Tuesday, July 30, 2013


About a month ago we took our first major family vacation since well before our kids were born.  We went to Ocean City, New Jersey, and had a great time.   

It was the first plane ride for both Ryken and Aven, and it was from one coast to another!  I watched so many great You Tube videos about tips and tricks for traveling with young children, and I also asked a few friends who had traveled with their own kids for suggestions.  I came away with a wealth of ideas, which made traveling a better experience, and helped everyone to do really well on the trip.

Some of the "clutch" ideas were: taking plenty of snacks, tucking away beloved toys for a few weeks before the trip and unleashing them on the plane, buying new toys and travel games and bringing them out when needed (Dollar Tree and Walmart sales were great for this), kid headphones to use for tech time (I used both my laptop and iPad for movies and apps with both kids), taking a travel pillow (this was really helpful for support for both Aven and I as we napped on the plane and in the car), plenty of new coloring books and crayons, both new and well-loved children's books, and taking their favorite blankets and buddies on the plane. 

I was so pleasantly surprised at how well both kids did on the plane, and on the whole trip.  Though we did battle some health and motion sickness issues, it didn't take away from an otherwise wonderful trip.  One of the things that I put together for traveling was a set of what we have come to call "sticker packs".  I bought a couple of sturdy zip pencil pouches and filled them with lots and lots and lots of stickers for both kids.  I also added a notepad and a couple of pencils to each one.  These were pretty helpful during the trip, but they have become hugely helpful here at home.  We use them most often for lengthy drives or waiting at restaurants or doctors offices or things like that. 

The kids love drawing pictures and putting stickers in their notepads, and the activity keeps them busy far longer than I had imagined it would.  And it is fun to see their artwork and creativity progress, too!  I was so thankful to have had access to so many ideas from experienced moms for our trip, and beyond.  There were so many helpful suggestions.  Hopefully you may find some of the ideas I presented here helpful, too.

There are plenty more photos of our trip on Flickr, so head there if you'd like to check them out.

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