Oh Christmas, we meet again. With the beautiful decorations, lights, trees, and excitement comes a lot of activites! December is in FULL effect and with this comes travel, parties, relatives from out of town and routines all out of wack!
Many say that I am extremely strict when it comes to my kids bedtimes. I AM. I cherish the alone time I have at the end of the long day. The two/three/who am I kidding four hours, between the last kiss good night and when I finally fall asleep is my time. The time I get to spend with my husband. The time that I can sit and read a book, do the dishes, fold the laundry, watch bad TV, etc.
The holidays ruin all of this for me. Especially when we are traveling. Here are some of the things I’ve learned from Christmas travel with little ones (other than knowing bedtimes don’t exist in December):
Pack more than you think you need
- Kids have a ton of accidents. Put them in fancy clothes and they become magnets to spills and food. Carry extra clothes with you!
- If flying to family, ask to borrow strollers/car seats/ warm clothes from them or their neighbors. It’s much cheaper to find a used stroller than to try to check one!
- A party that you didn’t plan for will probably occur. It did for us when we traveled and I was so glad to have remembered to bring the “church” shoes with us
Plan fun activities for the ride
- Tablets will only buy you so much time. Pick up whatever you can from the dollar section. New toys every couple of hours will make the trip seem shorter, for you.
- Stickers, coloring books, window clings, journals, puzzles. Anything to keep their little hands busy.
- Get ready for I Spy, the Alphabet games, singing, and lots of bathroom breaks!
Remember to bring your traditions
- You have that awful elf that comes around every year? Better bring him with you! My boys were so worried last Christmas that Snowflake wouldn’t know where to tell Santa where to find them. It was one of the first things I packed!
- Bring their stockings. Even little items like these can make your kids feel special when they are far from home.
- Bring bedtime stories to read! The kids still need their routines! Reading should be a nightly thing (or so all the teachers tell us). So bring the books!
- Bring their own little tree. I like to have the boys bring a small tree that has decorations they like so they can still feel it’s their Christmas
- Matching pajamas! It’s fun. The pictures are cute and the memories will always last longer than the pjs do
Think ahead for presents
- Last year, I had a bunch of gifts delivered to my uncle’s house. My amazing aunt even wrapped some of them! Some hotels will allow this as well! Call ahead!
- Do in-store pick-up local to where you are! Walmart and Target allow for this and it’s a big time and money saver!
- Bring batteries for the new toys! They’re going to want to play with them!
- Bring another suitcase for these new items! Better yet if you are driving, save room for all these things!
We, once again, will be traveling this year for Christmas. I’m hoping the boys have as much fun, if not more this year with all their cousins! What are some of the tips you have for traveling during the holidays?