Now that summer is in full swing I thought I would put together my top tips for packing for a toddler. This post includes all of my favs from fun in the sun to safety must haves and more, enjoy!
Packing for a Toddler- fun in the sun!
There’s nothing quite as fun as spending time at the beach or pool with your fav little one! Here are some of my must haves for those water adventures 🙂
Sunglasses and Hat
Your little one is never too young for a good pair of sunglasses and a proper hat! My fav hats are full brim but as your little one gets older it will be harder and harder to get them to leave a big hat on. So, I always include my little guy in sunglasses and hat purchases. I would much rather have ones that he will wear than expensive ones he wants nothing to do with!
Sandals & Water Shoes
Having good comfy shoes that will keep your little one’s feet protected from the hot ground or sand is super important. Make sure to get a pair that is appropriate for the kind of vacation you are taking (you probably don’t need water shoes unless you are hitting the beach!)and that your little one will like wearing.
Sunscreen is so important! Get your little one used to wearing it as young as you can so that they are amicable to you applying it. Sprays are great for arms, legs, tummy & back since it’s quick to apply but make sure to have a good SPF cream for the face.
UPF 50+ Swimsuits
Ok, I know the swimsuit pictured above might look a bit extreme but it covers my little guy from chin to toe so I only need to worry about sunscreen on his face and a good hat. It also keeps him insulated in the cool water and dries super fast!
Goggles and Floaties
Depending on your little one’s age you may want to get bring goggles or floaties. This will help them to get used to putting their face in the water (without getting water in their eyes!) as well as the sensation of floating and swimming on their own. If you can get them with their fav characters, even better!
If you’re little one is still in diapers, make sure to bring some good swim diapers! I know it sounds obvious but I didn’t think about it on our first vacation with my little guy and his regular diaper swelled to 5 times it’s normal size in the water. I only made that mistake once 🙂
Packing for a Toddler-safety first!
Aside from the fun activities that keep your toddler entertained during a flight I also have a few safety/comfort items that I’m always sure to bring along!
My little guy is tiny, always has been, probably always will be! But, no matter your little one’s size the moment they turn two the require their own seat on a flight. I had seen people bring carseats on the plane which certainly solves the problem of keeping your little one in place but is a bit of a pain to lug on and off a flight.
So, I started researching options, I couldn’t possibly be the only one with this concern! And, that’s when I came across ‘Kids fly safe’ a airline approved safety harness that works similar to a car seat. Just slip it over the seat, tighten it and do up the seatbelt through the loops. Now, my little guy can fly safe and secure and the entire thing can be thrown into my carry on bag with no problem! If you know you are going to be on at least a few flights between the time your little one is 2 & 5 it’s worth looking into!
Ok, this is another item I had to search around a bit for! My little guy loves to sleep in cars and on planes but his head always flops down. I knew there had to be a way to keep his head propped up in a comfortable way that didn’t require him wearing a big pillow. Well, this strap works like a charm. I just slide it over the plane seat and when he falls asleep I gently slide it over his forehead and leave it on until he starts to wake up, he gets a way better sleep that way!
One of the easiest ways to keep your little one entertained during a flight is with a movie or tv show on either your own device or the in flight entertainment. It’s important to bring proper headphones for your little one so that they both fit properly and also have a volume limiter to prevent them from getting too loud if your little one start playing with the volume.
Hopefully these tips will help make your toddler’s next flight a safe and pleasant one, for everyone!
Packing for a Toddler- the fun stuff!
If you’ve ever taken a little one on vacation you know there are expensive temptations everywhere, especially at Disney. But, with a little pre-planning you can minimize over spending without cutting down on the fun, here are a few of my fav tips and buy ahead items.
Glow Sticks & Light Up Wands/Toys
Ok, this seems like a weird one but glowing toys are super expensive, break easily and the novelty runs out really quickly. If you’ve ever been to a show with your kiddo that has even a little bit of darkness you know what I’m talking about. Glowing toys generally start at $15 anywhere up to $40 depending on where you are and what you’re doing. So, before you go anywhere where this temptation might get your little one’s attention go to your nearest dollar store and grab a few packs of glow sticks. For a dollar you can get 6 glow sticks so pick up a few packs for variety! Also, check and see if you can find any other inexpensive glowing toys, the spinning wand above was $5 at Walmart and will be tons of fun when we hit up Disneland’s Main Street Electrical Parade!
Activity Books and Travel Sets
My kiddo absolutely loves colouring and stickers so I always make sure to pick up a few new activity books before we go anywhere. There is nothing more exciting than cracking open a brand new activity book at the start of a long trip (car, plane, train, doesn’t matter!) Also, make sure to pick up a portable table surface with a soft underneath so that your little one can rest it on their laps, it will make the activities that much easier. You can find these types of activity books pretty much anywhere but if you go to the Dollar Store you will get more bang for your buck and in this case getting more variety is certainly a good thing!
Oh, Play-Doh, how I love you! My little guy can play with Play-Doh for hours, he absolutely loves it! So, I like to grab a bag of mini-containers (usually the pack has 16) that I can bring with me to always be able to hand him a new Play-Doh when he’s getting fidgety or bored. And, because they are just tiny they are basically one time use, you don’t have to worry about them drying out or getting lost and he can mix all the colours he wants!
Autograph Book and Pin Trading Lanyard
If you are headed to Disney my two fav souvenirs for little guys are autographs and Pins. Once you make the initial investment, you can keep up the tradition for relatively little expense. For autographs, you can buy a book at the parks (or pick up a blank Disney book from pretty much anywhere) and take it with you for every character meet & greet, don’t forget to bring a Sharpie (the thicker pens are much easier for the characters to write with). For pin trading, once you buy the lanyard with starter pin set you can just periodically pick up pins when the time is right, it makes for a great souvenir and once they get a little older they can choose to trade them with various cast members around the park.
So, there you have it! With just a little bit of pre-planning you can save a ton of money & cut down on stress without sacrificing any of the fun!
Hopefully this list will help next time you are packing for a toddler so you won’t be stuck wishing you had something you forgot and your next trip will be stress free (as much as possible)! Want some tips on having a great family vacation? Here are my top five!