Editor's note: The following is a guest post written by Soleil Moon Frye, Target's mommy ambassador, author of Happy Chaos, and mom to Poet, 6, and Jagger, 3. This week Soleil shares her tips on traveling with kids.
I'm a huge believer in the importance of taking the occasional "time out" as a family and planning an escape to recharge and reconnect.
Last year, Jason surprised me and the kids with an impromptu jaunt to Mexico. Although it was stressful to think of dropping everything on such short notice, the trip turned out to be exactly what we needed. It was an invaluable treat to spend quality time together without the distractions that pull us in a dozen different directions every day.
Whenever I'm traveling with my girls, my carry-on always includes these essentials:
- An assortment of portable activities like books, a few toys, and paper and crayons. I have the girls pick out a few of their favorite things from home to take with them — this way we're not overloaded with too much stuff, but they feel connected to what they are bringing.
- A first aid kit with Band-Aids and other Doctor Mom must haves in case of emergencies.
- Wipes, wipes, and more wipes. They're quick and easy for cleaning up spills and sticky fingers on the go.
- A change of clothes for both girls, including a sweatshirt in case they get cold.
- A stash of yummy snacks is the best way to combat the inevitable crankiness that comes with restless flights and travel delays.
A successful family trip doesn't require airplanes or lush accommodations. When I was growing up, my mom would delight us by laying blankets on the small balcony of our apartment and letting us sleep under the stars. I've inherited her passion for making an adventure out of everything and am also a big advocate of "staycations." In my house, we love to camp out in the living room and decorate the space to look like an exotic location. You can go all out and cook foods native to those places and do activities inspired by their cultures.
The idea is to carve out time to be together and create a special experience that the kids will always remember. The extravagance of a getaway isn't what will factor into the memories.
I'm always looking for fun family bonding ideas, so please share your cost-cutting travel tips and creative "staycation" plans with me on the Target Baby Facebook page!
. . . Soleil