Traveling with a Newborn?
The holidays are upon us! For most families, this means travel. And if you have a newborn in tow, this can sometimes be a more lengthy (and difficult) process.
Everyone tends to travel for the Holidays. This can be a daunting task when you have a new baby.
But when preparing for Thanksgiving or Christmas vacations, consider these tips that I used, for those long trips in the car…
Plan extra time for feedings
I exclusively breastfed my son, but this applies to everything – breast, bottle, or tube. You have to allow a certain amount of time for feedings. It’s important to know your baby’s routine, and plan accordingly. If they feed for an hour (every hour!), and the drive will be at least two hours long, then you have an idea of a time frame.
Plan to strike out early. My son cluster fed like clockwork-so we left an hour early, and after the first session, he would be good until we reached our destination.
Comfort is key
Because we chose travel by car, I tried making things as comfortable as possible for me, and my newborn baby. Snuggly blankets, a neck pillow for Mom, space arranged in the back seat for optimal room (avoiding claustrophobia) – whatever it takes to ensure you and your child will be comfy during these stops. Traveling is hard on babies, and the easier you can make it on your baby (and yourself!), the better. And if traveling by automobile, remember you can sometimes…
Get Out Of The Car
We are lucky enough to live right on the Georgia/Florida border. So we never encounter snow! But if you are able to on a nice weather day, consider parking at a rest stop with a nice picnic area, and vacate the car. It will help you to refresh yourself and stretch your legs. And give your baby a different environment for a short change. My son was always a very active eater, and enjoyed looking around until the “milk sleep” took over. Plus, being outside the car for a bit should help you, and your partner, from loathing the car ride to the cousins who just have to live 3 hours away. Something to keep in mind while packing up for the trip, though…
Make A List Of Supplies, And Check Twice
Lists are super handy for all the little details. make sure you have everything you will need for feedings, and at least one extra item (if possible) on hand. Be it bottle, nipples, nursing covers, breast pads, gas drops…make sure that you have backups of anything that can get dirty, or can’t immediately be re-used without proper cleaning. You may not find yourself stopped at a place that will have access to water and soap (that you will feel comfortable using your baby items with), and you don’t want to add more time to your trip (spent washing things).
Pack just enough (not everything!) of the necessities that will get you to your destination, which at that point you can sterilize and clean. Because when baby needs to eat-baby needs to eat! And you’ll want to get back on the road ASAP.
But in the grand scheme of everything, always remember…
Take It Easy
Traveling is hard on anyone, including being stuck in a car for a few hours. Especially hard on newborn babies. The less stress you endure with the preparation, and execution of your trip, the better the ride will be for your child. Children feed off their surrounding energy – if you are calm and collected, it will rub off on them! So relax as much as possible, take moments to stretch your legs and smell the roses (or, at least, fresh air as opposed to the little tree freshener hanging from the rearview mirror), and make life easier on yourself by not rushing. The ride will be a lot more enjoyable for you, and baby!
If you’re looking for more holiday posts, check out this linkup as well!