We took our first family vacation last summer. Lola was 10 months old and we went to the lake for the the Fourth of July. Prior to this, we made many long road trips back and forth to my parents’ house, but this was different because our cabin wasn’t prepped ahead of time with baby gear.
Lola sleeps much better in a very dark room, so we created a makeshift canopy with a comforter and some telescoping pole devices my husband found. We had to roll across two beds ninja style to get to the bathroom while she was sleeping to avoid destroying the contraption.
I also had to remember to pack Flip and bumGenius 4.0 covers for swim diapers (learn more about that here), sunscreen, floaties, a hat and her Babiators. We tried to maintain some sort of sleep schedule, which meant hanging out on the porch while Lola napped.
During our vacation, we had to make a few adjustments to meal time (i.e.the bed doubles as a high chair!) and bath time (the lake kind of counts, right?) but we had such a relaxing and enjoyable weekend.
We were staying in a tiny town, so between naps we would visit a place or two such as the diner, dam, and planetarium. Lola got in a swimming pool and the lake for the first time, and she event slept through the fireworks.
All in all, I think the success of vacationing with a little one is based on expectations. Keep them low and keep plans flexible. Now, if I can just remember my own words next June — Lola will be 21 months when we take to New York City for a long weekend. It will be a lot different than the lazy lake and I’m already stressing about how well she will travel and sleep. This girl has never once fallen asleep in the Tula OR a stroller.
Do you have any pro tips for vacationing with a toddler?