I just got back from vacationing in Myrtle Beach, SC with family, like ALL my family. Okay, not ALL of them, but a lot of them. Due to the fact that, roomy as it is, my Santa Fe will NOT fit 4 adults, 2 babies, and a toddler, we took two cars for the trip down there. My sister-in-law and I ended up in my Santa Fe with the two (almost twin) babies (my niece actually born like 36 hours after Harper) while the men got the car with Haley. Let me say that 2 babies + 1 car + 13 hours DOES NOT = a good time. It DOES = screaming, crying, contortionist skills, (+5 points for my sister-in-law for squeezing into the back seat while we were on I95, 28 weeks pregnant), praying, and most of all, one hell of an interesting trip. We did use a dual screen DVD player from Walmart with Bubble Guppies playing on repeat to keep the little ones at bay.
Ok, so, the drive down there was on and off hell, I mostly expected that. To be fair, they WERE pretty good for a lot of the trip. Babies do turn a 10.5 hour trip into an easy 13 hour trip though, that sucked a bit. They stay also was not as bad as I thought it was going to be. We had two room efficiencies, (each family had one) so the kids we able to have their own little rooms in there (bonus!). The babies slept rather well in a different place which was nice. Feeding them wasn’t too horrible, though it was definitely awkward packing all that formula, food, the bottles, spoons, etc (PARENT TIP: back baby food in either plastic, or in a bag so that if one of the jars breaks, the mess is contained.)
Haley was definitely really good for the trip, stay, and drive. She mostly slept in the car, played on her LeapPad 2, and watched various dvds on the dvd player. She was a bit whiny during our stay, but I’m pretty sure that’s just a “her” thing. She did great with underwear on the trip (we didn’t have to stop every 10 minutes like I feared). The guys certainly lucked out.
Other than the driving and hotel-ing, everything else is pretty normal. Think: going out every day with your kids and taking them out to eat every day. There are harder things to do, but there are also a few I could think of that would have been a bit easier (for me, babies and restaurants have never mixed well).
Though the weather was sub-par, the vacation was pretty good, lots of family time. My mother-in-law hadn’t even met my sister-in-law or my niece yet, so it was great for her. While at the pool my USB medical alert bracelet got stolen and that kind of sucked… the next morning it turned up… at 6 am….. floating in the effin pool. The awesome part: it still works! You can bet I’ll be adding that to the review I wrote up for the CARE USB medical alert bracelet. Talk about waterproof!
All in all though, while there were ups and downs on vacation, there were a lot of things that I learned about vacationing with babies.
- Baby food jars go in plastic bags, or should be baby food plastic containers
- It’s easier to pick up travel bottles of baby wash and other things you’re only going to use a little of as opposed to bringing giant bottles that both take up space, and can possibly burst
- DVD PLAYER. To hell with whoever said it’s wrong. Clearly THEY have never traveled 13 hours by car with little ones.
- Patience. Patience. Patience. PATIENCE.
- Forgiveness. Even Mother Theresa would yell at a baby after a few hours of crying, no worries.
- Everything can just be bought at Walmart. There’s no place to vacation that doesn’t have a Walmart. It’s stupid to over pack things that can just be re-bought at the store (if they’re going to be used anyway, of course. Don’t buy a new Pack n play for the sake of not packing yours.).
- Drink. Wait till the kids go to sleep if you have to.
- Day drinking is okay on vacation, in fact, my father-in-law tells me vacation beer doesn’t even have calories in it! WOOT!
- Toddlers are better at vacationing than babies, eat food in the car, and can be yelled at for being annoying.
- Planning an Active Family Vacation (everydayhealth.com)
- Planning a Relaxing and Enjoyable Family Vacation (familytravel.answers.com)