Try and pack for a holiday with a toddler, its nearly impossible!
I’ve always been told by friends and family that I’m a bit of a natural and quite chilled for a first-time mum; something I like to think I got from my own beloved mum. Sadly she passed away a few years ago and every day I question myself and wonder how she would have done it. Life without mum when you’re a new mum is impossibly hard... but that’s another blog. However, if those same people would have seen me this week they’d either be laughing at me in an attempt to get me chuckling too, or shipping me off to the nut house. This week is the start of our first proper family holiday and if you thought that night feeds, teething and fussy eaters were a pain in the proverbials then try packing a baby up for the week!
I can easily throw a weekends worth of clothes into a bag for a cheeky break with Peanut and my fiancé – it’s not hard really. But when that weekend is extended, there’s an impending 7 hour drive and wishful thinking for a sleeping baby in her car seat are hanging over you, the task in hand is far from simple. So I decided that the best way to tackle this was to take a methodical approach to packing and start with the essentials and then work my way from there to a neatly and efficiently packed holiday bag.
The problem about a holiday in the UK is that you just cannot predict what you’ll need clothing-wise so into the bag went summer and winter sleeping bags, thick and thin blankets, vests and cardigans – you name it, I packed it. With every eventuality covered my luggage could easily be mistaken for a move to New Zealand rather than a week’s staycation but regardless, I moved onto the ‘everything else’ category which quite literally did include everything else; nappies, swim gear, bath stuff etc. But there’s just one little issue. PACKING FOR A BABY BEFORE YOUR HOLIDAY STARTS IS IMPOSSIBLE! You need EVERYTHING, all of the time. So before you know it that neatly arranged pile of stuff you use everyday has been dipped into and messed about with, the pack of nappies you want to take away is opened because you ran out the day before, the baby wipes are a few missing because little legs got her little hands on them so naturally, they’re going to dry out – the list goes on and on.
But amongst all of the madness, the essentials strewn across the floor of the back bedroom (which has been in said state for a few years now – can’t blame a baby for that one!) and the frustration of not being able to get fully prepared until Peanut is home from nursery on the day and we’re about ready to load into the car, I remind myself of how incredible our family holidays were as kids. You can’t beat them and while as a child it wasn’t me, but my lovely mum doing the same thing but for 3 of us, I remember the best bits. It’s all worth it... even the dried out baby wipes. Typically though, I’ll forget something; probably Peanut herself!