Traveling with Babies. Our Packing Check List
Traveling with babies is so different for everyone, some just pack a bag with a few items in it in 5 minutes flat, put the baby in the car and off they go. Not me. We travel often, I don’t cope well with quick packing, or traveling light. I believe that the specie called Mother is so tired due to the number of decisions she makes without her even noticing it. When we make decisions, there is an action taking place between nerve endings in our brains. Nerves that don’t touch each other but rather rely on other excretions to do the “communication” in the physical anatomy of the brain. (I take an Omega 3 supplement to help lubricate this physical decision-making action, don’t know if it works?)
I don’t know how many hundreds of thousands of decisions we make in a day? For ourselves AND our children.
Should I feed her now or can she wait while I wee or take a shower? Should I rather scramble an egg for breakfast because she had grains yesterday and the day before? Shall I dress her in the black leggings or blue? Does it make sense to pick her up from school after my meeting or shall I take her with to the grocery store? Has she had enough to eat? Maybe it’s the teeth? Should I wash her hair today? Do I need to put more nappies on the list or is there another pack in the nursery cupboard? This carries on and on and on. All. Day. Long.
It’s not that we don’t get enough help from others. Even when the dads are hands on, the grannies are helping, we have a nanny or we take them to school, we are still the MOTHER and the helping hands rely on our decision-making abilities when they lend their hands.
When we go away for weekends or on holiday that is my time to relax too, as much as possible. For me, there’s no point in a holiday for a mother with the kids and the family if she doesn’t invest some extra decision-making time beforehand. This is what works for me anyway. I’ve seen mothers at camp sites (on TV, I don’t camp!), working themselves to the bone, and that (to me) is no holiday, I’d rather stay home. If I’m going to go through the effort of planning the trip, shopping for the trip, packing for the trip, I also want to enjoy the trip. It’s not only for the others or the kids for that matter.
And if you’re investing money to go away, you might as well invest the time properly too. I think all families have a better time away when the mom is having a great time too. More bang for your buck.
When it comes to Poppet’s Luggage, we always forget something. This has provided some great entertainment in the past but after our Easter Holiday I decided to set up a check list for packing to make my life even easier. This will inevitably change according to her age/needs etc. but it’s a great start for us and on our last weekend away this was a great help. We did still forget one thing. I didn’t pack a bottle brush, fortunately we premixed her bottles and didn’t need to buy one and boiled bottles to sterilize for a water bottle. We have forgotten the bottle brush on more than one occasion before, so we are building up a collection of bottle brushes. Sometimes it’s not that simple at remote locations where you are unable to buy such a thing and personally I wouldn’t like to be in a remote location with non-potable water, no bottle brush and a newborn baby. We have also forgotten the stroller once before and had to purchase a substitute.
I spend some time packing, a few days in advance, as I can fit it into my day, and I pack her clothes and everything in labelled packets for each day according to the weather forecast. In most cases, there are grannies, aunties and family who want to spend time with her and her dad is always with us. By doing this, they all know that they can simply go to her wardrobe and pick the packet for the day. And, even when I’m doing it myself, there are minimum decisions to be made on holiday. I spend most of my time reading, chatting, playing with her and just enjoying the time away.
Poppet’s Packing List:
Printed List of local emergency numbers in wallet + saved on phone
Printed copy of Location of local hospital in wallet + saved on maps
Thinking as I go from bath time in no particular order…
The Baby! And then…
Baby Bath (if your baby is still tiny and you’re not keen on buckets or basins)
Cloth nappies (or as I call them “spoegdoeke”)
Baby Food Containers
Baby Grows/Pajamas x number of days + extra (We have had to deal with a projectile vomit on the first night once before – She soiled the whole room and surprisingly we have received an open invitation back to those friends of ours!)
Tupperware for sterilizing
Microwave Sterilizer (if your location has electricity)
Sterilizing tablets (for locations without electricity)
Bedding/Pillow Cases/Fitted Sheets (I pack two of each, and needed them both!)
Mattress (I list this separately because we have packed the cot once before and left the mattress behind)
D-Drops (whatever supplement your child is on)
Nexiam (whatever medication your child is on)
Allergex (my child has not been stung by a bee yet, no food allergies known)
Epipen (If your child is allergic to bees, this buys you time to keep the upper airways open till you get to the hospital)
Syringes to administer Allergex/Panado for small babies
Nasal decongestant pump
Calpol/Panado to break temperatures
Nutrition Diary (We used this because she was prem, but we’ve kinda stopped it and now it’s just a diary)
Thinking as I go from daylight onwards in no particular order:
Winter Outfits x number of days + extra
Summer Outfits x number of days + extra
Diaper covers (I don’t like my baby in a bare nappy, I prefer a cover, you even get ones for boys)
Nappy bag filled with all content
Activity gear, swimsuit
Cotton Company Turkish Towels
Blow up pool
MiGi Designs Baby Hammock
Deuter Hiking Baby Carrier
Stroller (we have forgotten this before and had to buy one, it looked like it was meant for a doll even though it wasn’t, I now use the “doll pram” to take her shopping with me sometimes. It’s super small and compact to go in the boot with all the groceries)
Frozen Homemade Food
Grains and Lentils
Boiled and cooled water
Rooibos tea bags (my baby hardly ever drinks tea but I pack one tea bag per day, just in case she decides that water is no longer her favourite and it’s 30 degrees outside)
With Love and Gratitude,
*This is not a sponsored Blog Post but the following items featured were given to Poppet:
Lace Shorts Set and Maroon Romper from Annapatat Kids
Hat, Bib and socks from Bugs Unlimited
Baby Hammock from MiGi Designs
Teething Necklace from Ambre
You can shop your own Baltic Amber products from Ambre and get 15% discount using discount code ‘poppetpatch’ at www.officialambre.com – You can find our views on Ambre under our Blog Post “Natural or Homeopathic Remedies?”.
*English is not the First Language of the Author