"For all of us, becoming indigenous to a place means living as if your children's future mattered, to take care of the land as if our lives, both material and spiritual, depended on it." - Robin Wall Kimmerer, Braiding Sweetgrass
My husband and I celebrated our 5th Anniversary with a trip to Canada to visit my cousins and surprise my Aunt and Uncle for their 49th Anniversary Party combined with their 70th Birthdays. You may think that traveling with a two-year-old is crazy, but we've had a great time. We're so lucky that Ronan is such a good little traveler, but here are a few tips to make traveling with your toddler a pleasant experience instead of pain.
1. Tire them out!
Before you choose to visit a restaurant or museum or have to make a long drive, find a cool park or place where you can let them run. You'd be surprised at how fun it can be to visit parks in different places. Going to the park is a great way to experience the beauty of a new city and an inexpensive activity for the entire family. Once your toddler gets all their wiggles out they will be much more manageable at a place that requires them to be quiet.
Stock up on some of your toddlers favorite treats. It's okay to spoil them a little. Remember that you are taking them out of their normal routine and comfortable environment and want them to associate travel with something they like. Go ahead and give them some extra treats for the road.
It's something we never have enough of, especially while on vacation. Remember to take time out from your travel schedule to dedicate directly to your toddler. Toddlers need time and attention. If you plan time to dedicate to making sure your toddler's needs both physically and emotionally are met then everyone will be much happier in the long run. You may have to sacrifice seeing everything you want to see, but the memories you make with your toddler will last you a life-time.
Tantrums will still happen, that's natural, but following these three tips has helped us to have great trips with our little guy.
Above all else, when you kids are missing home, teach them from a young age something my husband's grandparents would always say to their children when traveling:
"Home is wherever Mommy and Daddy are!
You can't miss home when home is right here."
If you want to teach your toddler to travel, make this your motto and make sure they feel that it is the truth.