Our first road trip with the baby!
This past August we took our first big road trip since our baby boy was born. We traveled from our home in, North Carolina, to my sister-in-law’s home in Florida. I was a bundle of nerves about this 8 hour drive with an 8 month old! I’ve made the 2 1/2 hour drive to and from my home town to see my family plenty of times. Some of those drives were not fun, to say the least. So, I knew how horrific this long trip could be. I had my fingers, toes and everything crossed for a decent trip.
Well, the drive down ended up being great! There were a few things we did to try to make the trip go as seamless as possible with very few stops.
What helped the most was traveling at night.
We put our baby down for bed at his usual time of 8 o’clock. My husband had worked a 10 hour day that day. He helped with a few packing things and went to bed for a few hours. I had great intentions of sleeping but the control freak in me wanted everything packed and ready. I ended up staying up and packing the truck so everything was pretty much ready when my husband woke up at midnight. We got everything ready and got our baby up at 1am. Now, he has pretty much quit waking up for a bottle during the night. There was no way I was going to risk a hungry baby through the night though so we gave him a bottle before leaving. He went right back to sleep once we got on the road! Perfect! Mommy slept for a little while as well!
By driving at night we had a sleepy baby the first 6 hours of our trip. I knew when he woke up he would expect a bottle shortly afterwards. Heating up a bottle was not worth a stop so this mommy was prepared. We’ve tried a few of the bottle warmers that you plug in the car. Nothing seemed to beat a good old fashioned bowl of warm water. I had boiled a pot of water and put it in a thermos before we left. The lid of the thermos is the perfect size to warm a bottle in.
Our first stop
We made our first stop once my husband and I got ready for breakfast and the sun was up . We were only about an hour and a half away from my sister-in-law’s at this point but we needed a break. After finding a Hardee’s we got food, walked around, used the bathroom, let the baby out of his carseat and gassed up. We ended up stopping for about an hour but it gave us all the break that we needed. Plus, the baby was in a good mood while awake the last bit of the trip!
That way back was a different story…
Our drive back was much more eventful! We only had to drive about 5 hours because we went to the beach for a few days before going home. I ended up in the back seat trying to occupy a baby that just wanted out of his car seat for the last hour and a half. We did not get to leave at a good time for him to sleep most of the way. He didn’t get his dinner(baby food) when he usually does and we were so close we didn’t want to prolong the trip. Our careful planning on the way down made for a much easier ride. The drive back from the beach wasn’t awful but we did a make a long stop and our baby boy had a good break from his car seat.
Great first road trip
We had a great trip and I would love to get to do it all over again! Driving through the night and having everything prepared ahead of time really saved us a lot of headache on the way down. I can’t wait to do the trip again next year! Family time followed by some beach time- it doesn’t get much better than that!