Yesterday was one of the longest and tiring days this little family has had in a long time. We were up and on our way at the crack of dawn to get to the airport for our flight to Melbourne for 90th birthday celebrations for my DH's Gran.
Any other other time we or I have travelled to Melbourne it has involved a break of a couple of days and nights away. So please indulge me to a list of things I have learnt with whirlwind one day travelling and flying with kids, especially infants and toddlers.
* Be organised the night before, right down with clothes being laid out. Get yourself ready and then if you have to wake sleeping kids, get them ready at the last minute. Hopefully you can get them into the car sleepy enough to catch extra zzzz's on the way to the airport.
* Those squeezable fruit pouches for kids and babies (my kids never have them, but I thought they would be handy for travelling) are not a great idea with a grabby baby, especially if you didn't pack a change of clothes for yourself (of course the kids had changes of clothes).
* If you hire a car, take your kids car seats so they have travelling comfort they are used to. Also check and check and check again that anchor points in hire cars are tight and fitted properly (hire car companies are frequently changing them over and you're better to trust your judgement than the companies).
* iPads with a movie loved by your child and age appropriate apps are a blessing.
* You can do inflight crafts with an airsickness bag (another post to come on that one).
* A baby carrier is essential for the infant, so you can wrangle a toddler, bags, car seats and trolleys.
* If you take a child's loved comfort toy or teddy with you, treat him like a family member and frequently and I mean frequently do a head count and know where he is at.
I know I look a little weary in that last pic it was halfway through the flight down in the morning. But trust me we all perked up and we had a wonderful time, celebrating a wonderful women and a matriarch of a family.