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LekkerLekker89

Vacationing : with a tiny human or days of worry

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So, my husband and I are considering a small get-away to celebrate our anniversary. We want to spend a few days in a nice cabin in either Hocking Hills (Oh) or Pigeon Forge (Tn), we're still debating that as well. But the real issue here is- do we take our son? We have taken him on small get-aways last summer and all was well. But, he was just a little tiny guy then - his needs were SO simple! Eat, be changed, sleep. He will be one in a few weeks and he is a tornado of curiosity and all cabins have damage deposits lol. We have family willing to watch him, but in some strange way it seems unfair to rob him of the experience (even if he will never remember it.) After all, the dog is going...lol Also, I have never been away from him for more than a day. I feel like it would just be easier to include him than to leave him behind. Obviously a first-time mother here (what a wondrous journey it is!) so I'd like experienced parents/grandparents to chime in- what are your thoughts, suggestions...? Especially on the packing bit - how on earth do we fit the needs of Toots (his nickname) as well as our luggage into our sardine-tin sized car?! Stroller, pack and play, toys for days- is it really all necessary? Am I overthinking? I tend to do that a lot...

Picture- this was actually our honeymoon (last June) lol Toots and Jack (dog) included! What an...interesting time, I truly enjoyed every moment- even waiting for the tow company the next morning as the truck slowly sank in sand...Mackinac bridge in the background at sunrise smh lol. Picture was taken at a scenic outlook about 20 miles or so from Mackinac City. 

honeymoonfam.jpg

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As a non-parent I don't have any practical advice, but your instincts are to take him with you, aren't they, so I bet that's what you end up doing, regardless of any perceived difficulties. Everyone pares down what they "need" when they go away for a break, Toots gets to do that too, with no hard decisions to make himself, lol. Kids that age are entertained by an empty box aren't they, anything within reach is a "toy", you won't need to add a trailer to you sardine can to be able to cart all his stuff along with you.

Yeah you're totally over-thinking, lol, but it's what parents do, my mum still does it and she's 65 😅 Take your little guy along and you'll learn from this break, you'll get a clearer idea of what you (and he!) do and don't need, which'll make the next one a lot simpler to prepare for.

Hopefully other TDNer have some more actually useful advice from hands-on experience to give. :ph34r:

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I just kind of lurk around here, but I joined to respond to you 😛 Mom of 2 here, and I've never left them for more than a night. They're huge mommy lovers though, and wouldn't really do well being left with someone. I think they'd even give their own dad a hard time. 

 

As far as cabins go, they're usually pretty bare and not much for him to mess up, unless you're going to a fancy cabin. I will say, one hard part of camping with littles is if you wanted to do a campfire, and cook over the fire. If your kid is happy in the pack n play, that might make it easier though. Mine wasn't. Such a difficult child she was. We went camping for our anniversary when our daughter was about 1.5 or so, and it was a pretty terrible experience. It was a tent and not a cabin, though, and we also semi went with a group, where nobody else had a kid, so that really put a damper on things as well since it was hard to do things around her schedule of needing naps and stuff. So, if your kid is pretty chill, your schedule is flexible, and you just plan to take it easy, then I think it's totally doable.

 

As far as packing... good luck! Get a roof rack lol. But I find that my kids usually don't play with toys too much while we're away. There's enough other things to play with and explore, so I just bring some versatile toys like buckets/stacking cups and shovels, maybe a couple books, a ball, markers, etc. Nothing too crazy. I also found it easier with camping to buy the food once we got there instead of bring it from home, (except for baby food/snacks as necessary).

 

enjoy your trip! I've heard great things about Pigeon Forge. Not familiar with Hocking Hills though. It seems you're roundabouts in the Midwest- you may want to look into Johnson's Shut Ins State Park for a trip one day!

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So, I'm firmly on the side of traveling with kids.  My wife and I have traveled to Spain with a 15 month old and later a 3 month old (and a toddler).  It wasn't care free and easy or anything, but we have great memories and stories to tell.  That said, if you have family that you trust who are willing and able to watch your 1 year old, you have an opportunity to have a baby free trip that most parents would kill for.  For 20 years, most of your trips will be family ones like going to Disneyworld or football camp or glee club regionals and such.  Just hanging out with your husband (and dog) in the woods will be rare.  

Now, I'm still firmly pro traveling with kid(s). We had this baby carrying backpack that folded into a stroller/highchair.  She basically lived on my back for two weeks while we were moving around Europe.   I spent a lot of time hovering behind her while she staggered up and down the aisles of bouncy trains to catch her in epic mid-fall.   And she did get into anything and everything she could (from stacks of VHS tapes at a friend's house to the purses of some flight attendants sitting with us on the train), so it wasn't exactly a restful time but I got to see markets and plazas from the viewpoint of a 2 foot high curious child, which is why I know that pigeons have purple feet and that you can buy snails by the scoop full from barrels. 

At age one, they're pretty self contained creatures, so you can pretty much eat, sightsee, and sleep on your schedule.  Once they're toddlers, you have to schedule bathroom breaks, naps, and meals entirely around them.  Also, you can buy diapers and food there and only pack a day or two worth.   I forget how huge and inconvenient strollers were but maybe you can use a minimal folding one for the trip.  The kid will be hanging around you most of the time and everything will be new and interesting, so you won't need all the toys or entertainment.  

If you decide to travel with your one year old, it'll all work out.  The most important thing for them is that their parents seem happy, so they'll be happy, even in a strange place without all the comforts of home.  And if you decide to travel without him, enjoy your time being a grown up.

  

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9 hours ago, jellysundae said:

 Kids that age are entertained by an empty box aren't they, anything within reach is a "toy", you won't need to add a trailer to you sardine can to be able to cart all his stuff along with you.

I laughed so hard over this, and it is beyond true that boxes are for sure a thing for him!

Thank you to everyone for your input. I am a bit of a last-minute decision maker but I'm willing to bet that we travel as a family, minus the cats (what a true nightmare that would be! lol) 

In general, I have had bad experiences with 'group' vacations. It seems like no matter how well planned everyone has their own agenda and is not willing to sway. I try to stick with going with people that I know for sure I can spend a weekend+ with and not feel slightly insane. 

 

 

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I have three girls and travelling always seems like more of a nightmare then it really is. We've never gone anywhere like to a cabin or anything. The only place we tend to go is Grandma and Grandpas. Their house is jam-packed with nick-nacks in every corner and the house is not one single bit baby proofed. So bringing a toddler there who gets into everything given the chance is a really daunting thought. I dread going there because I know I'm not going to be able to relax and watch TV or anything like I'm able to do at home. I constantly have to keep an eye on my little terror. My oldest is 8, the middle is 5 in 2 weeks, and the youngest is 2 next week. Each time visiting while the girls are in their toddler stage of curiosity and exploration I had to keep a constant eye on them. Now that the two are older it hasn't been so bad. The last time we were there, Little Babes was over a year and she was still mischevious but not as bad as she would be now. Now that she's almost 2 and able to push the chairs, climb on furniture and has the determination to get what she wants, I'm in trouble. Even at home, she finds a way to get what she wants. 😂

Normally it's not as bad as I think it's going to be. Now I have two helpers to help watch Little Babes. But even with just my 1st girl when she was in that stage it wasn't as bad as I thought.

I think including your little munchkin is a good idea. The memories you'll have together will be great, he can look back at the goofy things he did through pictures when he's older. As for the packing I sometimes over pack but I try not too. I'd start with the essentials, things you know you're going to need for him like his pack n play, highchair, etc. Whatever room you have left over you can have a space for a bag of his favourite toys.

I hope you have a wonderful trip!

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On 3/13/2019 at 1:36 AM, Mouseykins said:

 Their house is jam-packed with nick-nacks in every corner and the house is not one single bit baby proofed.

Every single place that we visit (and we visit a lot) seems to be this way! I'm alright with it, otherwise we wouldn't go anywhere (lol) but it can be exhausting! I'm grateful that I have a fantastic husband, although he has been working 7 days a week since just after New Year, when he IS around he definitely does his part plus some. So I do get a break, just not often. I can't swallow the thought of daycare until he can talk (may seem strange, but I'm not a very trusting person - especially with my Toots!) We are most likely taking him, for his age he's a pretty relaxed guy and enjoys watching out the window on car rides and looking around in general. I think it'll actually be more fun with him. 

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