I’m not saying I’m an expert at travelling with an infant/toddler, but I have definitely discovered a few techniques to make life easier on the go and figured out what items are absolutely necessary to have on hand. During this PCS Adventure, my family has been without household goods for 48 days, spent 3 days in airports and on planes, and lived in hotels for 26 days. It has been a learning experience for us all and I think everyone was pushed to their limit at one point during this adventure. We are finally in our new house, but still do not have household goods so we are back to “roughing it” in our own home. I honestly do not think we would have made it this far without the following items:
- Travel High Chair – (My Little Seat Infant Travel High Chair) This item is great because not only does it fold up and fit in my diaper bag, but it also basically fits any chair with a back. You simply slide it over the back of the chair, place child in seat, then tie them up! I am keeping this in my diaper bag every time we go out now because I have noticed not all of the restaurants here in Japan offer high chairs for children. My LO can sit on her own just fine, I just don’t trust her to not wiggle right off the seat.
- Travel Crib – (Lotus Travel Crib and Portable Baby Playard) This is an absolute must-have if you plan on travelling and staying in a hotel, friend’s house, hostel, etc. with an infant/toddler. This travel crib takes about 15 seconds to set-up, it has backpack portability, and fits as a carry-on. We took this with us on the plane and used it in the airport overnight. There was not much sleeping happening, but it was nice to have a closed off, safe place for our daughter to lay down. When using it in the hotel, I unzipped the front part during the day to allow her access to her sleeping area whenever she liked. There were several days when she would just walk in and lay herself down for a nap or take a book in and read quietly to herself.
- Board Books – My daughter LOVES books! I packed a couple of her favorites and would give her a different one periodically throughout our trip to keep her from getting bored with them. It only entertains her for about 5 minutes, but that is much better than nothing!
- Sound Machine – (myBaby Soundspa Lullaby Sound Machine and Projector) At both of the hotels we stayed in, the baby’s crib was right next to our bed. Having a sound machine was great for drowning out any unfamiliar sounds that are inherent when staying at a hotel and also help drown out any noise DH and I made when moving about the room before our own bedtime.
- Dry Shampoo – These last two items are not necessary for travelling with an infant, but are my personal favorites when travelling and living out of hotels. I hate showering at hotels. The water is always hard (no matter where we are) and makes my skin super itchy. I use dry shampoo between washes to help keep my hair looking fresh/clean. This came in very handy the night we arrived in Japan. I used it to help freshen up/revive my hair before going to the Officer’s Club for our official Hailing that took place two hours after we landed!
- Clinique 3 Step Skin Care System – I am not a rep for Clinique! It just happens to be a product that I have used since high school and really love. Number 7 could really be any skin care system that you use and love. I think this is a must-have because no matter how exhausted and disgusting I feel, if I wash my face and clean up a bit, I instantly look and feel better.
So those are MY must-have items! I have met some Moms over the last couple of weeks who have spent more time in hotels and without household goods than we have and I am very interested to hear what items helped them survive. If you have any must-haves that should be added to my list, please post in the comments!