Google+ Mommy Moments with Abby: Packing A Bag For 4?!!!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Packing A Bag For 4?!!!


Since, I already called the airline I can start packing. I went ahead and found my travel storage bags that you can roll up to get the air out making for more room in the suitcase. I haven’t used these since we moved, so I’m hoping they hold up on the trip.

I started with the kids, since they have the largest need. I figured that with being gone for 5 days I should pack 7 outfits (two usually get messy, one will go in the diaper bag and the other is an extra that will also be for colder weather in case we get a chilly day), plus 4 sleeper outfits ( my son sweats a lot), two shoes for my daughter (one sandal and one tennis shoe for when we are at the farm), socks for both, one blanket each (the smell will help with comfort in a strange place), light jackets each, 6 bibs- 3 each as they can be rinsed off each night and set out to dry if needed, a swimsuit each since play in a pool was planned, 4 little swimmers diapers (2 per kid since only one day of swim play was planned) 2-wash clothes, 3 burp rags, and one sun hat each(even though they won’t keep them on). We already had blankets, towels, rags, bibs, play yard sheets, and changing table pads waiting at our destination which cut down on the packing some.

I put the two wash clothes wet in baggies and in the diaper bag for cleanup on the plane if needed, wipes are great but sometimes they don’t get stuff off as easy as the rag does). The two hats, the bibs, burp rags, one extra outfit each, all went into the diaper bags. The rest was divided into the airlock bags and the air squeezed out. The shoes were placed in the suitcase sans bag. I went over the outfits over and over and widdled down to the amount I’m listing here for packing. In the end only one outfit went unworn and the hats not used (I would still bring them again just in case).

Now, for my husband and me to pack our clothes for this trip. I had him put out what he wanted to bring and loaded that first. I then put out 5 outfits for myself, plus one dress I was saving for the DC trip! I made sure to pack extra underwear 2 pairs each, socks, one pair of shoes, plus a very thin pair of flip flops, I packed a sensible(not one of my fashionable) purse for the outings where the kids were left with the grandparents, one sleep clothes set (thinnest I had for space) and a belt. I put it all in bags except the shoes, purse, and belt and squeezed the air out. I loaded the father’s day gift for grandpop and the birthday gift for grandmom in the middle of the bags. Next, I had to tackle our toiletries!!!

We decided to use the soap, towels, rags, shampoo and conditioner, lotion, and sun block of my husband’s parents. This left for us to pack, shaving equipment, toothbrushes, my prescription tooth paste, other meds, my night cream, deodorant, vitamins, facial cleanser, hair brush, and hair bands. I packed them into the toiletry bag which was added to the suitcase! Or so I thought because upon arrival I found that I had left my toothbrush at home on the counter to be packed so even with all my rechecks I managed to miss something. The suitcase was clothes and rechecked 3 times before being loaded into the car.

The diaper bags were stocked with the bottle cooler filled with bottles and sippy's for the plane (be careful what you pack they test all gels and fluids), a container of my daughters lunch I premade, and a container of homemade baby food for lunch and one for breakfast for my son. I added two small Tupperware containers with enough formula and enfagrow formula for two bottles/sippy’s in case of a plane delay. I then packed two separate sandwich bags for each kid with their potential needed meds, nasal suction, oragel, mycilon, miralax, Tylenol, Motrin, teaspoon syringe, and little noses saline. I labeled each so that it would be easy to tell whose is whose by grandparents and on the plane. I made sure the baby silverware was all plastic, put in a small container of fishes along with one of cinnamon chex and a few mum-mum’s in side pockets for baby snack attacks, made sure the mini-first aid kits were in the side pockets, took out the thermometers, added Neosporin and Desitin to the side pockets for easy access, and made sure there was a good stock of diapers and wipes for the ride. To help myself out I put a small stash of wipes in a baggy along with two diapers in a side pocket which I transferred to the pocket in the back of the seat in front of me on the plane. This was helpful since once you get going the last thing you want when a potential blow out is occurring is to have to riffle through a small space for what you need. Remember to try to keep all fluids and gels in one bag so you only have to unload one for testing if you have two kids. If you only have one than keep fluids and gels near the top or on side pockets for time and less headaches when unloading for testing.

For my carry on I put in all the books, portable DVD player and DVD’s, bye-bye baby, front load carrier for my son, and homemade toys. My husband’s carryon held our wallets, his laptop, books, and other work/school related materials. I put together a folder of a copy of each kids birth certificates, copies of their shots records, map of DC, tourist brochure of DC, DR’s information, list of approved Urgent Care Centers and Hospitals for our insurance (I called ahead for this since often you need to notify your insurance of trips for potential out of area coverage which they will note on your account (get a reference number for the call always!)), and our boarding passes sans the lap baby pass which you get upon checking in at the counter. I brought two copies of the boarding passes/tickets; one for use and the other to prove we purchased the extra seat for the car seat when asked and if needed. I put this folder in the side pocket of a carry on to make everything easy to access and put in some paper clips to put ID’s with passes so it made going through security quicker and less fumbling.

I made sure to check everything at least 3 times before we left and was taking stuff out up until we got into the car to leave. What I listed above is what they end result was and I’m glad we took everything we did since we seemed prepared for everything we encountered and while I’m sure there are places to improve things seemed to go smoother than they would have had I not prepared as I did. This brings the total bags to one large suitcase, 2 diaper bags, 2 carry on, and one car seat on wheels with play and fold tray. I will continue to add to the blogs about the travel prep and what seemed to work on this adventure of ours! I hope to those reading that it helps in your travels and you are able to share your improvement and tricks to the rest of us! In closing, always call, think, and pack ahead for everything and you’ll never wish you had done more before leaving to go anywhere. This is not only true when traveling with kids, but in life in general, since a little effort in the front end makes for more fun with less worry on the back end!


The pictures are in the Baltimore Airport.

1 comment:

  1. Great post and so true about what you need and what you need to be careful of when traveling with kids on planes. Thanks for sharing.


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