TRAVELLING WITH THE MINI ME!
Traveling with a Toddler or if you are a super mum of many – How to Stay Sane.
They’re mobile, they’re vocal, they’re not exactly known for rational thought. Parents can be forgiven for periodically thinking they have lost their Parenting-Marbles entirely, for ever thinking that traveling with a toddler was a good idea. But fear not, with the ability to dig deep and locate the Boy Scout within, parents traveling with toddlers will not only survive, but will stay sane.
Military-precision planning is key to the success of Operation Transport Toddler. Toddlers are delicious bundles of impish cuteness that have the ability to About Turn their personality in seconds. Parents need to don the cap of anticipation and predict, plan, and then plan some more.
Rule One: Factor in their needs. There’s been a seismic shift: The centre of the universe is not theSun...it’s that two foot mini-person who has a mind of their own. Accommodate their needs. Thisisn’t an option, it’s sanity-saving and chaos-reducing sense. Spontaneity is so last year. Book ahead, anticipate the trouble spots, work out realistic expectations, know your enemy. They need to move,it’s not optional for a toddler, and so provide the opportunity. Use the platform, departure lounge or service station to get moving. Only contain them when they have to be contained. Let them examine that fascinating spot on the wall for 10 minutes, knowing that there is plenty of time.
Rule Two: Become an entertainment station. Pack the Kindle in the hold and accept the role of Entertainer Extraordinaire. Make sure to pack fiddly, not-too-messy snacks: raisins, cubes of cheese, breadsticks. And wipes, lots of wipes. Swipe the party aisle of the supermarket and buy new little toys and wrap them: that’s three precious minutes of focus right there: unwrapping. Be forever grateful that now is the technological age and embrace electronics. Apps galore, additional external chargers, mixed with a variety of new toys, and it may just be possible to even have what could be described as a pleasant bonding experience.
Rule Three: Label them. Mobile numbers on bespoke temporary tattoos, labels in clothes, ballpoint pen on their arm, or branding irons: all work well in ensuring that they don’t get lost...It might be conceivable that as parents the peace would be relished, but it’d probably put a dampener on theholiday. Traveling, and the myriad of stages and thoughts the adults are facing, can mean little people wander and like lightning it’s a flash and they are gone.
Rule Four: Don rhino-hide. Most members of the public love toddlers: they are interminably cute, cheeky and gorgeous when they belong to someone else and aren’t an exercise in relentlesspatience 24/7. 95% of the people are either looking endearingly, or in sympathy if the Devil’s OwnSpawn isn’t their charge today. And that other 5%...are never going to be seen again.
Put on your armour and earn your “travelling with a toddler” stripes.