Well, summer is upon us which means long days, traveling, going on vacation, late nights and having lots of FUN!!
I have put together some things to keep in mind when traveling to ensure your little ones sleep stays on track as much as possible and for you to continue to enjoy your time away.
1/ If Traveling On A Plane, JUST SURVIVE
ACCEPT that you are traveling with children! Ignore the glares, keep your head high and do whatever you need to keep your little one happy. If you need to feed them to sleep do it. For Toddlers, take lots of new toys and snacks to keep them busy, iPads, movies, activity books, whatever works.
2/ Adjust To The New Time Zone As Soon As You Can
Sunlight is a useful tool in helping both you and your little one adjust to the new time zone, since light is the most powerful time cue our bodies have. Try to plan meals and socializing around the new time zone as well, and get an hour or two of fresh air in the early afternoon. Make sure you do just the opposite when evening rolls around, keeping things dark.
3/ Don’t Over Schedule Your Day!
We often have long days when on vacation, being in the sun, in the pool, going out dinner or the zoo and we tend to pack in our days. I suggest you spread out activities throughout the day giving your little one a chance to have a break. This is especially true for Toddlers. Giving them some downtime in between activities will help.
4/ Honor Babies Sleep Needs
Some pre-planning of your day will help you stick to babies nap schedule. You may have to have a nap or two on the go. That’s fine, just ensure you get baby in the car or stroller at the scheduled nap time so they don’t become overtired. Be mindful that if you do this daily for 3 days baby is likely to get used to the motion sleep. So try and have some nap cribs too back at the hotel or where you are staying . A well rested baby will be happier and more alert to take things in and enjoy their time awake.
5/ Make Sure Your Baby Has Plenty of Opportunity to Move
It’s very likely that whilst on vacation you will have baby strapped in a stroller or be in the car for some time. Make sure you carve out time in the day for your infant to get some mat time, the chance to crawl around and walk and practice their physical skills. It helps to exert some energy and avoids them practicing at night.
6/ Bring some home comforts
Take your little ones favorite lovey, blanket and bedding to keep things similar to home. Those comforting objects will be reassuring and help the transition to the new environment. Take your white noise machine and some black garbage bags and tape to make the room dark.
Most importantly, give your baby/toddler time to adjust to the new environment and trust in their ability be able to do so and create great memories!