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Traveling with a wee one

“Wee one” = something I’d never say in real life, but I like typing it. Kinda like “y’all” 😉

Thank you so much for all of your awesome comments on my last post. I always love to hear about your experiences, because everyone is different and different things work for different families. Goes to show that if you have a “plan” and it doesn’t turn out the way you’d like it to, you get creative and find the best option. I’ve had to roll with the punches and am just thankful we found something that worked for us.

Speaking of plans, we’ve been wanting to go to Italy for quite a while. Usually Tom ends up deploying, TDY or we’ve had to move, so we’ve waited it out for the best time to go. It will be our 5 year anniversary this fall, and we thought it might happen this year (and it still could, but might be delayed). When I got pregnant, I pictured myself toting our baby in the Ergo in the Italian countryside. I laugh at my pregnant self sometimes 😉 Now that I see all of gear, logistics and planning it takes to get to the grocery store, let alone another country, it makes me do a double-take.

pack n play

I don’t think it’s impossible to do it, but with Livi at this age (she’d be 7 months when we were thinking of going), the question is: would it still be fun/worth it? Or should we just wait until she’s a little older and can enjoy it with us, or old enough to stay with her grandparents without me having an anxiety attack? They would take amazing care of her, but I miss her when I go to the gym for an hour, so right now, I can’t imagine an entire week away from her.

5062_image_file Source

We want to be able to travel with Livi and take her to fun places with us, but are going to start small and plan a roadtrip to Phoenix in an upcoming weekend. It will be a good chance to practice packing up her gear, staying in a hotel, her first time sleeping overnight in the pack n’ play –usually it’s a nap spot- and pumping, bottling, etc. away from home. It’s only 2 hours away, but far enough to enjoy a mini vacay together. This summer we’re renting a condo in California for a week or so, so by then I’m hoping that getting everything together will be NBD.

What are your tips for traveling with a baby?

Anyone that traveled internationally with their baby at a young age?

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82 Comments

  1. Casey on March 29, 2012 at 7:50 pm

    A mini vacay sounds great! I am actually heading to Phoenix/Scottsdale this weekend for a quick getaway. 🙂 I’ve never been. Any must-eat or must-do recommendations?? Would very much appreciate it!

    • Eva on March 29, 2012 at 7:53 pm

      Depends on what you’re wanting to do, but definitely a hike (I prefer South Mountain), and some good food! I lean towards Asian, so I recommend Takamatsu in Phoenix. 🙂 Have fun! I live in Tucson, but I’m up in Phoenix almost every weekend.

  2. Kate on March 29, 2012 at 7:52 pm

    We did! We planned a trip to Italy when our son was 14 months old. We had planned for a long time and I figured it would be “fine” to leave my son for that long. Yeah, it just gave me 8 months to dread leaving him!! Lol

    But we went and had an amazing time!! We left him with his grandmas and were gone 6 nights. He was fine! Looking back (he’s a little over 2 now), it was easier to leave him then than it is now. I think had we brought him it would have not been relaxing and would have been a logistics nightmare!

    I say go with your husband and have an amazing time. You’ll never forget it and can take your baby another time. 😉

  3. melissa (fitnessnyc) on March 29, 2012 at 7:52 pm

    I nannied for my five month old niece a few years ago, we went to three countries in three weeks and all over them. She was great, we did tons of site seeing! My sister in law traveled a ton internationally for work and breast fed, so my niece had been to 17 countries in her first year of life. She is thriving! I just recommend flying business class.

  4. Mali on March 29, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    Well, we went to Puerto Rico when my son was four months and I was stressing the entire time about the plane ride but he slept both ways! We rented a condo in Fajardo and that was the best idea because we had everything we needed there and there were three pools in the complex so if it was too sunny to take him to the beach we just hung out at the pool. It was definitely unlike our other vacations but those five days are ones we always talk about (9 months old now) because he ‘swam’ for the first time and we went to the rainforest, Old San Juan, restaurants, visited family, etc. with our little guy. The ERGO was our friend but most of the time he hung out in the stroller. At the beach we used that baby tent (forgot the name) but the way it’s packaged makes it super flat to lay inside a suitcase. We traveled light, just car seat, stroller, and minimal outfits b/c we had a washer/dryer there and once we landed we went straight to Walmart and bought essentials (wipes, diapers, etc.) while our aunt watched the baby. Deliciousbaby blog has awesome tips for traveling with a baby so I followed a lot of her rules, especially on what to pack for the plane. We are going to Texas next month so wish us luck he falls asleep on the plane again!

  5. Lindsay on March 29, 2012 at 8:00 pm

    I think you should wait. At 7 months old, you would be giving Livi all of your attention still. I feel like you may miss out a little on such an amazing experience. A year later, when she is able to walk and explore, you will feel like she is experiencing Italy too (and not just along for the ride). I have a 17 month old (named Olivia) and she is interested in so many things now. I love taking her new places to see how she experiences it!

    Traveling with a little one is never easy but it can be done. 🙂

  6. Emily on March 29, 2012 at 8:01 pm

    Our first big trip was from LA to Vandenberg for an entire weekend. It was a little rough because I had to do all the packing, organizing and later, unpacking, by myself because we went to visit the hubby who’s there for 10 weeks. It took about 2 days just to organize and make lists of everything we’d need. Then I intentionally planned an afternoon departure so 1. I’d have the morning to load up all of our overnight stuff and 2. it’d be nap time. I was so stressed but honestly, the trip went great! The twins did great, it wasn’t a pain at all, it was a lot of fun. I planned for every worst possible scenario I could picture from breaking down on the side of the road during the drive to having extreme diaper issues and not a darn thing happened haha We had everything that we needed, kept with the twins normal bath time and bed time routines, got to go to all the nearby towns, took lots of walks, ventured around base and had a really great time so I’m glad I sucked it up and went 🙂 It was a nice getaway for everyone so I definitely wouldn’t let the little one slow you down 🙂 We’re planning a 2 week trip this summer and more fun day/weekend trips now that I know it’s doable 😉

  7. MMiller on March 29, 2012 at 8:08 pm

    We left our daughter when she was 10 months old for a weekend to go away for a friends wedding! It was wonderful to get away, but we couldn’t wait to get back to her! I had just stopped breastfeeding, so I didn’t have to worry about her having enough to eat! My Sister-in-law would always use ready to feed bottles when she went on vacation with her little ones! No worry about cleaning bottles, etc! Depending on how long you are planning on nursing, you might consider waiting until you stop! You wouldn’t have to worry about pumping and storing! And you can drink!!

  8. Shannon (the daily balance) on March 29, 2012 at 8:10 pm

    We went to Florida last year when Sawyer was about 4 months and we’re going back this summer! We also took quite a few weekend trips and I’ve created a post to sum up my tips, which can be found on my motherhood tab. Here it is – hope it helps!

    http://www.thedailybalance.com/2011/07/12/try-it-traveling-with-a-little/

  9. Leeanna on March 29, 2012 at 8:10 pm

    We vacationed with friends at there 4 month old on one of the out islands in the Bahamas for 4 weeks and it was great! I guess the best advice I can give, based on my experience is to just relax and go with the flow! When his mom got stressed about anything, he got stressed but when she was chill and just adapted to the situation, so did he! Its definitely more daunting to plan than the actual trip will be!!!

  10. Sabrina on March 29, 2012 at 8:16 pm

    No idea on tips, but I will say that 7 months old is a FANTASTIC age for traveling. She will be old enough that you know everything about her needs and how to predict them, yet young enough that she isn’t running around yet. Raffi is 6 months + 1 week right now and he is the perfect age for traveling and basically anything.

    We are taking him to Armenia this summer. I hope it goes well!

  11. Meredith on March 29, 2012 at 8:30 pm

    Check out
    Project baby
    http://www.projectbabyblog.com/

  12. britt on March 29, 2012 at 8:41 pm

    “i laugh at my pregnant self sometimes.” haha! i do the same thing when i look back to the way i planned things would be. i was crazy! but i kind of miss the naivety of it too 😉

  13. Daniela on March 29, 2012 at 8:42 pm

    I can’t remember much of anything before four or five years old (including a trip to Disney World). I say either take her now or leave her with the grandparents. If you postpone, it could be forever!

    Plus I had a friend take her under one year old child to Italy with her husband, and she loved it.

  14. Elizabeth on March 29, 2012 at 8:47 pm

    Check out Project Baby, they’re in France with their little one!! We’ve traveled to eastern Europe with our 4 month old. Not a big deal, she slept a lot in my wrap or sling, slept with us or in travel crib. Super portable at this stage as she only wants to be with her mama! Get a bulkhead seat for the bassinet on the plane. happy travels!

  15. chrissy on March 29, 2012 at 8:50 pm

    i was in italy a few months ago with my very own husband of 5 years:) and it is the absolute best place to go as a couple (ok, i don’t have kids or want any so i think anything is more fun without a kid, but trust me on this one). it’s just such a sexy time! it was just so lusty…..i mean we’d be somewhere and we’d be like “that could so be a dolce and gabbana ad.” i feel like when we’re 80 we’ll be back in italy still picturing ourselves the way we are now, that feeling just sticks with you. wow, i’m cheesy.

  16. Alison on March 29, 2012 at 9:04 pm

    I would definitely wait – at 7 months she’ll either be scooting or crawling and want to just get down and go. That will be really hard in airports, airplanes, and cobblestone streets. Also, as she gets older she’ll be much more aware and interested in whats going on so it will be way harder for her to nap on the go. You’d have big chunks out of every day when at least one of you would have to be in a room to let her nap. Not to say it can’t be done but it just might be more work, less vacation.

    The bad news is though that Rowan is 19 months old and I still miss her even during her naps…that part will never get easier!

    • JennP on March 30, 2012 at 9:07 am

      The napping is a very good point! On a beach vacation, it’s no biggie to run back to the condo or hotel for a nap, but in Europe, there is so much walking and wandering far from your hotel. Plus, dinners are eaten so much later than they are in the US, and they take FOREVER – which is really nice and leisurely when you’re with adults, but maybe notsomuch with a baby.

      I would just be afraid of saving and shelling out big bucks and then realizing afterwards that I didn’t get enough out of it… or worse… TOTALLY regretting the decision a day or two into it.

  17. Lisa @ Fresh Spinach on March 29, 2012 at 9:05 pm

    Where in California will you be staying?

    • Fitnessista on March 29, 2012 at 9:19 pm

      we’re looking at condos in the la jolla area

  18. Katheryn on March 29, 2012 at 9:21 pm

    We’ve travelled lots with our kids. With they were little babies, toddlers, preschool, and school age. It was something we did right from the start so they’ve always been used to travel. One thing that helps is to be relaxed yourself. If you’re frantic and manic, they will be too. We also haven’t ever traveled with loads of things. The bare minimum for us. We’re experts at making a baby bed with cushions, blankets, and sometimes using a dresser drawer.

  19. Rachelle on March 29, 2012 at 9:22 pm

    Hi,
    Just want to say longtime reader, first time commenting. Love your website! And congratulations! 🙂
    My husband and I take a couple vacations a year and we wanted to continue to travel after our darling daughter was born. The following two products have gotten us through the first 2 years. I can’t say enough good things about these products:
    The Guava Family GoCrib works great when they’re really young. You can find it at REI online, pricey but really works well!
    When they’re a little older the Kidco Peapod Plus works great. You can find it online at BabyAge. This is what we’re using now for our daughter as she outgrew the GoCrib.

  20. Shelley on March 29, 2012 at 9:34 pm

    Hey Gina! I have been travelling with my kids every year since they were born, i have a 5 and a 2 year old. It is no short distance either! I am a single mum so always travel with just me and the kids and every year we come from Australia to Los Angeles which is roughly 24-26 hours flying from where i live. LOOOONNGG!! But if you just make sure you are prepared with everything you think you will need and have the right attitude then it’s fine, some times it’s hard but i just keep my eyes on the prize (DIsneyland yay!) and that keeps me sane!

  21. Lara on March 29, 2012 at 9:40 pm

    We travelled to London and Germany w our 6 month old and it was pretty great. He could nap in the stroller and we had a pretty tight bedtime “routine” by then so we would put him to bed in his stroller and we could take him out to dinner! He was a late mover and we were slow to introduce foods so we did not have to worry about those issues. I was still nursing which helped alot. Baby wearing and going with the flow were key. The hardest part was getting his passport photo when he had no neck control and I had to hide my hands behind him. Kids are more adaptable than us… The time change affected us more than him. Do it!

  22. Christina on March 29, 2012 at 9:47 pm

    We went on a month long trip to Europe when our first daughter was 10 months old (11 months by the end). She was a GREAT traveler, we couldn’t have asked for more, and we definitely enjoyed the trip. BUT, you have to just be prepared to have a slower schedule, turn in at night earlier than you’d want, etc. Most days she would nap fine in our carriers, but several days we made it back to our hotel for an actual bed nap. And while we definitely stretched the evenings longer than normal, we were still in by 9 or 10 at the latest.
    We had a combination of travel that trip. We had family in Germany, so we had a house/laundry/etc. to use there (and also a stroller and carseat to borrow). But about 3 of the weeks we spent traveling (Paris, Italy, Czech Republic, Ireland), either by train or plane. We were able to borrow their big backpacks when we went out on the smaller trips and we got a backpack diaper bag for the trip as well. That was key so that we weren’t having to drag or carry anything with our hands before checking in wherever we were going.
    We also got one of those Pod beds and “trained” our daughter to sleep in that before we left. That was VITAL as we didn’t want to have to bed share (DH and I wanted the choice of staying up later than her in our hotel) and lugging around a pack n play obviously wasn’t an option. When folded up and put in it’s storage bag, the Pod bed easily fit into one of the backpacks we were carrying with plenty of room still for our clothes on that leg of the journey. Best $80 we spent preparing for that trip. We even used it on the one overnight train we took 🙂
    Sorry for the long message. Your trip can definitely be done, you just have to think carefully what type of vacation you want. Slower with earlier evenings? Or fast-paced and late nights out on the town. Enjoy planning whenever you do go!

  23. JennP on March 29, 2012 at 9:57 pm

    We have traveled quite a bit with our daughter. She’s only 1 and has been on 5 different trips that required air travel (one of them to Canada). The trip to Canada I actually tackled by myself since my husband couldn’t get off work.

    The air travel itself hasn’t been too bad. My daughter is a mercifully patient flyer, although we did have one massive diaper explosion en route to Minneapolis last year that almost brought me to tears 🙂 The difference between our trips and what you are describing is that we are always traveling to visit family and/or friends, so we have never needed to take ALL of our baby gear (my in-laws and northern relatives have all had a Pack n Play, a car seat and a highchair for us to use). Plus, traveling to see family means that you get some help and some baby breaks. A trip to Italy would be a HUGE undertaking, and not something that I would personally be willing to tackle with a baby that young!

  24. Allyson on March 29, 2012 at 10:04 pm

    I traveled with my oldest when she was 7 months old to Germany by myself! I met up with my family to go to the World Cup. Looking back I can’t believe I did it. It was seriously easy though. She slept a lot on the plane ride (even with a 2 hour delay on the tarmac getting out of the US). I was exclusively BFing though and she hadn’t started on solids yet, so all I needed to feed her was me. 😉 On the plane ride back (by myself again) it was still easy, but I was sitting next to a mom with an almost 2 year old sitting in her lap. I will never ever forget the plane ride for that poor woman. Holy cow.

    I also went to France with my daughter when she was 9 months old. It was a little more difficult planning baby food, but doable. The most difficult part was navigating the public transportation. We bought a super lightweight Maclaron (sp) stroller that was expensive (for such a small stroller), but was a total life saver. My husband and I could both lift it up and down the stairs and we could also stash the diaper bag underneath in the tiny basket. It turned out being a fantastic trip.

    Traveling with my 6, almost 2 and almost 3 year olds? Not gonna happen. My advice, go now!!!! Much easier than when they’re mobile.

  25. Deanna on March 29, 2012 at 10:13 pm

    If you need a babysitter when you’re in California, I would like to volunteer. Livi so cute! And since you’re basically the reason I’m finally getting in shape, I kind of feel like I owe you.

  26. Sarah on March 29, 2012 at 10:16 pm

    LOL, actually I’d just like to know how to afford all these things on a military salary and a part time salary. California condos for a week, a trip to Italy, drive a BMW, I’m seriously wondering if there’s a secret. Because I know it’s not a budget! I already have one of those. We’re military and I work full time with a child and it’s not happening. Otherwise I’d be happy to give you advice.

    • Fitnessista on March 29, 2012 at 10:31 pm

      hey girl,
      thank you to you and your hubby for serving our country <3
      the blog is actually my main source of income- i teach fitness part-time because i love it 🙂
      we're very smart about how we spend our money and stick to a budget so we can do fun things and make purchases that are important to us while still saving for the future.

      • Brittany on March 30, 2012 at 5:02 pm

        what do you mean by your blog is your main source of income?

        • Fitnessista on March 30, 2012 at 5:25 pm

          it contributes more to our family’s income than teaching fitness does. it’s my main job, but i teach fitness because i love it and love where i work

  27. Jen on March 29, 2012 at 10:23 pm

    I’ll just say this…. go now, either with or without her. Because a toddler/preschooler is to tantrum-y and an elementary schooler is too whiny (My feet hurt, I don’t want to go there, this is boring, etc.). We thought of going to Europe this year with our 8 and 9 year old but decided against it based on the fact that I didn’t want to spend all of that money to listen to the whining. Kids are going to be kids wherever you go – if you can hack it, great. Or, you can just go to Hawaii where everyone is happy like we did. Saving Europe for when they are either old enough to really want to be there or until they are out of the house. Should have gone when they were babies! Of course other’s would disagree, I have plenty of friends who travel with their elementary aged children… but they all travel internationally a lot and their children are adjusted to it or they have nannies to keep them happy. This will be a once in a lifetime for us most likely so I’ll wait until my personal children can handle it 🙂

  28. Ginger on March 29, 2012 at 10:41 pm

    I’d wait. Until baby is down to 1 nap a day (~18 mos), you’ll hate to have to spend that much time in your hotel while in such an amazing place for a short time! (and when Livi is much bigger, she won’t be sleeping in the wrap like she does now)

    • mary on March 30, 2012 at 12:06 pm

      I think this is a good point.

  29. Kristen on March 29, 2012 at 10:47 pm

    My Dad got stationed overseas when I was a newborn, and my parents moved – and traveled back and forth to the states – with a 10-week-old baby. We moved back when I was 3 and at this point I had a baby brother in tow. They said that having us on planes so early made us great travelers as children.

  30. TanyaS on March 29, 2012 at 10:57 pm

    We had to go to Boston when my daughter was 10 weeks old. I planned to take her and had the same baby bjorn fantasy, but thankfully my MIL knew better and offered to keep her while we were gone. I missed her, but our trip would have been a completely different experience and given the temperature of Boston in August it would have kept us in air conditioned locations instead of venturing & exploring.

    We did Disneyland when she was 10 months and it was perfect. She was still young enough to be happy hanging out in the stroller not have tantrums & napped often, but old enough to eat with us in restaurants and have fun with.

    • Brittany on March 30, 2012 at 5:00 pm

      Thats my neck of the woods! What part of Boston?

      • TanyaS on March 30, 2012 at 6:29 pm

        We stayed at the Boston Common Hotel, loved Copley Square. Didn’t rent a car so traveled by foot one day out to Fenway, a couple days to Quincy Market, one day all the way over to the Barking Crab for dinner (we were tourists, afterall!). I figure we walked 13 miles each day. Plus we did the bike tour which was awesome. Loved Boston much more than I expected to.

        • Brittany on March 30, 2012 at 7:54 pm

          I know right where that is! Fenway and Quincy market are awesome. I love walking through Quincy Market. And dont worry, the Barking Crab is not just for tourists. I have lived here my whole life and growing up my family went to the barking crab all the time (we still do!) It is such a nice place to live. Everything is so easy to get to on the train! Who needs to know how to drive!

  31. Lauren on March 29, 2012 at 11:03 pm

    this might not be too helpful, but when I was 9 months my mom’s grandmother was in really poor health over in Germany and my parents had to make the decision of whether to go visit and tote me along or not…they have always said that going was the best decision they could have made at the time…yes it was a bit more stuff but nothing that was unmanageable

  32. Carrie on March 29, 2012 at 11:07 pm

    Go! Taking one immobile is much easier than two mobile!!?

  33. Averie @ Averie Cooks on March 30, 2012 at 12:00 am

    I took my child out of the country and on epic flights when she was about 8 months. Not going to lie, the flights…sucked. It was…awful. The crying, the no where to go and we’re trapped on this flying bus feeling. BUT…it was ALL worth it when we got there. I don’t believe in waiting to travel if that’s what you want to do and feel it’s the right decision for everyone just to do it “when she’s older”. However, IF that is the right decision for you guys, to wait til she’s older, then that’s the perfect decision, for you all. For us, we said, what the heck…and applied for her passport when she was 3 mos old 🙂

  34. Maddy on March 30, 2012 at 12:04 am

    I think it all depends on the baby’s disposition. My impression of Livi is she is a mellow baby or at least much mellower than my guy. The fact you can take her to restaurants and she sleeps some is great. Mine didn’t last in restaurants. Friends of ours had a much easier baby and that kid had quite the passport by the time he was 2.They had some family overseas which made it even easier.

    We found a long drive to the beach to be about what we could handle and we waited until he was past 1. Went better than expected, but taking him at 2 was tough and so forth. Here is my priority list for keeping baby happy

    1.) Food (if the baby is on solids)
    2.) Lots and lots of diapers/wipes of course
    3.) Pack n play so you don’t worry about baby getting an injury when you both need a break from being vigilant
    4.) Favorite toys and blanket as well as new toys & lovies to make the trip “rewarding”
    5.) Calming music
    6.) Favorite DVDs….On our first trip to the beach Elmo saved the day. Anytime he was stressed or difficult we put in an elmo DVD and I swear it was baby xanex. Maybe this should be #1. I know people are anti video, but we did introduce them once he turned 1 and he learned soooo much from DVDs and I could actually get things done.

    Good luck with whatever you decide!!!!!

  35. JDM on March 30, 2012 at 1:13 am

    I highly recommend checking out Joanna Goddard’s blog: A Cup of Jo. Tons of tips about traveling with a baby. Just spent three weeks in Italy last May. Just amazing. I recommend staying away from the large cities if you are bringing your wee one. The Lake Como area up north and Sorrento area down south are very family friendly and gorgeous!

  36. Dani Down Under on March 30, 2012 at 1:20 am

    When our daughter was 15 months and our son just turned 4, we travelled as a family from Australia to Malta, Sicily and Paris. Since Australia is the opposite side of the world, our flights to Europe and back were about 25 hours. We were gone for 6 weeks. People thought we were crazy. But my husband and I love to travel. We had been to Europe many times and we wanted to celebrate my husband’s 40th birthday with a bang, so off our little family went. It was amazing. Until I am an old woman I will remember having a picnic on the lawns by the eiffel tower with my children running around, mingling with children from all over the world, eating ham, baguette’s, olives, cheese and my husband and I drinking red wine. Then when the sun set and the lights came on…. my children’s faces awed by the magic. Yep my heart was full that night. No regrets at all.

  37. Alison on March 30, 2012 at 1:59 am

    Our friends had their first child in October and just got back from 6 weeks in India this past week. If they can do it, you can too! My friend Dona’s blog is: http://www.wanderingdona.com – you should check into it and message her to see how they handled it!

  38. Marisa on March 30, 2012 at 2:41 am

    We’re stationed in Germany and know of many new families who travel with their infants. I have a co-worker who traveled around Europe for 1wk with her 6 month old baby. She said that some of the hotels have bassinets in the rooms and they just brought their stroller/carseat and an ergo carrier with them. The one thing I remember her saying about flying was during take-off and landing she fed (breastfed) the baby so that the baby’s ears would not get clogged up. I’ve been on flights where the poor baby could not stop crying because his ears would not pop. I don’t have kids, but I’ve seen my friends travel with their infants and toddlers all the time. It’s do-able!

  39. marinka on March 30, 2012 at 4:43 am

    We didn’t go outside our country but we did fly domestic couple times with him since he was 7 months old-Everytime I was worried and everytime it was fine. Mostly he would sleep during the flights in ergo, and didn’t cry, he had pacifier in his mouth-so no ear problems. I brestfeeaded him also. Those were short flights(45 mins). We also traveled some by car (12 hours ride!!-he slept most of it because we chose the night period for these reasons) and some by boat. Every time we’d be surprised how well it wen’t and how good is to travell with the kid. He really enjoyed the new things even so small and was always happier someplace new then home!! So I say go for it! But I think also sometimes it’s good to go without the kids also! Mine is 14 months now and soon enough (if only we had more money…:))we wan’t to go somewhere on our own and leave him with grandparents.

  40. Kim @ girlevolving on March 30, 2012 at 5:48 am

    I think it depends what your dreams and expectations are for the trip, because they’ll be very different with a baby or just the two of you. Both have their perks!

  41. Jessica@Fruit and Veggie Tales on March 30, 2012 at 8:28 am

    I completely understand your fears and concerns about traveling with a baby but it’s actually so much easier than it seems like it would be! We were so scared to travel with our daughter that we didn’t go anywhere….we had lots of food allergy problems, she had a strict sleep schedule and if it were at all messed with, she would go on a week long sleep strike. We were nervous. We finally traveled by plane with her at 15 months and me 6 months pregnant with my son….it was the BEST trip ever! She had so much fun and was so distracted by all the new stuff that she didn’t care she was sleeping someplace new. We researched everything first so we knew our hotel was kid friendly and had a washer/dryer so we could do laundry if necessary. I read some baby travel tips ~picking out all of their outfits and putting them plus matching shoes in individual baggies then smooshing the baggies like mini space bags ~that was a big help! Plus, at the age Livi will be, you won’t need to worry about whether or not you can find food for her because she’ll be breast/formula feeding which is easy peasy! Just call the airline to let them know you’ll be traveling with an infant. Their liquids rule is different for children but they’ll want to vapor test any bottles you bring with you. You can pack enough bottles with a clear ice pack for the trip. If you can’t get an ice pack on the plan, you could ask the stewardiss(sp?) to put some in the fridge for you. She’ll get little wings for her scrapbook, soooo cute AND….she flies completely FREE! You just need to make sure her passport is good which could take a while so start now! Oh my goodness, I hope you go and I’m so excited for you and super jealous at the same time! ITALY!!!!!!! There are so many travel tips that are great ideas, you could even do a blog post asking for tips from other moms on travel, it is so helpful to see what worked and what didn’t from other mamas. The ONE thing that could mess you up big time is the time change but there is a way you can fix that without having to deal with the jet lag. In applied kinesiology, you use the acupressure points to do things in the body but without needles (great stuff) anyway, there is a way you can reset your biological clock. (Livi’s too of course!) It sounds super weird but it totally works and is so safe for babies! As soon as you get to your destination before you even stand up on the plane, you take your right hand and point your fingers toward your ribcage at the hollow under your arm and just above your ribs. Tap that spot with all four right fingers 25 times then pull gently on both ears simultaneously from top to bottom. Done. I know it sounds odd but we have used it so many times since our doc told us about it and it’s amazing! I couldn’t find a link to show you how to do it but you could search applied kinesiology or muscle testing and biological clock and see if you find anything. Lifesaver!

  42. Erin Y on March 30, 2012 at 9:04 am

    A vacation with a child is totally doable. We are the type of people who have our kid on a strict schedule and are crazy about that sort of stuff. By 4 months he had a set bedtime and by 6 months he had 2 solids naps a day. Still we traveled quite a bit with him his first year. We live in the Washington DC area and went to Florida for a week when he was 8 months old. Then when he was 11 months we went to Northern California (Bug Sur and San Francisco). At 2 we hit Wyoming/Grant Teton national park. Not to mention all the trips to NC and Boston to visit family. The trips were different than our pre-kid vacations, we could take the extra long hikes we like and while not as relaxing they were still refreshing. It is always nice to get away from the realities of life and work, and enjoy uninterrupted time together as a family. Our son won’t remember any of the trips we took, but he had fun. He loved Wyoming and hiking along the trails. He may not remember how he spent hours throwing rocks in a lake surrounded by the most amazing scenery and how happy he was doing it, but I always will and the picture always make me smile.

    I am also the type who freaks out before every trip and worries how our son will handle the travel and flights. Still he always amazes me and adapts better than I do. Kids adapt so much better than you’d ever imagine. When traveling with kids I have found that staying in a place that has a kitchen and separate bedroom for the child is a huge help. We also loved the Kidco peapod for a portable travel bed. Much easier to pack than a pack and play.

  43. Vanessa N on March 30, 2012 at 9:17 am

    My sisters and sibling-in-laws ALL have children (although I don’t) so this is advice from them. The younger they are, the better to travel. My brother-in-law just did a flight from Japan to Minneapolis and back with his six month old and the baby was fussy for a TOTAL of 30 min. on a 13 hr. flight. If you wait until they are a little bit older, they’ll want to run around, need more toys to entertain them, etc. My sister flew with her baby at one month for a 4 hr. flight and the baby slept the whole time. Same with my sister-in-law doing the same flight with a 3 month old. My parents did a trip to Spain when my sister was 18 months and they said it was HELL. She cried and ran all over the place the entire trip. Hope this helps! Take the trip now b/c you never know what the future holds… don’t postpone the things you REALLY want to do!

  44. Rebecca on March 30, 2012 at 10:05 am

    Max has already stayed in four hotels and been to the grandparents 3x. So far no issues! The pack and play is super awesome for traveling!

    My advice:
    – take what you dont use out of the pack and play. We don’t use the mobile or change table so it stays out
    – pack the night before and make lists. Pregnancy/Mom brain = forgets lots of things!
    – have a “overnight” bag already made up that you don’t necessarily have to unpack ever, except to wash: blankets, swaddle me, wash clOths, soap, etc. you know the things you probably have a billion of anyways? It saves a bit of time!
    – plan your driving/flying in terms of feeding. If you are driving plan a route that includes stopping no later than the 3 hr mark (I stop at 2.5 hrs). Obviously baby needs food, but she also needs to get out of the carseat. Plan on being out of the car for at least 45min to an hour.

  45. Carrie on March 30, 2012 at 10:06 am

    I’m not a mom, but I’ve been to Italy a couple times, and when you mentioned taking a baby Livi with you, my eyes grew wide, lol. My husband and I alone have a hard enough time getting comfortable on a 9-hour flight, dealing with jetlag (you always arrive early morning!), public transportation and not breaking our ankles trying to walk on the ancient roads. I can’t even imagine hauling a stroller and trying to stick to my baby’s schedule while immersing myself in European culture ( like eating dinner at 9 pm).

    Not saying it can’t be done–Emily at the Daily Garnish is a great example of this. She took 4-month Cullen to Hawaii and with those flights, it might as well be international!

  46. Lori on March 30, 2012 at 10:27 am

    oh man I remember our first time taking a road trip (3.5hrs) when my son was maybe 3 months…lol it was a mini disaster, but in a funny way. Just make sure to bring extra, extra of everything!

  47. Kelli on March 30, 2012 at 11:12 am

    My baby is still in utero, but….when I was tiny my parents travelled with me tons. We lived in Ireland when I was born, but I know that before I was 2 I had been to England, Scottland, the US, & all over Ireland. They travelled very light, used a baby carrier or a really tiny umbrella stroller for carrying me, & didn’t bring things like pak n’plays, etc (which probably didn’t even exist then). I slept on pillows on the floor or in a drawer like someone else mentioned. My mom washed out our clothes at night & hung them to dry so we didn’t have many with us, & I was cloth diapered which also cut down on luggage space. It’s totally possible! Not many kids can say that they became international travellers before their first birthday, I say go for it. And for what it is worth, my parents continued their travels even when they had 3 young kids. We spent the summer in Israel when I turned 7, my middle sis was 4, & my youngest sister was 1. My parents say it took extra planning, but it was really manageable & wonderful. Kids adjust so if you start them travelling young by the time they are preschoolers they know the drill & are pretty good on planes. Or…that’s how it was in my family anyway.

  48. Kelli on March 30, 2012 at 11:13 am

    One more thing- you should be able to rent a car seat if you rent a car. But in Europe public transportation is great so you shouldn’t have to worry about it. She can sit on your lap on the trains or buses!

  49. Helen on March 30, 2012 at 11:24 am

    I think you should go for it. A friend of mine has a three year old and a 4 month old, and they just got back from a trip to Hawaii. They said that it was WAY more work traveling with the three year old than it was with the baby. It seems like if you wait to take a trip, you could be waiting a looooong time.

  50. Sarah on March 30, 2012 at 11:40 am

    You’ll certainly get different opinions, but this is a special trip for you and your husband. I vote take it alone and enjoy each other as a married couple instead of as parents. It seems you have great grandparents who are ready, willing, and able to watch your baby. Thankfully, my husband and I have the same kind so we’ve been able to take some international trips just the two of us. Certainly, we miss the children while we’re gone but the bond our kids have with the grandparents is amazong because they’ve 24/7 time together. Grandma visiting for a couple hours is not the same as spending a week with grandma. You and your hubby will come back rested and renewed . Everybody wins! I think it’s so sad when parents lose sight of their relationship with each other. But to each her own of course! I was comfortable leaving my babies with grandparents when they were 7-months old but only you can judge what your own reaction will be.

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