Motherhood

Traveling with Children

The Holidays are right around the corner which means in the next couple of days airports and roads will be packed with people going to spend time with the loved ones.

My family and I are now part of that pack. We are heading to Asmara, Eritrea to celebrate the holidays with my mother, grandma (who is currently very sick) and all my relatives. It’s a pretty big deal for us because this will probably be our last Christmas where all the children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren are gathering together from all over the world to celebrate Grams favorite holiday with her (read all about my grandma here). If you follow me on social media, you’ve probably seen that we will also be spending Christmas giving to the poor in Eritrea.

Operation "Give Gifts Not Receive"

As a special gift to my mother and grandmother, we are having Novena baptized at the same church where my mother and aunts were baptized. Above everything else though, this will be Bini (my Ethiopian husband) first trip to my side of the African horn, and I can’t wait to share all its beauty with him.

The last time I traveled back home Isabella was my only child, and she was barely walking. That was almost ten years ago, now as a mother of three my stress level to have everyone and everything ready is accumulating by the day. I figured I’m not the only mom that’s going through this so here are some traveling tips for all you beautiful moms.

Lets talk Travel Tips..

1. Start packing early

You definitely need to start planning ahead of time. I always create a to-do list weeks in advance with the essential items coming first and work my way down as the travel dates get closer. I start to lay everything out days before we pack, so we get a visual idea of what’s going and what’s left. It creates a mess in our house, but it helps me remember the small items.

2. If possible book red-eye flights

This is especially useful if you are traveling with small children. A tired, sleepy child is much easier to travel with then an alert, active child. Trust me; the other passengers will thank you.

3. Let the kids help

Bella and Lorenzo love packing their bags. We usually pack their suitcases in their rooms, and they are responsible for providing me with the clothes they will wear on our trips. This way they are helping me and feeling important, and it saves me the hassle of pulling items out of their closets. It’s a win-win situation. LOL

Novena making sure we are always diaper ready...LOL

4. Talk about your upcoming trip as a family

The kids love being involved in our conversations so talk to them about their trip.

What will they learn?

Who are they going to see?

What is there to do for fun?

Give them a clear picture of how the trip will plan out and they will feel more involved which will make them more excited. This year I involved their classrooms in our mission to help the poor during Christmas. We called it “Operation Give Gifts Not Receive.” The kids were NOT happy with me at first; they could not understand how if they were not on the naughty list, why Santa wasn’t coming to our house. I had to explain that Santa was going to skip us this year because instead of receiving gifts we were going to give gifts.

Operation "Give Gifts Not Receive"

5. Have snacks ready

A hungry child is never a good travel companion, and airplane food isn’t the best. Pack some light snacks like crackers or pretzels for the kids to munch on during the flight. Water or Juice is also essential.

6. Pack fun stuff

In addition to the kids helping me pack their suitcases, they also pack their carry on with games, iPads, cards, coloring books and reading books to keep them busy. Make sure they include their favorite blanket or stuffed animal so they feel safe and cozy and headphones are a MUST! The entire flight will be thanking you.

7. Pack a MOM bag

Not a diaper bag but a mom bag. It will have all the necessary items for the children regardless of their ages. Cleaning wipes, medicine, water, Kleenex, chargers, etc.

Hope this helps you or someone you know. I’d love to hear from you. How will you be spending the holidays this year?

The internet connection isn't always the best in Asmara, so incase I don't get a chance to submit posts... I'd like to wish you and your family a blessed and amazing holiday season.

Merry Christmas from the Tesfaye Family :)

Always,