Babies? In a car? Going farther than Target? Are you nuts?
Nah! While on my own little road trip of my own to South LA, I am so thankful to have J over at The Workaholic Momma posting here today. Be sure to stop by and check out her adorable Addie who just turned one in style with a colorful ducky birthday party. You know we like ducks around these parts, so we can't help but like our friends over there! We all learn "the hard way" how to maneuver through this journey called life as first time parents. You live; you learn; you read blogs to find out how it's done!
I wanted to start by thanking the wonderful Cajun Cowgirl for sharing her blog with me today and letting me share the tale of two trips and hopefully some helpful tips on traveling with a wee one!!! I just LOVE reading her blog and getting all sorts of food and craftiness inspiration plus who doesn't love seeing all of the updates about the Sheriff..he's just too cute for words!!!
Some lessons you have to learn yourself...
That's the moral what I'm about to say here...but here's the story -
As a new momma...I think I can say that until baby #2 is here right?!?!....anyhow, as a new momma I didn't really do a very good job of planning for the worst case scenario on a 7 hour road trip. It was the day after Hurricane Irene had swept over our neck of the woods and due to the non-event it was for our house after some pretty dire predictions I suppose I was feeling like I really had luck on my side. We had planned to spend the week in South Carolina and I was a in a major rush to head out of town as we were already a day behind. I packed everything my pea-size brain could think of at that very moment and relied heavily on the fact that my babe "loves car rides and her car seat - we'll be fine." And we were...for about 2 hours...and then the wheels fell of the wagon. Screaming fits - 5 minute naps - restlessness - yelling - REPEAT. Trying our best to make good time we opted for the drive through at dinner and a few very quick stops along the way for diaper changes. The Elmo song blared through our speakers...every toy in the diaper bag and within reach(hello, can i please have a pair of go-go gadget arms) was given in hopes that something would work. Nada...nothing...zilch - this girl was done. We had about 30 minutes of success with allowing her to rip up some random paper I had in my purse (she loves to shred so as a last resort we tried that) but the trip down was miserable...for e.v.e.r.y.o.n.e!
Fast forward 5 days and the hubs and I were dreading the return trip. Like the little geeks we are...we studied what we did on the way down - how we would do things different and put together a little game plan. In short...IT WORKED!!! Here's what we did - instead of leaving at noon - right after her nap - we left at 2pm - right BEFORE her nap. We tried really hard to wear her out as much as possible - we chased, played, sang, and danced - anything to wear her out so she would nap well. The first hour and 45 minutes was great - she slept and we drove. When she awoke - I fed her and gave her a few toys to play with. She was good for about the next hour or so and then started to get a little restless - the paper - I gave her some more...we had another 30 minutes of happiness. Things started to get dicey at this point - which was fine and well within the plan - we had made it to 6pm and we were ready to STOP for dinner. No drive through...we got out of the car...went into the restaurant and ate dinner. It gave Addie a great break to stretch her legs...play with us....expend some energy and after about an hour we got back on the road. By this time it was 7pm - which is only anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour from her bed time. And like clock work...about 45 minutes into the next leg of trip she was out for the night. We got home around 10pm...moved her from the car seat to the crib and called it a night....with a slight grin that with some careful planning we had figured it out...or maybe we just got lucky:)
I'm certainly no expert...but this worked for us...and had we listened to friends and family to begin with our trip down would have looked much like our trip back and probably been alot better for all parties involved.