It’s that time of year again for taking off on that midyear holiday to escape the winter blues and for those of us with children, this thought can bring more terror than joy! Depending on your circumstances, the idea of heading off on a long family trip (don’t even mention solo Parenting) is the last thing to evoke those ‘blissful’ holiday vibes you’ve been dreaming about.
If you asked experienced family travelers they’ll tell you the main thing to get you through is …being prepared. With a little bit of preparation and the behaviour gods on your side, it can be a great experience after all!
You can never be too prepared and little things like taking the right amount of snacks, toys & activities can really make or break your trip. We started writing down all the things our mum coaches used to do with their littlies and then had a look at some great travel hacks other Parents & Bloggers had shared and found quite a few similarities between them.
- A Travel story- Such a great idea to create a ‘travel story’ and help set the scene for what might happen during the trip. It’s as easy as talking over where they’re going & how they’ll get there, kids seem to be a little more content knowing the ‘big picture’ and just what to expect on their holiday.
- Plan your trip around sleep/feeding times- This might seem like a no brainer but traveling during their sleep/nap times could work in your favour. Early morning could also get the best out of them, before the afternoon crazies set in.
“I found keeping the children up later than normal the night before a long trip, with the travelling motion in the car or the aircraft hum they’d eventually drop off to sleep.” Leesa (Mini Jets Head Coach)
- Take some new toys/games- Buy a couple of new small items & wrap them up for a surprise, new books, sticker/activity/ colour in books & pencils, IPad, play dough, small bottle of bubbles.
“One of my favourite hacks was to put each child’s toys/activities in their own large zip lock bag, making it convenient to see & grab what they need” MJ Mum Carly has three children and they’ve all recently returned from a trip around Europe.
- Food- ALWAYS, I repeat ALWAYS have snacks with you! Packing reusable or zip lock bags & ice pack with lots of little snacks for each child is so handy. Foods like fruit, twiggy sticks, sultanas, nuts, cheeses, vegetable sticks, biscuits & dip, muesli bars, food that will fill them up & keep them busy (book a child’s meal if the airline offers it). Stock up on plenty of water & limit the sweets to avoid the sugar rush. Team this up with the odd take away meal and this should get you by.
- Break up the trip- Try to plan frequent stops, every few hours in the car get out to have a run & stretch to burn off some energy. Air travel with layovers en route to a domestic/overseas destination can be just as beneficial for the same reason, burn that energy & hopefully, they’ll drop later during the flight!
- Teddy/sleep toy & blanket- Snuggling in is always better with their favorite toy & blanket. Jackets can also be used as a blanket or a pillow. Travel pillows are such an awesome travel aid for your child and can be a valuable way to make them more comfortable while sleeping (see below)
- Lightweight collapsible stroller- These can be a lifesaver for traveling through airports & sightseeing in general.
- Check the weather in destination & attractions- Plan your trip and schedule in activities, the weather & length of activity can take a toll on your children so make sure you have some ‘down time’ as well.
‘Jordan from Millennial Moms’ gives us her light-hearted, informative approach to those epic road trips visiting family interstate
Have a peek at this cute ‘homemade’ Emma Wiggle & Peppa Pig video about airline travel & what you’ll be doing before, during & after your flights at the airport
Turning average travel items into essential play toys
- Forget the regular suitcase check out these ride on kids cases & scooters See Trunki Ride on Suitcases/See Scooter Case
- No more bulky headphones, try these headband earphones See Headband Earphones
- Check out these designs which should be a staple in your bag for traveling with kids!
- Toddler Travel Beds for when their too big for a cot & don’t want to use a single or rollaway bed-‘Mum on the move’ travel blogger has an extensive range and all the information you’ll need
- Hopefully, you’ve found some useful tips here for your next holiday with your little ones. Remember even a little bit of preparation goes a long way! Check out this great website for more Holidays with Kids
BACK IN THE GYM…
PLATFORM AND TUMBLE TRAMP – We’re jumping while keeping a snowball between our knees and doing bunny hops. We will also be having some wintery fun leaping over puddles, climbing the snowy mountain, building snowmen and sliding on toboggans.
FLOOR – We’re doing cartwheels on snowmen, egg rolls and holding our front support shape on a floor bar. You might also see us ice skating and throwing snowballs through hula-hoops.
BARS – Let’s have another try at the tricky basket hang, we’ll swing with a re-grip, walk along the p-bars and front support on the bar (some of us might even be doing a forward roll over the bar).
TRAMPOLINE – The snow will be in full flight when we jump like snowflakes (star jumps) and combine it with a penguin drop (bottom drops).
BALANCE BEAM – We’re stepping over snowballs, crawling like snow leopards and walking on our toes.
During the next few weeks, you may see us dancing to Frosty the Snowman, Ice skating on the parachute, having a snow fight and making frozen angels.