Baby on First Vacation… Pack Your Patience and A Beer

We just got back from a week long vacation at the Cape.  The fact that we made it home only means one thing: we must still be alive.  This year we decided that renting a house on the beach might be the best way to vacation with a baby, and it probably is, but that doesn’t mean that it’s easy.  We’re both more exhausted now than we were before we left, like I am BONE tired.  I can’t even function, my brain and body hurt.  Do you have a baby?  Do you not understand why it could be so difficult?  There is no way to explain this phenomenon, it can only be felt.  

I do have some tips that could make your vacationing with a young baby somewhat less painful.

  • Make sure you have the ability to do laundry.  This is key!  My baby has reflux and is also a very messy eater.  If we hadn’t had laundry in the cottage, we would have had some really disgusting stuff to bring back home that would have ended up stained.
  • Jogging Stroller.  Ok, I guess that it depends on the age of your baby.  Little H is 6 months and is a little too small for it so I have to prop him up a little especially if he falls asleep, but the point of this tip is that a stroller that can handle a little bit more rugged terrain than the mall is helpful for long walks/beach/whatever.  Of all the strollers I saw over the week, 99% of them were jogging strollers.  I was so happy that we got a BOB right before this vacation.  
  • Make sure you’re prepared for a meltdown.  Can you quickly walk back to the house from the beach or downtown?  I luckily didn’t have to deal with this, but we made sure we were walking distance to the beach so that we could go back if he had to nap.  
  • The Tommee Tippee travel bottle warmer.  It’s essentially a canister that you pour boiling water into, and then it stays super hot in there for hours.  When you are ready to use it you just pour it into the cap and drop the bottle in, and it will warm in like 3 minutes.  This actually works better than my fancy $70 bottle warmer at home.  I wish I had found this sooner!
  • A white noise App on your phone.  I use Sleep Pillow.  This really helped him nap better at the beach when our neighbors decided to have loud annoying discussions about life.  I packed his noise machine for night time, which helped so we didn’t have to super tip toe around once he went down.
  • Prepare yourself for the idea that a vacation with a baby is potentially more work than being at home with a baby.  Also prepare to spend 2 hours packing the car Tetris style in order to get all the baby gear in there.
While spending time with the whole family is nice, waking up at 5am for a week straight and then trying to schedule everything around naps and bottles can be really draining.  Oh, you’re not the kind of would-be-parent that would let the baby’s schedule rule over you?  You’re funny.  You just don’t know it yet, but you are just like the rest of us suckers.  When a baby misses a nap, hell rains down and ruins your entire day, it’s better to work around it.
For our next family adventure, Little H is jumping on a plane with us in September.  I have no idea how he’ll handle that, but my initial feeling is: Not Well.  He had a hard time just being in the car too much this week!  We are already thinking about a 2 person vacation without baby.  We need to wait until he can sleep through the night and then my parents can watch him and we can ride away into the sunset where things like dinner at a restaurant at a normal time exist and sleeping past 7am regularly happen.  That place sounds like a fantasy right now, but it will happen.

About Laura

Working mom trying to balance life and baby.
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