Our family recently took a trip up to Portland, OR to see my best friend get married. It was a wonderful wedding that I have been really looking forward to! However, to get there involved flying with an 8 month old. Now, neither John nor myself love flying, so this was a trip that was planned and prepared for in the biggest way. I can’t tell you how many times I googled or searched pinterest on tips for flying with babies. In the long run it was all unnecessary because he did great, of course. Here are some things that we did to make traveling with a baby run smoothly:
1. We packed ahead. All bags were packed and ready to go a day ahead. This may seem like an obvious one, but not with me. I thrive on last minute packing. Or maybe I thrive on procrastinating? Well, either way… 🙂 When packing I made sure there were pacifiers, snacks, change of clothes, toys, and books in checked and carry on luggage just in case.
2. We took Grammo.
We have no shame in grabbing a grandparent (or 3) when going anywhere with this little man. He loves them! We also feel that a 3:1 adult to child ratio is optimal.
3. Divide and conquer. John is a great logistical planner. He made sure we had a place to stay, car to drive, rides to and from the airport, food to eat, and money to use. (Not to mention muscle for those heavy bags. 🙂 ) I love the thrill of getting through the airport in the quickest and easiest fashion. I collected all tickets, ID’s, and luggage and was the front man for the team when checking in. Grammo provided entertainment and snacks as all seasoned moms seem to have mastered. It worked seamlessly.
4. We came prepared to ease the stress level of our fellow flyers. We’ve heard a lot about how stressful a crying baby can be for moms and dads and the worries about bothering other passengers. Together we came up with a cute little kit to hand out to those seated around us.
There’s a poem, m&m’s, and ear plugs. Seriously, who could get irritated when they have been given m&m’s? This little kit was a big hit!
In case you can not read it, the poem reads:
It’s my first time flyin’
And I’m really tryin’
Cause dad says there’s nothing to fear.
Now I do have some toys
I’m gonna try and be a big boy
But I haven’t even reached one year.
My parents brought you treats
While you’re stuck in your seats,
And a couple ear plugs and a smile.
Please know that I’m sorry
I’m not tryin’ to be naughty
If I happen to cry for awhile
5. We stayed calm and went with the flow. I had heard that all you have to do is nurse the baby (or bottle feed, whatever means to get the kiddo to suck to help with pressure in the ears) during take off and landing. James (for the first time ever!) wasn’t interested in eating. He was, however, super interested in everything around him. He also wanted to make sure he was held by all of us, giving him the best opportunity to experience the most of this new adventure.
And there you have it. I’m pretty sure we could have done it with 2 adults, a book, and a pacifier but that is all in hindsight. Had we not brought everything, I am sure there would have been wailing, diaper disasters, and an entire upset airplane. 😉
Looking forward to our next trip!