As we embarked on our holiday vacation this year, I spent most of
December getting ready to take a 3-year-old and a 6-month baby on an
airplane. As any mother knows, pre-travel plans for taking a 6-month-
old on an airplane should begin approximately at 6 p.m. the day after
your baby is born.
This pretrip period includes deciding which of her outfits she
absolutely must wear so her relatives can “ooh and aah” over her, and
which clothes she can probably do without but you’ll take anyway.
Perhaps the most time-consuming portion of packing for a baby is the
daunting “products” category. These are all of the little one’s
various ointments, creams, salves, lotions, medicines, bath soaps, Q-
tips and washcloths. Please keep in mind that you must bring every
single medicine or cream that your baby has ever used. It is
absolutely vital that you pack as if you will be traveling through the
sub-Saharan wilderness with no convenience stores for days, much like
I did when I traveled to the remote locale of Phoenix.
By this point, you’ve got three or four bulging bags ready to sneak
through as carry-on luggage so you can avoid the $25 checked-bag fee.
You are now ready for stage 2 — or what I like to call the onset of
triptheria. This fun stage is when babies hear you say the word
vacation and decide it would be hilarious to spike a 102-degree fever
and break out into a rash.
But once you’ve made it through the pretrip stage, you’re ready for
the main event. You can be confident that you’ve packed with care —
you’ve got binkies o’plenty just waiting to be called into action and
an array of outfits that will be just right whether your little one is
playing in the sand or has to attend an impromptu charity gala.
You can now sit back, relax and try to ignore the scowls from
passengers 26D and 28E as your baby screams during takeoff and
landing. These sans-baby travelers are under the misguided notion that
passengers with baby in tow are secretly pinching their little ones
throughout the flight and quietly giggling about how hilarious this
is. I mean, why else would we just let them scream like that?
But it’s worth it. It’s worth all the hassle just to hear those four
sweet little words as soon as the airplane’s wheels leave the ground,
“Are we there yet?”
How did your travel plans with kids go this year? Any memorable (or