I survived my first road-trip (from California to Arizona) with 11-month-old boy girl twins! Here is my advice:
1. Pack for all climates: Don’t rely on the weather report like I did. It was supposed to be in the 90’s all weekend. I packed a ton of onesies and bathing suits but no jackets. It was cold and windy all weekend!
2. Used Crib Sheets: This was the first time my kids would be sleeping in an unfamiliar place and crib (or Pac-n-play) so the familiar smells from their crib sheets made it much more comfortable.
3. Squeezable Food Pouches: Test them out for these two reasons prior to your trip: One kid may not like the taste of them and the puree comes out very fast! I make all of my own baby food so I assumed my kids would love these scrumptious flavors! My son was not a fan but I was eventually able to trick him by feeding him from a bowl and a spoon like at home. The puree will end up all over their faces if you squeeze too fast!
4. Disposable bibs: enough said.
5. Plastic bags: These are great for storing garbage on the drive and also dirty diapers in the hotel room.
6. Infant Tylenol: never leave home without it!
7. Heavy-duty tape: Tape the drawers in the hotel room so they don’t smash their little fingers.
8. Light socket covers: for obvious reasons
9. Sound machine: definitely helps drown out slamming hotel doors or the television.
10. Overnight diapers: I only packed overnight diapers because they last longer in situations when you can’t change them immediately…especially on the road.
11. Travel bottle warmer: Takes about 20 minutes to heat each bottle but definitely worth it!
12. Hand sanitizer: This trip really helped me learn how to accept germs because in my home you can’t walk 5 feet without passing a bottle of hand sanitizer. It’s not that simple when traveling.
13. Safety release forms: If you hire a babysitter, she will need these forms.
14. Request extra sheets: I placed these on the floor of the hotel room because you never know what kids are going to find and put in their mouth.
15. Do a room check when you arrive: Unplug lamps and move trash bins in their reach, check under the bed, behind the curtains, and the closet for anything they might eat.
16. Be flexible: Their schedules won’t be the exact same that they are at home and that’s ok. It was hard for me to accept that at first but once I did, I was able to relax and the kids were fine!
Dawn Antis is a mom of twin toddlers and stepmom to 3 adult children. She is the founder and blog writer for Mom & Tot OC, a mommy & me group for toddlers in Orange County, California. Dawn is the Chair of Communications for Valiant Women of Mission Hospital. She was the Associate Editor of Orange Coast Magazine and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from California State University, Fullerton. Dawn resides in Irvine with her husband and little ones.