do you travel with your little ones? do you have trouble with adjusting them to different time zones? settling in at night in a new place? deal with night wakings when you are in a new environment? if you answered yes to any or all of the above questions than this blog is for you!! i travel lots with my kids because i am from the united states and we live in canada. that being said we go as a family two times a year. i wish i could say it was a short jaunt just from vancouver to portland, but unfortunately my husband happened to be from toronto. therefore it is a long haul from east to west coast, which makes for not only a long, long day of travel, but also the issue of time change. travel as adults without kids can make for a long day and tiresome, but at the same time a joy to just sit back relax, read trash magazines, sip a latte, watch a movie, maybe even sleep! all things you don’t get to do much of with little ones onboard with you! rather you don’t read at all, you chug or spill most of your latte, don’t watch the tv and you may get the opportunity to drift off for a short cat nap if your infants/toddlers happen to sleep! two totally opposite scenarios, but i guess we all knew this before we had kids!
as much as the scenario with kids seems less relaxing it doesn’t have to be! i traveled lots with my first and now we have ventured to portland for christmas and were away for two weeks. hudson and beckett were both amazing on the flights as they are very well rested kids all the time. by taking them into a long tiring day, they have the capability to hold it together. by sleep training your kids properly…everything in life will be easier!!
when you fly to a time zone that is behind you it is best to try and take a mid-day flight as you will need to try and keep them awake longer once you arrive. with toddlers this isn’t as difficult as they are thrilled to show off for family, friends, and just check out the new surroundings! for infants when they want to sleep, there is just no keeping them up! what i suggest is when you arrive to the new location, put them down for an afternoon nap. this will feel like your home bedtime, so wake them after an hour or so. then keep them up for a bit, do dinner, bath, etc and then re-create the new bedtime. to help infants settle it helps to bring anything they may usually snuggle with in their crib, a mirror if they use one, or whatever they are used to looking at, and take off the sheet they were sleeping on the night before so when they lay to sleep in the new environment the smells and usual crib surrounding are familiar.
for toddlers i would just bring anything they are used to snuggling with as well and don’t worry about the sheet. smell is not as critical for them at this stage. i suggest if you are the one that usually does bedtime routine, that you do it the first few nights until they are adjusted and more comfortable. this will help ease their stress and feel more like home. stick to the same routine as much as possible.
travel can literally be a ‘joy’ with your little ones if you take the extra time and steps to help make them more comfortable and more familiar in their new surroundings!! happy future travels!