As many, including myself, are packing bags and getting ready to travel during this Christmas season, I thought I would compile a list of helpful tips for traveling with babies or toddlers. The first few of these tips will be for cloth-diapering parents.
1. If you're currently using cloth diapers, resist the urge to make a temporary switch to disposables! It's tempting to switch to disposables while traveling (I've even done it myself before), but let me tell you from experience that using cloth away from home is totally doable! If you don't have enough stash to last throughout your trip, I'm sure there will be a washing machine somewhere nearby that you can use. We usually stay with family, and they don't mind me throwing in a load of diapers or training pants while we're there.
2. Be sure to bring your favorite diaper detergent with you! You never know when you'll need to use it. Also, wet bags are a must-have item for me. I bring a Knickernappies doorknob diaper pail, my large Planet Wise wet bag, plus 2 medium wet bags for any daytime outings. I keep clean diapers in my doorknob pail, then start filling the other wet bags with the soiled ones.
3. Put an extra insert in your baby's diaper before going on the road, or use a nighttime diaper to help withstand the trip. I always used a LoopyDo along with a microfiber insert for car trips. Now we're in the potty-training stage and I use Bumbledoo or Super Undies on the road.
4. Make a portable diaper-changing station (diaper pad, a few diapers, wipes, wipes solution, rash cream, etc.) to have easily accessible while driving. You might have to stop a time or two to change, and trust me, it's the worst feeling in the world to know your diaper supplies are buried at the bottom of your trunk!
Here are some tips in general and lessons I've learned about traveling with a baby/toddler:
5. Bring A LOT of clothes! Once you've packed 3 or 4 outfits for every day, pack several more! Don't forget to bring several bibs, burpcloths, and washcloths as well.
6. Bring some toys, also easily accessible in the car, for your baby/toddler to play with. Even babies need to be entertained sometimes on the road.
7. For us, pacifier, fuzzy blanket, and glow-worm had to travel with us or we would get no sleep at night. We eventually got smart and left an extra pacifier, blanket, and glow-worm at both of the grandparents' houses after forgetting them a couple of times!
8. Make sure your baby is riding safely in his/her car seat. Here's a great article to read: http://thestir.cafemom.com/baby/108322/9_lifesaving_car_seat_rules
9. During all the holiday excitement, don't forget that your baby/toddler might get anxious around the crowds and strangers. Try to schedule in some quiet time each day.
10. Last tip: Germ-X, Germ-X, Germ-X! The last thing you want is yourself or your baby to catch a bug while you're gone!
If you've got other tips to add, please add them in the comments below! I would love to hear them!