Lugging the bare necessities

GG July 30, 2010 6 Comments

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Preparing for our trip

In less than two weeks we will be on a five hour flight to Maui with our ten month old son. The primary reason for the trip is to attend the wedding of two good friends.  Of course the prospect of spending a week on the Kaanapali coast at the fine Royal Lahaina Resort can easily qualify as a primary reason for the trip as well! 

Right now the biggest challenge ahead of the trip is figuring out what to bring.  As we all know the airlines charge hefty fees for overweight baggage not to mention the already annoying standard per/bag charges each way.

So, for this summer trip where we’ll be basking in the sun, we’ve narrowed it down to the following:

Pool and beach gear

First, we have 2 different floats we’d like to bring.  One is a whale float where the tail curls around to provide shade for our son’s little head.  The second float is one that has a large built in shade which covers a greater area.  It’s definitely easier to travel with because it folds up into a small circle.

We will also want to bring a few teethers we can throw in the freezer.  These are great for when we’re at the pool because they’re nice and cold and feel good on his gums.  He’s always teething and putting everything in his mouth.

We also need swimmy diapers so Christian can go in the pool without contaminating it.  I usually use the Little Swimmers which work great.  The only real difference between the swim diapers and regular ones are that they aren’t that absorbent, so he won’t feel like he’s soaked up the entire pool in his pants.

I will bring at least 4-5 swimsuits for him so that I can spend lots of time lounging at the pool each day. The swimsuits definitely get dirty between the chlorine and his feedings. I’ve found that Target and Old Navy have the cutest and least expensive options.  Along with that I have to have matching hats to keep his little head cool.  Lately he has been pulling hats off his head as soon as I put them on, so now I’m one step ahead by making sure to use the ones with a little strap underneath.  Also, I will bring the cutest little baby robe I’ve ever seen.  It’s blue and has a little whale on it.  It helps to keep him warm and dry after he gets out of the pool.

One thing we can’t forget to bring are the different types of baby sunscreen that I bought.  I have a baby Coppertone spray which works great for his arms and legs, then I use the Baby Aveeno brand cream for his face. 

I’m not sure how hot it will be there, so I’m going to bring this really cool misting fan that I bought at Target.  If I remember correctly, it wasn’t that expensive and it really cooled Christian down quite a bit when we were in Palm Desert.  Of course the weather in Hawaii will be cooler with the highs in the low to mid 80s, but the humidity level will be much higher than in Palm Desert!

We are also bringing a small pop up tent for tots!  The great thing about this is that it folds up to a small circle just like one of his floaties, so it doesn’t take up any additional space.  This will be great when we hang on the beach.

Airport necessities

For the airport, we definitely need his Graco Snugride car seat, stroller and baby carrier.  Thank God he still fits in his car seat. He’s been using it since he was born.  He hasn’t outgrown it yet, which means we can still use the Snap-N-Go stroller which the car seat fits directly into.  This stroller is great because it’s lightweight, folds easily and great for traveling.  We will transport him from the car seat to his Ergo carrier right before we board the plane.  This lets me be hands free while the airline staff stows the car seat and stroller.  I’ve learned to be careful not to leave anything attached to the car seat when checking it because in my experience it disappears quickly, and they have no idea what happens to it (nor do they care).  When our son was still an infant, we had the newborn insert in his car seat which turned up missing after we got off our flight.  I was really disappointed, but what can you do?  Plus, the Ergo will allow me to safely and securely keep Christian on my lap while we fly, assuming he’ll let me keep him in there.  One time I was told by a flight attendant that I couldn’t keep my child in the Ergo carrier during take off.

Of course, we will need regular diapers.  We only use Pampers which I’ve been using since our son was born.  I was hooked once I realized they had a yellow stripe that turns blue to let us know when he peed!  Since then, I’ve been a loyal customer.  I’ve tried the Costco brand and even Huggies, but they didn’t seem to compare.  So, I’ll also need his Bordeaux’s Butt Paste and Baby Powder for his butt… not to mention plenty of wipes.  Since we’re bringing his diaper bag on the plane with us, I’ll have those necessities packed in there.

I was also told to have tons of snacks for Christian on the plane to help keep in occupied.  Especially ones that take him a while to chew on.  So, I bought Baby Mum-Mums, Earth’s Best Teething Biscuits and Gerber Apple Wheels.  As Always I’ll have his Happy Baby Organic Green Puffs (which he absolutely loves).  All of these will travel well on the plane and shouldn’t take up too much space.  Since Christian will be awake a few hours on the flight before he goes to sleep, we’ll need the snacks to entertain him at least for a little while.

Wherever we go, I never dare to travel without bringing along multiple pacifiers.  We’re at a stage now where we’re trying to wean him off of them and only give them to him either when he sleeps or when we’re in public and he’s extremely fussy.  So, on the plane…we will definitley need them!  They also help with his ears popping.

Feeding

I will be bringing a fair amount of baby food.  Usually I use a combination of Earth’s Best and Gerber, but I think for travelling purposes, I’ll bring the Gerber because they come in plastic containers, as opposed to glass jars.  We will be stopping at the grocery store when we’re there so I won’t have to bring a ton.  We also feed Christian cut up vegetables, beans, tofu, fresh fruit, cheese and an assortment of other food which we can pick up when we’re there.

I also have some boxes of travel packets of Earth’s Best organic cereal.  These are great for not only traveling, but also making cereal outside of our kitchen.  They are individually wrapped packages of cereal, so you just open it and add formula. 

With the cereal, I’ll need to bring a travel food container so I can mix it all up and bring other food to the pool. This means I will also need travel baby spoons and our travel container that holds three 9 oz portions of formula.  This will keep me from having to bring extra milk with me where I won’t have a refrigerator.  And, I will bring plenty of disposable bibs for being out and about along with one full-length Bumkins Bib to use in the room.  I will also need to bring his cooler bag to store his food throughout the day while we’re away from the fridge.  It is a bag that has ice packs built in to keep bottles and small containers of food cold.

Instead of bringing a high chair, I’ve decided to try a new gadget.  On the website onestepahead.com, I saw a harness that I’m going to try.  It’s multifunctional.  When you’re on the plane, you can use it to strap your child to you in the airplane seat.  Since we’re not getting Christian his own seat, this should come in very handy.  Also, you can use it to strap your child to any chair for feeding.  I’m hoping this will work for his feedings.  Time will tell!

Although Christian hasn’t really taken to a sippy cup yet, I think I’m going to bring one to test it out again.  Each time I try to get him to drink out of it, the milk ends up spilling out all over the place.  Or, if I use the Born Free transitional sippy cup which has a nipple-like top, he can’t figure out how to suck out of it.  I don’t know, we’ll try again!

Of course we’ll also need formula.  I’m not bringing a ton of it with me because it’s something we can pick up at the store.  However I will have plenty with me (at least a few days worth) just in case.  We’ve always used Similac Sensitive because it’s the only kind I could get him to drink.  When I first introduced formula to him at 4 months, our Pediatrician (Dr. Christine Curtis) gave us a few bins of the Enfamil.  I was so excited because I know how expensive they are.  I gave some to Christian, and he gagged… multiple times!  So, I had to go to the store and pick up 3 different kinds of formula to see which one he’d actually drink.  Since then I’ve tried to give him the Enfamil again and he won’t touch it.  I even tried the Costco Kirkland formula which someone gave me, but he wouldn’t drink that either.  So, Similac it is!

I think I’ll bring at least 2 Born Free BPA-Free bottles for the formula to use while I’m there.  Since we’ll have a kitchen in our hotel room I think I’ll also bring a bottle brush to clean them daily.

Bathing

It’s tough to figure out how to bathe our son while on vacation without his special bathtub, but I’ve found that when I bring just the padded bathtub mat with me traveling, it works great!  The mat folds up flat and has suction cups lined on the bottom to prevent slipping.  Usually while on vacation, I’ll get in the tub with our son to bathe him to hold him up and make sure I can get him clean especially after a long day at the pool.  I better not forget to bring at least a few tub toys and his Huggies Baby Wash (of which I love the smell).

Clothing

I’m changing things up a little bit when it comes to clothing.  Last time we went to Hawaii, I brought all of these cute little outfits for him to wear at night and show off his baby style.  The problem is that he was always asleep by 5pm before we went to dinner, and when we returned to the hotel room I had to either try and put on his sleeper or just let him sleep in his dinner outfit.  This time I’m going to do things a little differently.  I’m just going to bring an outfit or two for him, plenty of swimsuits, and a ton of sleepers!  He’ll wear his swimsuits during the day and his sleeper at night.  I think he’ll be a lot more comfortable.

Sleeping

For sleeping aids, we always bring his “silky” as I call it, his Sleep Sheep noisemaker, and a comfortable blanket.  His silky is a small portion of a soft, supple blanket that has a small puppy head sewn on the top.  Christian loves to feel on it and have it touching his cheek as he falls asleep.  Also, his Sleep Sheep is a lifesaver!  This travel noisemaker plays one of 4 soothing sounds including whales, rain, ocean and a bubbling stream.  It does a great job in masking the outside noise level changes and lasts up to 45 minutes when one of the buttons are pushed.   I also make sure I have a comfortable blanket for him to sleep with.  The Aden and Anais blanket is perfect for covering him after he’s fallen asleep.  It’s large, think and lightweight which allows some breathing room for him as he sleeps.

Toys and Teething Aids

Also, with our boy teething quite a bit, I’ll bring Baby Orajel, Homeopathic Teething tablets, Children’s Motrin fever reducer and a thermometer. 

As far as toys go, we’ll have to bring a few that travel well and don’t take up too much room.  I think I’m going to buy some new toys that he’s never seen before to occupy him on the plane, but we’re definitely bringing Sophie the teething giraffe, and his Baby Einstein music player that plays classical music with corresponding lights.  He loves these!

I’m pregnant again with our second child, so I can’t forget my Nature Made Multi + DHA prenatal vitamins.  I don’t know why, but it’s so hard for me to remember to take them each day!  I literally have to set the bottle on the kitchen counter so I’ll see it each morning to remind me.  I buy these at Costco in bulk and they’re great!  They’re a lot cheaper at Costco than buying them at the local drug store.

Last but not least we better not forget our camera and extra batteries!  We don’t want to miss any of our tots’ precious moments!  After all, if they are not caught on film did it really happen? Aloha!

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avatarAbout the Author:

GG lives in Southern California and is the proud mother of 1 son. She is currently pregnant with her second child due early next year. GG and her family are avid family travelers who enjoy sharing their experiences.

Tags: , Tips and Hints
6 Comments to “Lugging the bare necessities”
  1. avatar Marilou says:

    Great article! So many helpful hints for traveling with a “tot” it is simply a treasure.

    You’re a great mom!

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