My guide to traveling with toddlers

Our family has just returned from a quick trip over to perth, well most of our family.  Perth is the gateway to my main man S's work, so instead of flying home with me and the girls he flew straight to site to start his swing.  Perth has become a perfect little get away destination for us, I must admit that I wasn't overly keen on going back to there for a holiday after our trip 18 months ago when I was 20 weeks pregnant.  Long story short, I felt like I just didn't click with Perth, I was left feeling underwhelmed.  I am happy to report that this break was much better, I think mainly because this time S hadn't just come straight off night shift, so was firing on all cylinders, and I wasn't a big ball of hormones!

Over the past three years we have been fortunate enough to collect some fantastic W.A friends, not only through S working FIFO, but also through two amazing online bub groups that i am part of.  My beautiful sister and bro inlaw moved to Kalgoorlie two years ago, which also adds to the fabulous W.A peeps in our life, but these two are so so fabulous that they drove 8 hours to hang out with us in Perth, well he was attending a high voltage course, but I'll still pretend it was all for us.  So this trip was full of catch ups, kid's playing together, drinks and laughs!

The biggest obstacle we had this trip was the time difference, three hours doesn't sound like much, but it can really knock around little people.  What got us through was being quite relaxed about things like, what time they napped, what time they wanted to eat, and what time they wanted to play.  By being relaxed about this stuff it kept the whole family happy!

So with further ado here is a quick look at my survival guide of traveling with toddlers!

  •  Make sure you have the right entertainment for your kids! We have flown a few times with the girls now and the one thing that I think we did wrong was not having headphones that fit there little heads properly!  This time we got some kids headphones, it made watching some airline TV much easier for all involved! Team this with some brand new books and colouring books and we were on a winner to keep them entertained!

  • If they fall asleep on the way out for dinner, see if the the restaurant has couches you can be seated at.  We were so lucky that the place we went to eat out at with some friends was extremely funky and had lots of different seating, we got a couch and Miss Deedee got to nap on while we chatted and ordered drinks and food. 

  • Let them play in the sand in their good party dresses.  I'm not the biggest clean freak out there, but I am very anal when it comes to the girls clothes, I freak at the slightest mark, but I took a deep breath and let them play in the sand after dinner one night, it saved tears and and we ended up having some great photos with the sunsetting, and really sand isn't that dirty at all!

  • Take a walk after dinner and paddle in the water together.  This was heaven for us, not living anywhere near the beach and S and I loving the beach it was great to be able to stole down and breath in some sea air.  Lala was in her element and utilised any opportunity to get in the water! 

  • Ice-cream ANYTIME.  We never have ice-cream in this household unless I have made it myself with lactose free cream (I'm intolerant) and hardly any sugar. So Ice-cream on this trip was definitely a big treat.  The girls only got some a couple of times but loved every minute of it when they did, and never could finish what we did let them have anyway.  I love that something so simple is so special to them.

  • Let them nap on their Aunty.  This was special for both the girls and my sister, living miles away from each other, I think it is so nice that they still all have a strong bond and love each other so deeply. Thank god for Skype I say!!! 

  • Introduce the baby that is scared of the beach to a small kiddies beach first!!  We totally did this the wrong way away, Deedee heard the crashing waves and freaked right out! I mean really freaked out, she cried and screamed for a the whole 30 mins we managed to stay at the beach.  She was even getting upset when I went near the water without her.  On day 3 we found a beautiful kids beach at Hilary's about 15 minutes up the road from where we were staying.  Once we got there and set up, S sat with Deedee at the waters edge and dug a little hole that filled with water for her play in, this was the best move we made, within 15 minutes she was comfortable enough to venture into the water, and there she stayed for most of the day, loving every second!

  • Don't be afraid to use technology when your out!  On our last night we had dinner just our family, this was one of the only times the whole trip we were just the four of us.  S and I had really spent no time  just us so we did something we have never done before, we took the iPad out to dinner with us and set the girls up with a movie so we could enjoy our seafood dinner and a nice convo without hearing "I'm done, we go home now?" or "we go beach now?".  Not something I will do again in hurry as I like the girls to learn to sit and chat with us while we eat out, but nothing wrong with at all when you need so quiet time!

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