 MPH, you can not safely hold a child during air travel. If, heaven forbid, you are in an airplane crash you’ll be traveling WAY faster than 80 mph. Air turbulence is measured differently, but it is just as deadly and happens in the blink of an eye. What if you aren’t holding your child really, really tightly in that unexpected moment?
Options for child safety:
If you insist on flying with a lap baby consider using a Baby B’air. This is a safety vest which then attaches to your body. In the event of air turbulence, this will keep your baby nearer than you could by using your own arms.
2) Use the car seat.
Check airline rules, but an FAA approved carseat should be allowed on the airline. What is nice about using a carseat is that your child is already very comfortable in it. This is familiar territory on an unfamiliar journey. I used a carseat up until my children were 3.
I love this product. I used it for both my kids until they outgrew it. It is the end all be all answer to safety for a child too big for a carseat and too small to be completely safe with the seatbelt in an airplane seat. It is FAA approved and says so right on the strap.
This is a new product so I don’t have any personal experience with it. The notes beneath the advertisement say it is approved for flight use though not for taking off and landing. This keeps a baby snuggly attached to you while your hands are free. This can be used at an earlier age than a booster seat so it can be used at the dinner table, too. Very portable!
You are in the right place for all the tips you need to have a great trip with the kids. Use travel as a way to teach your child about the world. Enjoy the journey, making family memories, and raising global citizens.
Natalie, The Educational Tourist