Monday, March 9, 2015

tips & tricks

I am a huge planner, especially for vacations. I like to plan them at least 3+ months out - planning our daily routines and starting my packing list. This was the first vacation I haven't had a checklist by my side when packing. Yes I started one, but then I said scratch that. This vacation, I had just under a month to get ready for so with a toddler turning 20 months I used pinterest to help me find activities to keep him busy. Mind you his first time flying he did AMAZING! 4 different planes and only cried at take off and landing - BUT - he was 12 months old, he is way more active now! Here are some of the things that I packed in our bag! 

1. board book - this specific board book has different animal textures to keep Mason busy - he absolutely loves this book at home - so I put it in his bag, however there was no need for this book, it never came out of our bag.

2. quiet book -  my plan was to make a 10 page quiet book but when my attempt at cutting felt with a cricut failed miserably the book ended up being 6 pages(velcro shapes to match, counting beads, zippers, a road to drive a car on, and mr. potato head) - this was a big hit for Mason, actually the only toy he played with, it kept him busy for over an hour!

3. new toy - I got him a new coloring set from Target's Dollar Isle, he loves to color so I thought this would be a huge hit, even if he doesn't stay in the lines he loves anything to do with TMNT! - this did not make it out of the bag though.

4. Melrose/Young Living Essential Oil - I was told by my dear friend Katie that his would help with flying, however with our short trip I wasn't able to order it so she let me borrow hers. This works amazing, I put it on myself and Mason so that it would help with our ears, let me tell you - this oil works!!

5. Velcro Popsicle Sticks - This idea I also got from my dear friend Katie, a great-easy activity for Mason to do on the plane that would be quiet. I was had so much fun getting this ready I knew he would love it. - however this as well did not make it out of the bag. He has had fun playing with them since we got home!

6. Lavender/Young Living Essential Oil - This is what we put on every night when we go to bed to help us sleep. The first flight we sat next to a flight attendant going to visit her mom, my thoughts - great, this lady already deals with screaming kids and now she may have to sit next to one. My thoughts were wrong, We had a 630pm flight which didn't leave until 720pm Mason had been up since 7am with only an hour nap so at about 830pm we rubbed some lavender on his feet, he cried a total of 7 minutes while trying to fall asleep- yes I timed it to see how long his crying would last. When we got off the plane that lady next to me said how amazing he did -coming from a flight attendant this would make any mom happy! On the flight home, he cried for a total of 12 minutes again trying to fall asleep. I'd say Mason is like his mom and loves to fly!

7.I-Spy Bag - This was a bag that I already had from years ago. I thought great quiet toy, but again Mason never even saw this toy!

8. Zantac - This is the only prescription that we still "use" - Matt has a huge fear of flying - he gets sick for days/weeks before a trip, has night mares and  just doesn't rest. He only takes this an hr before our flight departs but without this we would not be able to take vacations. We are working on testing some Young Living Essential Oils that will be just as effective but until then we keep this in the cupboard until our next trip.

9. Water Bottles -Not Pictured- Must have, empty your water bottle and put it in your bag to keep you and baby/toddler hydrated - water fountains all over the airport and they give you water on-board the plane!

10. Snacks -Not Pictured- although not all toys were played with, all snacks were gone by the time we got home! our snacks we packed were:
--> GoGo Squeez - applesauce on the go - Mason had never had these, he had applesauce before but he thought these were so awesome! - Big hit!
--> Mott's All Natural Fruit Snacks -  Mason loves fruit snacks and they were small and easy to deal with, no mess!
-->Veggie Straws - Mason also loves these and they were also something easy to pack, store and deal with!

Although I didn't have a plan for each day I knew three things we wanted to do and we were able to cross them all off our "list" - visit to the zoo, visit to the beach(aka.giant sand box) and a visit to a children's museum. Mason loved them all! We also all loved the 50degree weather on their "cold days" and the high 70degree weather on the nice days! 

Hope our 10 tricks and tips that helped us help you in your future travel!