Baby Travel Gear For Eating, Sleeping and Getting Around…
A mule to carry it all would be nice too!
For the time being at least, the days of traveling light are long gone… Just as I wondered how such a tiny person would have so many things to quickly fill and clutter-up our tiny city house, I also wondered how all of a sudden we have the same amount of luggage as J. Lo (except ours is not Louis Vuitton and we have to schlep it ourselves). Come to think of it, J. Lo now has twins – can you imagine what her luggage cart looks like?
We’ve looked at some nice-to-have gear when it comes to feeding baby on your travels, now let’s take a look at sleeping…
Co-sleeping/bed sharing never really worked for us (more like co-thrashing-around/bed hogging), so a safe place to sleep away from home was important for us. Our first experience with a hotel crib was not a good one, so from then on we’ve always brought something with us. Not all playpens are as lightweight as ours, though, so it may be worth it to invest in one of the really portable ‘tent-like’ travel cots. Many of them have a high UV protection rate in their fabric as well, making them ideal to bring to the beach for naps!
On our latest trip our daughter was too big for a playpen, so we bought what can be described as a sleeping bag with a built-in air mattress. She thought it was fun, but it was not a suitable bed for anything more than the occasional nap. We ended up putting her in a regular bed with an assortment of furniture and pillows for makeshift bedrails, but upon our return I’ve learned of a number of travel bedrail options, so we’ll give one of those a try on our next jaunt.
I’ve seen and lugged my fair share of baby travel beds, and the Baby Bjorn one, while pricey, is probably the sturdiest one I’ve come across. It’s also incredibly easy to set up, incredibly easy to take down, and weighs only 11 pounds – most certainly lighter than the baby that’s likely sleeping in it. It’s not exactly the most compact when folded, but if you are lucky to be flying an airline where checking luggage is not extra and you’re not sure about your sleeping arrangements at your destination, this way you know you have a safe and secure place for baby to sleep.
Those clever Kiwis at Phil&Teds have created a cool multi-purpose travel bag/travel bassinet for those hitting the road with baby. Nest is a lightweight bag – approved for overhead storage in airplanes – that can hold all of baby’s odds and sods while you’re en route, and then serves as a cosy bassinet for baby to sleep in. It is safe and suitable for newborns and infants up until about nine months of age, so if you’re planning on doing a fair amount of travel while baby is quite little (as you should!) than Nest is a great investment.
US shoppers click here
Canadian shoppers be patient! Nest is not yet available in Canada.
This inflatable bed is BPA-free, pthalate-compliant, and offers toddlers a comfy and fun place to sleep when you’re out and about. The toddler bed + pump weighs under 8lbs, and can fit in a suitcase. How I wish this was invented for those few trips we took when my daughter was too big for a pack’n'play, but too small for a real bed. The inflatable toddler bed fits regular crib sheets, and they also have a version that’s a twin bed that fits regular twin-sized bedding as well.
Yet another product by The Shrunks that I wish was invented when we traveled with our daughter as a toddler. Travel bed rails seemed impossible to find, and I laugh when I think of some of the crazy contraptions we built with the hope of keeping her safe in her bed. Staying in family-friendly hotels and resorts does not necessarily mean they will supply bed rails, and this little invention can give you some peace of mind without taking up much room in your luggage.
My kids are good sleepers, but the are used to certain sights and rituals that come with bedtime at home. And while we follow our bedtime routine while we’re traveling, how wonderful it would be to bring along the nightlight they’re familiar with?! Plus, we’re always fiddling with hotel room lighting arrangements to try to come up with the best light-enough-to-see-but-not-so-light-it-disturbs-our-sleep level, so just bringing a nightlight from home would alleviate all those issues!
Bringing along your baby or toddler’s woobie or lovey is a no-brainer, and this one actually has an added feature that could be a bonus for travel. Not only is it a cuddly (and safe) teddy, the soundbox acts as a white noise machine, and can play womb sounds or a song or message that mama or dada records. The soundbox has an audio and motion sensor, so it automatically starts again if baby cries or the bear is moved. The soundbox automatically shuts off after five minutes, conserving battery life.
The Back To Sleep Wearable Blanket is another step in maintaining at-home sleep habits while you’re away with baby. I used a sleep sack with my kiddos when they were small because I knew they would always be cosy and warm, and also it helps limit their mobility and keep them on their back. I’m certain that traveling with the sleep sacks when they were little helped my children fall asleep when we were traveling, and it’s kinda nice to have the crib bedding and baby blanket all in one.
We had to buy a new copy of Goodnight Moon for my son, as my daughter’s copy is so beat-up it’s barely readable. And now my son’s copy is in the same state. Both of their Goodnight Moons have come on just about every trip with us, as maintaining our bedtime routine while we’re away is key to helping them fall asleep. We’ve read Goodnight Moon almost every night for six years. To say we can recite it word for word is an understatement – it’s become part of our psyche! I tell myself that’s a good thing Whether your bedtime ritual includes Goodnight Moon or a different book, don’t forget to bring it on your trip.
This is a really cute stuffie, pillow, and blanket, all-in-one! Packing a stuffed animal, pillow and special blanket into your already-bursting carry-on bag is not always feasible, so these little guys are not only cute, they are very functional. Introduced pre-flight, it could help make flights cuddly and cosy as opposed to chilly and cramped. The shark is really cute, no? There is also a Bunny, Puppy, Lamb, Unicorn, Chick, and an ultra adorable Ladybug Comfy Critter.
US and Canadian shoppers click here
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