Anyone who says they haven't traveled once where their little one screams non-stop is definitely lying.
Experienced parents think out of the box when it comes to entertaining little ones, even long after the backpack full of toys stops working.
- Bandages or stickers can keep toddlers busy for hours. Just accept the fact that you may be covered in Dora before you reach your destination.
- Toilet paper roll has multiple uses, even silly dresses for dolls and/or headbands to make the little ones laugh. And kids love blowing on one piece and watching it fall, even babies.
- Cocktail? No, not for Baby—or even you. But one mom offers to buy a drink for others seated around them to help make the flight a bit more relaxing.
- Along the same lines, be sure to have snacks for everyone in your group. Hungry humans equals grouchy humans, and you're going to need as many people in your corner as possible.
- If teething, bring Baby gloves soaked in formula or breast milk (then freeze). These can be stored in an ice pack bag. Place on Baby's hands and let them gnaw away. Silence.
When you reach your final destination, Andrea, mom of two from Boston, recommends having a little piece of home to help make a smooth transition. "When I was traveling with young babies and toddlers, I used to bring crib bedding from cribs and beds that smelled like home, the same lullaby CD I played every night, and the same nightlight. I tried to keep the night-time routine as close to home as possible so that everyone would sleep well and we could all enjoy our time away from home!"
Finally, while there's not much you can do to prevent delayed flights, lost car seats, broken strollers, and unsupportive passengers, Michele says it's not just diapers and clothes you should plan to have extras of but extra patience and a sense of humor. And it doesn't hurt if you have a partner along to carry some of the weight, physically, mentally, and emotionally.