Monday, November 3, 2014

Microblog Mondays: Traveling With Baby

For both Thanksgiving and Christmas, we're going to be traveling to visit family in our home state and driving anywhere between 8 and 14 hours. Both times, we'll also be spending time with both of our families which means sleeping in two different houses. We will be driving, so we can pack our crossover SUV to the brim with whatever we need, but what should we pack? I'm 99% sure we're going to bring his swing since that's what he's sleeping in right now, and I want to keep things the same as much as possible in hopes that he'll sleep well in a new environment. Do we bother with little things like his tub, or just bathe him in a sink/the big bathtub? We'll be in large cities, so it's not like we can't run to a store to pick things up, but I'd rather not have to buy an item we already have.

Also, what is the best time to drive with him? We have four options:

1. Leave around noon and get arrive around 8 which is when he normally goes to sleep

2. Leave right after work, around 6 pm, and get to my parent's house around 2 or 3 am

3. Leave around 8, when Kieran normally goes to bed, and get into my parent's house around 4 or 5

4. Leave around midnight and arrive around 8 am.

I'm leaning towards leaving at 8 in hopes that he'll sleep for the majority of the drive, but that will only give us about 2 hours of sleep once we get to our destination before he normally gets up for the day.

Kieran will be 3.5 months for Thanksgiving and 4.5 months for Christmas if age changes anything.


  1. If it were me, I'd leave at midnight and arrive at 8 am. I think that would be the least stressful as he will likely sleep the whole way... not sure when you would get a chance to sleep through!

    I wouldn't bother bringing the tub, but definitely try to bring the things from home he's used to sleeping with, we alalways bring Paloma's tranquil turtle.

    Good luck!

  2. We only traveled 1.5 hours when Paxlet was 3,5 months old, so, not quite the same. :D But, I found that it was easier to leave the house when Paxlet was going down for a nap or bed as he did sleep most/all of the way through. Also, because you are driving, you can stop if needed. (We're getting ready for a huge halfway across the world trip, with a 2 year old and I'm not sure I'm fully ready.) And I agree, skip the bathtub (a clean sink and wash cloth or some other 'tub' will work) and any other item that you can do without that isn't essential for Kieran. Changing diapers can be done on a bed or floor (with a towel underneath). Lovies/stuffed toys and a blanket have always been important for us.

  3. I've always taken things that would make sleeping more familiar/comfortable for my babies/kids, so yes, if he sleeps in the swing, definitely take it. Don't bother with the tub though, you'll find other ways to bathe your baby. If he's that young he still takes at least 2 naps a day, no? I've always found that it's different when we're traveling... sometimes you think you leave just before naptime so they will sleep for the majority of the drive and they nap a mere 45 minutes... other times they sleep the entire trip. So... I would go with the option where YOU are most awake. We've never done nighttime drives - I do remember daytime drives where I was constantly bending myself in all kinds of contortions trying to soothe a crying baby / finding pacifiers etc.... but also other trips where they slept like angels and the whole trip took less time because we didn't have to stop every 2 hours... Anyway, that probably doesn't help much, but I would go with option 1.

  4. Shew what a choice. I guess it depends on how well he usually is in the car. I would probably do option 2, which might allow for you to get some sleep before he's up again, but that's thinking of my kids and their habits.

    I would definitely take the swing, but probably not the tub. For even short stays at family, we always took a swing and usually a bouncer too, but my kids didn't love the swing that much.

  5. When A was little, we always left during the evening and she would sleep the entire trip to our destination. Sometimes we would pull off at an exit and I would take her out of the car seat to feed and chnage, but she almost always went back to sleep. It worked great!

  6. I have no advice but I'm wishing you luck! Your CX-5 must have waaaay more miles than mine!!

  7. Based on the experience with my kids, I'd go for 1. Mine rarely slept in the car due to the lights on the highway. So they'd be up all night, getting progressively more cranky. We still end up doing the driving in the day out of habit.

  8. I would do whatever option will give you the most sleep because I think Kieran will be fine regardless. We travel 3+ hours a lot (which I realize isn't close to your time), but it seems to go well. I would feed him before you leave, he will probably sleep then, take a break to stretch/get him out of his car seat/feed him, and then continue on with your way. You'll probably have to make a few pit stops, but hopefully it goes well. Can you just buy a swing and leave it at your parent's house for next time? Same with the tub? Just a thought. Good luck!

  9. We've flown with Audrey pretty much everywhere, so her longest car ride has only been 3 hours. But even with flying, we're trying to time out everything to make her sleep as long as possible on the plane. One of the keys is definitely that YOU will need to be on a decent schedule too, or everything goes awry. So that being said, I think I'd go with #1. If he tends to not mind napping in the car, he likely will take a longer nap than normal with the movement and the white noise. Then, some singing and maybe small toys can help with the awake time. That way if he is "up" a little more at night, you'll still be at your parents and better able to manage than if he does that unexpectedly in the car.

  10. I'd leave around his bedtime. That would likely mean fewer stops, and hopefully you can be up with him a bit in the morning & then family could entertain him while you nap.
    Although, he'll still be young enough that he won't be moving around much on his own, so leaving at naptime might not be a bad option. Just bring toys to hand him when he gets bored. I wouldn't do that with an older baby because they'd want to have some crawling around/active time.
    Definitely skip the tub. I'd bring anything that is soothing to him or reminds him of bedtime (like a favorite book, lovey, etc).

  11. It's funny, a lot of people said no to the tub but I was TERRIFIED to bathe L until she could sit well, and that was...huh? Seven months? Eight? We had a tub that we left in the hotel before we moved to Germany and then instantly went and got a new one when we arrived. But that is what worked for me. We did a road trip at nearly 5 months and the drive was miserable. I had to sit in the back seat and fed her lots of bottles as we drove. :(