As we all heard and saw in Wes’s 12-week update post traveling with him was not as easy as we thought. Turns out our little nugget isn’t cut out for life on the road just yet and therefore cried a LOT, hardly slept and required constant attention from us during the driving portions of the trip. Not that we minded giving it, but road trips aren’t as much fun from the backseat with a screaming baby. Just sayin’.
Good thing hot fresh apple fritters are always good to soothe exhausted mamas…
Not that this experience defines all road trips with babies; in fact Anna and sweet Lila (she’s just a few weeks younger than Wes) had a great trip last week! Just goes to show you that every kiddo is different. I just wish it would have been easier to get Wes to stay asleep in the car and to sleep in his pack & play crib during his daily naps.
BUT we’ve learned from this experience and although I’m a bit nervous about traveling again with him, I am also excited to see how we can all grow from this!
- If your baby is used to sleeping in a swing/bed/whatever it’s best to try to bring that along. Wes takes all of his naps in his swing, but we left it behind because we didn’t want to use up precious cargo space. Knowing what I know now I would have gladly packed less and made adjustments to fit that swing in the car – it would have been a lifesaver!
- Babies don’t need a lot of clothes. I knew this going into it but still overpacked for Wes anyway. I suppose it depends on where you’re going, but we were with family the whole time meaning we had access to washer/dryers at all points during the trip. I would have packed maaaaaaaaaybe 3 outfits, 1 blanket, 1 towel and the diapers/wipes instead of the numerous outfits I did bring.
- A breast pump is a lifesaver (if you’re breastfeeding). I didn’t want to banish myself to another room every time I needed to feed Wes, but I also didn’t want to fuss with the awkward nursing cover in front of everyone either. Pumping and feeding really helped to take some of the stress off of his feeding times and also made it so that others could feed him too. YAY for giving mom a break!
- What we packed for Wes (besides clothing): diapers, wipes, baby shampoo & lotion, books, toys, the Boppy, Pack & Play, diaper bag, breast pump, bottles, pacifier, blankets, towels, washcloths, stroller & carseat, fingernail clippers and the suction bulb. If I could do it over again I wouldn’t have brought as many books or toys, but would have added the swing (duh) and more wipes.
- Pacifiers are your friend. Wes has never taken a pacifier and is still sort of finding his thumb, so we ended up holding the paci in his mouth until he fell asleep. It was fantastic because it really did help calm him down for the most part!
- You’ll always need more diapers than you think.
- You’ll always need more wipes than you think.
- Make sure you’re drinking a TON of water if you’re breastfeeding. If you’re like me it’s hard to drink a ton on the road without stopping a ton for potty breaks, so I just don’t drink much water until we get to our destination. If you’re breastfeeding though, water is 100% hugely necessary and you’ll likely be taking a ton of breaks anyway for the baby, so go for it. It’s better than a frustrated baby who isn’t getting as much milk as they’re used to!
- If you take your dogs AND a baby then I admire you. I missed our pups like crazy but looking back on it I just don’t know if we could have done it with them and Wes all together.
- Take pictures. Just trust me 🙂