11.06.2017

Traveling with Kids | My Top Ten Tips



Today's video has been highly requested. It seems that many families are interested in how to handle traveling with small children. I have a lot of experience in this area and today I offer my top ten tips for you.

We have three children, ages 5, 7 and 17 months. I've traveled everywhere from England with my two toddler daughters alone, all the way to Japan with my 3 month old baby boy... alone too!

This time, my husband was with us and we were with all three kids. So whether you have a short flight over Thanksgiving weekend, a long-haul flight or even just a road trip, I think you can benefit from my advice in today's video.

Here is a short summary of my ten points in the video:

1. Plan as much as you can! Then be prepared to throw your plans out the window when things change :)

2. Be prepared with snacks/ activity books (see my suggestion below).

3. If you allow your children to use an iPad or tablet, deprive them of it for a few weeks before the flight to make
it a special treat.

4. Have your children bring a backpack on the plane with their own personal items: activity books, water, snack,
airplane pillow and headphones. Make sure they know they're responsible for it.

5. For babies, make sure you have different ways to carry them. Moby wrap or baby bjorn in addition to a stroller.

6. Have a sense of humor! Laughter is one of the best ways to dissolve stress.

7. Emphasize that you are a family team and that we all need to think about other people before we
think about ourselves.

8. Totally surrender. You won’t be able to relax with a toddler on an airplane. If you do, it’s a pleasant surprise!


9. Employ patience. Extreme patience.

10. Do what comforts you and try to focus on why you are traveling in the first place.

These are the three items I mentioned in the video:


Never Bored Kid Book age 5-6 These activity books are really impressive. We've tried dozens of them and these are definitely the best! Also age 6-7, age 7-8, age 8-9, age 4-5



Kids airplane neck pillow shaped like a dachshund. These pillows were so welcome on the flight. The airplane no longer supplies pillows so I was grateful we brought these for the girls.


Lil Gadgets kids headphones Again, the airlines don't supply headphones. I find that these, which are made for children's heads work a lot better than the standard adult earphones.

News

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Be sure to stop back on Thursday for a major announcement!

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On Instagram

Polish Your Poise with Madame Chic and a delightful lunch in Vintage Loving Celiac's Instagram post...



Comment of the Week
Jody writes: LOVE the Jord wood watches. I've been eyeing wood watches for some time and now you share this brand which is beautiful. Thanks for the opportunity to learn more about Jord and to possibly win!

The girls' quilts are so cute! I'm in the process of making a quilt for my newest granddaughter so I have a great appreciation for quilts.

You really must make your own granola. It is SO delish. A good one is on the website: jennycancook.com. She's got some videos that are so much fun to watch and her recipes are all excellent.

Fall favorites:
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*Making no knead breads. See jennycancook.com again. She's got several knockout bread recipes that I've been trying. The cinnamon rolls too! YUM!

God bless you and your family. ~Jody


Hi Jody, Thank you for sharing JennyCanCook with us. What a wonderful site!

Before we close, we offer our prayers for everyone affected by the horrible shooting in Texas on Sunday. Our hearts and thoughts are with you.

Today I would love to know... what is your advice for traveling with small children? Do you have any triumphs to share with us? Any horror stories? Let me know and your comment could be chosen as comment of the week on The Daily Connoisseur. See you back on Thursday for a major announcement!


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11 comments:

Jo K said...

Hi Jennifer,
I wish I could have seen this video years ago when my children were small. I think travelling with a 1 to 2 year old is about the most difficult time, especially if they are wiggly. As soon as my children reached about 3, the whole thing became much easier.

Anyway, one tip to add might be to take a change of clothes for yourself in your carry-on case. When my daughter was about 13 months, we flew to Spain and my daughter became travel sick and vomited all over me. I had spare clothes for her but nothing for me until we landed and only baby wipes to clean up with. It was not pleasant.
Best wishes from London!

Janine said...

My #1 tip for traveling with small children...it's all about the snacks!! We have traveled from east coast USA to Australia twice with small children, and we're doing it again in five weeks with a 4 yo, 3 yo, and 1 yo. We bring other items as well, but we rely heavily on a supply of fun and assorted snacks that our kids don't usually get to have in order to distract, pass the time and just make the trip even more special. Traveling long-haul really is a grand adventure and a wonderful time to hunker down together and enjoy each other's company. There's nowhere else to go and nothing else to do but be together. So far, we've thoroughly enjoyed long-haul travel with our children.

PS: As I type this comment, I can hear my 3 and 4 yo children playing "go to Australia" in the next room. They are packing and unpacking their backpacks! They just can't wait!

Amanda Garcia said...

Hi Jennifer!

I love your tips! I fly constantly but am taking my first 'family flight' next month. I always have a small bag with chapstick, lotion, ponytail holders, and small amount of medicines I might need (allergy pills, Advil, Excederine, etc.). I also like to bring a small bag with a few of my favorite teas and raw sugar packets.

Welcome home!
Amanda

Gwen Browning said...

I love these tips and agree with them all.
My girls are a similar age to yours at 8 and 4, and love travelling and flying especially. It is about the magic of it. When it gets turbulent my children love the "roller-coaster" experience, and aeroplane food can be a "midnight feast" or TV dinner. Seeing the excitement from their eyes helps so much. One thing that also works really well for us is to buy a magazine at the airport on the way out so they choose their treat and have something new for the journey, and save a new activity book for the long flight home. Always something fresh that way.
I have been really enjoying your videos from abroad, although I'm a little disappointed that you didn't get the chance to travel from England up to Scotland. I am sure that you would have so much to share. Maybe another time?....

Ladylike said...

Hello Jennifer,

Welcome back to your home! Thanks for sharing those excellent tips. In particular, your "totally surrender" tip struck a chord. I think that's a great tip for new motherhood in general! I will look into those activity books for my niece and nephew. We will be traveling to see them around Christmas, and the books seem like the right level for their age groups.
I do have a travel horror story which has a happy ending. I was traveling across the country alone with my 18 month old toddler, coming home from the funeral of a family friend. We were traveling standby (my father was a captain at the time). I needed to go to San Francisco, but the only flight with any space on it was to LA. So I boarded that flight for the lack of a better option, and we were seated in first class since that's where there was a seat. My toddler was wiggly as you said. I couldn't keep hold of him, and he unfortunately grabbed the roll off someone's tray. The flight attendant didn't have a sense of humor. Instead of giving the other passenger another roll, I was asked to move to the rear of the airplane. I felt utterly humiliated after my sincere struggle with my son, and I was very emotional, as we were returning from a funeral, and I didn't even want to be on that particular flight. I couldn't stop crying in my seat in the rear of the aircraft. But then something happened which amazed me. My toddler, who couldn't yet speak, being only 18 months old, saw me crying and gave me a kiss! I was stunned, as I never knew he could be so perceptive to understand my feelings and respond in a comforting way. My son is now 17 years old, and he remains a sensitive and caring young man. That dreadful "cloudy" day turned out to have a silver lining, as I became aware of my son's kind nature.

Warm best,
Alexandra

Ellen said...

Hello! My 4 children are now grown but we traveled quite a bit when they were small. Here are some additional tips:
1. I always brought small and inexpensive "activity presents" which were wrapped with lots of tape. These were handed out every couple of hours.

Ellen said...

Sorry, hit the indent tab.
2. If you pay for a toddler to have their own seat, bring your own car seat to strap into the airplane. This keeps them "trapped" and they are much safer. If it doesn't fit into the seat, it can easily be given to the crew to be put into the baggage hold.
3. Take young children's shoes off so that it makes seat back kicking less annoying to the other travelers.
4. Do not apologize for marathon electronic use...the entire plane will thank you for entertaining your children quietly!
5. Exercise your children in airports before you board the plane. Some airports actually have play areas for children. Otherwise, walking or running in non crowded areas can deplete their energy.
6. I Spy books are also great for occupying kids. Their are some for young children, too.
7. Know your kids limitations, some museums just may not be things to do if you think that you are going to be saying "Don't Touch" the entire time.
8. The National Parks had a Junior Ranger program where activity books were freely acquired and the child would have to complete different tasks. Then, once accomplished, the child would present their completed book to any ranger station and they would be recognized by a Park Ranger for their accomplishment in a short ceremony (sometimes they would even get to wear a ranger hat) and given a badge. Great fun!

Ellen said...

A couple more...
9. Feed babies on take off and when landing as this can help with ear pressure problems. Older children can sip juice or water or chew gum.
10. One can also buy a product in drug stores called "ear planes" which are soft rubber ear plugs that may be helpful with some children.



Gloria Gail said...

Make those plans. But don't get too attached to them. Great advice for all of life's endeavors. Thank you, Jennifer.

The Daily Connoisseur said...

Ladies, thank you for your comments on traveling with small children. I love your additional tips! Alexandra your story warmed my heart. It's amazing how perceptive babies can be! What a great story. Sending love to you all! Jennifer xx

Maureen said...

Thank you so much for this timely post, Jennifer! I am traveling to the east coast with my 15 month old son next week, and this is exactly the pep talk I needed. :)

Happy Thanksgiving.

 
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