Family vacation with a child just under two = stress.
June 24, 2012 2:16 PM Subscribe
Our cross-country family vacation with a 21 month old is 5 days away and I'm sick with worry over numerous travel-related things. Tips and advice?
posted by kitcat to travel & transportation around Cape Breton Island, NS (14 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
We're travelling for two weeks from the west to the east coast: to Toronto for 3 days, then Halifax, then Cape Breton, all to visit family. We have one child, who doesn't play alone much and is going through her terrible twos (although she's mostly lovely and delightful). We are trying to bring some of her lightest toys (she doesn't play much with them anyhow), and some books (which she loves) and we'll have her music and some DVDs. I've stocked the iPad with apps and some cartoons. But she's used to being very active at daycare, and for these two weeks she'll spend most of her time at houses without toys or other children, although there will be a neighbor with young ones very near when we're in the most rural area (which is very, very rural - and lest you say: wonderful, let her run free! - there are aggressive coyotes to worry about). There will be the beach as well, thankfully, and square dances and fiddle concerts, which she'll love.
Here are the things worrying me most:
When we're not on outings, I don't want her watching tv all day. On the other hand, I'm going to be utterly exhausted and miserable trying to stimulate and entertain her all day in these new environments, never mind chasing her around houses that aren't child proof and only have the few toys we've brought. Tips on striking a balance?
The 3-hour time change. If I don't adjust her to it, she'll be going to bed at 11pm, which will be exhausting and leave no grown-up time for us. If I do adjust her, she'll be completely messed up when we go home, and this will make the transition back to work and daycare really hard, and the daycare will think I'm a bad mom for bringing such a tired child in.
The plane rides. And long times waiting in a stroller (she runs/won't stay with us if we let her out). This will be the first time she flies as a toddler and there are 6 flights altogether. She's going to be on our laps and will probably be wriggling to get off. On most of the flights my husband and I likely won't get to sit together because the cost of choosing seats in advance has become astronomical (honestly, I think it was close to $30 a person per flight).
The feeling of having my parenting watched and likely judged. Especially by an older generation - things have changed a lot since they raised their kids, whether in the 70s or 80s or even 90s. I know it's just a part of life, but I hate that feeling so much.
What tips do you have for some of these specific issues? Maybe this is an opportunity to teach her to play alone? How? Maybe also a chance to teach her to walk next to us? How? I know the standards for travel with toddlers, but any little known ones could be helpful. Most of all, how do I not lose my mind and come home utterly depleted? Sorry for being all over the place, and thank you for reading.