When my daughter was a 12 month old- I distinctly remember getting into an all-out war of words with my husband- when upon reaching our destination (after a three hour car ride that involved endless spit-ups and a baby who would NOT stop crying) all the baby gear he’d promised he’d reserved for our hotel room wasn’t there. In other words- he’d forgotten to reserve all the accessories we’d need to make vacation with a baby( which is hardly a vacation) more palatable.
Fast forward 13 years and I am utterly amazed at all the cute and nifty items- a baby toting mama can pack up and bring with her, so that she NEVER ever has to rely on her husband or the kindness of strangers or for that mater shell out big bucks at a beach front resort whose inflated prices for a crib which would give any person a small heart attack.
So here dear mamas are a few of my favorite must haves if you find yourself BRAVELY traveling with your tot in tows and some helpful tips from Safety 1st consumer safety experts on “How to Survive the Holiday with Kids and a chance to win an Alpha Elite™ 65 Convertible Car Seat !
According to AAA last year 94.5 million people were on the roads, train tracks or in the skies during the holiday season. That’s a lot of people! Then add your own kids into the mix of congestion and for some it can mean holiday headaches. However, Safety 1st has some tips to help fight some of those headaches this season.
- Avoid peak travel days –Try not to fly or drive the days immediately before and after the actual holiday. Those are the busiest travel days. However, if you fly or take a train you might save money by traveling on the actual holiday, the roads are less congested too.
- Prepare your child for the trip – Holiday parties can be overwhelming with sensory overload. Especially for young children it’s good to talk about the upcoming trip days even weeks in advance. This will help him or her get excited about the journey. Show photos of family members or friends your child has not met yet, this way the new face might be a little familiar on arrival.
- “Are we there yet?” – To help avoid that dreaded phrase an hour into your six hour trip reserve a bag just for the kids, include books, toys, diapers a change of clothes and snacks. Pre-load a tablet or smartphone with kid friendly apps or games. If you are driving keep all necessary items such as wipes, hand sanitizer or tissues easy to reach in a second – there are times you may not want to be digging through the bottom of a bag for such items. The Safety 1st Car Door Sanitation Station is a great solution.
- Car Seats – If you are flying check to make sure your car seat is FAA certified. If it’s not clearly labeled contact the manufacture. For parents with older children the Safety 1st BoostAPack can double as a kid survival kit, it’s FAA certified, and will fit in the plane overhead bin.
If you are driving make sure your car seat is installed correctly. If it’s been awhile since you visited a car seat check, it’s recommended to check your seat with a Certified Child Safety Technician in advance of your trip. Safercar.gov is a great resource.
- Prepare the guest room – If your child will be sleeping in a Play Yard during the trip, use that for bed or nap time the entire week before. This will help him or her get used to a new sleep environment. Also if your infant or child sleeps better in a dark room or tends to wake up early with the morning light, bring garbage bags or dark fabric to tape over windows.
And here are FIVE 5 baby gear must haves when traveling with a tot in tow and a Safety 1st Air Protect + Car Seat Giveaway!
#1 : The Alpha Elite™ 65 Convertible Car Seat : With a harness rated to 65 pounds, the Alpha Elite Convertible Car Seat is helping parents keep their children safer in harnesses longer. As an extended-use car seat with superior comfort and convenience features, it’ll please parents and children alike through 3 separate stages: Rear-facing infant car seat, Forward-facing car seat with harness to 65 pounds, and Belt-positioning booster!
- Extended-use car seat
- Rear-facing 5-40 pounds
- Forward-facing 22-65 pounds
- Belt-positioning booster 40-100 pounds
- Side Impact Protection
- 5-point harness with Center Front Adjust
- QuickFit™ Harness System adjusts height from front in one easy step – never needs re-threading!
- 3-position recline, adjusts with one hand
- Removable infant head support
- Removable infant lumbar support
- Padded, pivoting armrests
- Removable cup/juice holder
- LATCH equipped
- Meets or exceeds Federal and ASTM Safety Standards
#2 The Friendly Pacifier from First Friends is the newest must-have in pacifiers, which combines a soothing pacifier with a plush toy to maximize security and comfort for baby. With its problem solving 2-in-1 design, Friendly Pacifier eliminates the need for multiple pacifiers by offering a simple solution a pacifier that attaches to a plush friend preventing the pacifier from being misplaced or lost. The Friendly Pacifier comes in a wide range of colors and characters including a monkey, lamb, pig, horse, bunny, bear, and puppy. Available at Babies R Us. Recommended for ages 0-6 months. MSRP $12.99.
#3 The Tidy Table Tray + Flexi Diner by bambinos Make meal time easier when you’re on-the-go with The Tidy Table Tray + Flexi Diner by bambinos, the first of its kind new portable table tray. Offering a large eating space and rounded rims to keep spills off the table, it’s easy to use and attaches to most tables via a rubber coated clip, keeping it securely locked in place. It is also BPA free, phthalate free and dishwasher safe.The Tidy Table Tray + Flexi-Diner features an easy on/off insert which can easily turn meal time into play time at anytime! MSRP $39.99
#4 The Wipebox by Uber Mom: The new Wipebox by UberMom is a super-convenient and inexpensive travel-size wipe container — equal parts stylish and durable. Featuring a bright and colorful European-inspired design with whimsical bold graphics, this reusable container is the perfect “accessory” to compliment your diaper bag. For the eco-minded parent, The Wipebox is helping to make a “greener” environment by eliminating the need for disposable packages and containers. For boys or girls, designs include: Green Football, Pink Crown, Aqua Bow, Orange Owl, and Blue Turtle. MSRP $6.99.
#5 Bebe Au Lait Nursing Cover: Need to nurse on the go- but don’t want everyone ogling your baby suckling? Well this veritable hooter-hider is a pretty stylish and discreet way to nurse, wherever and whenever and is actually a pretty cute fashion accessory to boot!
And one lucky reader will win an Alpha Elite™ 65 Convertible Car Seat! To win you must Follow The Staten Island Family on Facebook and leave a comment that you did so. For another chance to win you must FOLLOW @melissaSChapman on Twitter, TWEET this giveaway and leave a comment here that you did so. For another entry you can subscribe to our YOU TUBE CHANNEL and leave a comment here that you did so. For another entry you can Follow MelissaSChapmanWriter on Instagram and leave a comment here that you did so! For Another entry you can follow MelissaSChapman on Pinterest . And for another Entry you can follow Melissa Chapman on Google + and leave a comment here that you did so! GOOD LUCK giveaway ends December 12th!