SPRING TIME IS TRAVELING TIME
Spring is here, the sun is shining, skies are blue, and it is the perfect time to do a little traveling. There are so many places I want to go during the Spring and early Summer. We have plans to visit family, go camping, and just visit some new places to do the whole tourist thing. I have always loved a good road trip. However, now we have a backseat rider that makes traveling a little more… should I say…interesting.
Traveling with a baby is much different than when Nathaniel and I were on our own. A trip to Hilton Head? Sure thing I will be in the car packed and ready in 10 minutes. That is not the case now that Aksel is in the picture. He is a little more complicated to pack for a long car trip and vacation. There are a few things that should be considered when traveling with a little one. We have learned planning is the key to a successful road trip.
SHORT TRIP TRAVELING
There is no way I would have planned a cross country trek for Aksel’s first car trip. We barely make it to Augusta, about an hour from the house, without a major meltdown. We chose a trip that was more than an hour, but did not call for twelve hours in a car seat. Our first trip was to Dillard, Georgia, about three hours from the house. It was a little longer than a trip to the city, but did not over extend Aksel’s tolerance for car travel too badly. He fussed a little bit, but he needs to learn to be content riding in the car. Overall it was not too bad of an experience for him or Nathaniel and me.
I know some people love to get in the car and ride until their bladder or the gas tank need attention. There are no stops scheduled unless it is a medical or mechanical emergency. That will not work when traveling with your little monster. Sometimes they just cannot handle one more mile of a road trip. We plan our route so that there will be enough civilization for frequent breaks. This sometimes means a quick stop to have a look around, and sometimes, in my experience, a quick break for fishing. A quick change of scenery can work wonders for your little one’s state of mind.
NAP TIME TRAVELING
This is definitely my best advice. When we set out on our first family car trip it was definitely planned around Aksel’s sleeping pattern. He usually is an early riser and takes a nap mid morning. So, as you can guess we had the car packed and ready to go as soon as that little booger started yawning and rubbing his eyes. Aksel loves sleeping in the car. His nap was peaceful and lasted a little over two hours. That was definitely enough time for us to get a large amount of the miles out of the way.
FULL TUMMY TRAVELING
Aksel is not a happy camper when he is hungry. Of course when they are under a year old, they are slaves to their comfort. Right before Aksel fell off to sleep I was sure to nurse him to a full belly. There is nothing worse than that , “I am about to starve” shrill coming from the back seat. If our trip had been longer than three hours I would have definitely made sure we planned meal breaks to keep my little sweetie satisfied.
I have learned a bored baby is a screaming baby. Aksel love stimulation. I definitely made sure he had a few toys he could play with or chew on in his car seat. Nathaniel also made sure he had a few of our little one’s favorite tunes. Our little cutie is definitely a product of being the first child/grandchild. He is well entertained. So, as you can imagine we are talking or singing or just making silly sounds to keep that little monster happy during car trips. I also like sitting in the back seat with him. He likes to see a familiar smiling face. On our Dillard trip I entertained him by taking his picture. He always smiles when he sees the camera. Of course I could not help myself, he is just too cute.
The past few weeks, we went up to the Dillard House, then up to Virginia to visit some family. Each place we stayed was relaxed and comfortable. He was always surrounded by family and people that wanted to play and love on him. Make sure the place you stay is not too crazy, loud, or uncomfortable. Having a nice place for your family is best for you and them.
These little tricks helped keep our road trip tolerable, even enjoyable. Now, I will not say Aksel is now a fan of riding in his car seat on long trips. However, with a little planning he certainly was a trooper. I hope all the young families out there are able to do some traveling and enjoy a vacation with their little one.