As I discussed in my previous blog, traveling was terrifying and going to be “different” for me.
I can tell you, that after traveling this past weekend, I have learned a few different tips and tricks that I will share with you. I will also share links to items that were game changers for us.
Keep your nightly routine as similar as possible. Where we stayed, there was no bath tub, so my husband and Noah took showers together instead. Simple tip, take a shower with your little one a couple times before this so that they are somewhat familiar to it. Then, continue your routine.
After the shower, we put Noah’s pajamas on, read books, and had him all ready to go with his room heater, sound machine, and pack and play. This is our same routine that we do when we are at home.
When Noah was real little, and the word “pandemic” was not even in our vocabulary, I thought we would be traveling a lot. I purchased a mattress that fits inside of the pack and play, and some pack and play crib sheets and I really think the mattress made the difference in our son’s sleeping success while on our mini weekend trip.
Many friends and family members told me ahead of time, “do not keep Noah in the same room as you.” At first, I thought they were nuts. There was no way that my little boy was going to sleep in another room, by himself, in his pack and play for the first time, and in a strange area.
After doing some thinking, understanding that he has never really slept in our room, and knowing that if he heard or saw us in the middle of the night, he’d want to play, I decided to give it a shot, having him in his own room.
As everyone had told me, it was much harder on me than it was on Noah. He could have cared less where he was. We brought a couple objects from home that are familiar to him and he had his lovey, stuffed animal Elmo, and his stuffed singing Hess fire truck in his pack and play.
When I put him to bed, and lay him in his pack and play, I left the room and started balling my eyes out. I think it was a combination of, my little boy is growing up too quick, and a fear of how the night would unfold. To Noah, this was no big deal, he played in his crib and fell asleep as he always did. For me, this was a combination of simultaneously feeling like someone yanking my heart strings, and hugging me too tight.
The first night, I did not sleep well. Every little noise that Noah made, woke me up and I was just waiting for the moment that I’d need to go in there and tell him that everything is OK. I never had to do that. Noah slept the night, minus his random 1:00AM babbling that lasted FOREVER.
Let’s move onto the the car ride.
We purchased an Amazon Fire for the car, a mount for the headrest, and a longer charging chord so that we could always have it plugged into the USB port in the back of our car.
My husband downloaded different shows from Netflix, Prime, and Disney+ for Noah to watch in the car.
Bonus, the Amazon Fire, similar to an iPhone or an iPad, has accessibility features built into it so that I could use the device as well.
If Noah got fussy, which did not happen much, we gave him a snack in his snack cup and put on one of his favorite shows.
Also, we stopped a few different times to change his diaper, put his shoes on, and let him shake his sillies out. We even stopped on our way home to get some ice cream at a random ice cream stand.
We brought a ball, some toys for the car, a few books, and even some new toys that we introduced to Noah throughout the trip to keep things fresh.
Traveling is still anxiety provoking for me, but I am glad that we have his first trip under our belt and can make adjustments and modifications for future trips.
Here are the links to some of my favorite items:
Munchkin 2 Piece Snack Catcher
Dream On Me, 3" Foam Playard Mattress
Adaptive Sound Technologies LectroFan High Fidelity White Noise Sound Machine with 20
Unique Non-Looping Fan and White Noise Sounds and Sleep Timer