Stuff I Like: My 14 panic purchases for our first toddler flight. Benefit from my assness.

Now onto the specifics. The specifics of specifically what saved our asses on the flight with our toddler. Also some shit that didn’t fly (pun totally intended). One thing I will tell you: save some toy budget for when you get there for the trip home. Otherwise the toys you bought are going to be so yesterday so yesterday. You need some of the freshness for the ride home. TRUST ME YOU DO.

Here’s what happens before every trip. Like 3 days before I’m like SHIT I NEED TO BUY EVERYTHING IN THE WORLD. And because I’m lazy and a big BIG Amazon fan, I order it all and pray it gets here in time. Usually like half of it does. I’m just going to show you everything I ordered and if it worked out or not. Again, this was a panic order so I prob went a bit overboard.

Many of you said things like “get dollar store crap” or “get tiny stupid toys and wrap them”. G is either too young for that or too smart. The little shit toys he looks at, smells and throws. We needed some real deal entertainment to get through the flight.

 

This was the first toy I opened up with G during takeoff and it was a huge hit. It was easy to pack because it’s soft and we put the pigs in the houses, in the chimney, on the seat, all in one house, none in one house. Then the wolf was like BAAAH I’M A WOLF AND I’M GOING TO KILL YOU PIGS. And because G is at a good age for inappropriate humor, he liked that. This was one of the toys that was good on both the way there and the way home. Totally recommend.

Melissa & Doug Deluxe Three Little Pigs Play Set Soft Baby Toy

Dudes, did you have this when you were little? I didn’t. Probably because it’s terrifying. But for some reason G loves terrifying things. You take turns pushing down the teeth until the croc bites you. And it kind of hurts. But he loved it. B was more afraid than G. We had a good time with this bad boy. Wasn’t the top of the list, but good because no batteries, no sounds, small and easy to pack. Also on the box it says “Elegant in fashion and style”. Which I appreciate.

Crocodile Dentist

Ok this was purchased during my SHIT HOW WILL HE SLEEP panic phase. Answer: probably not with a neck pillow. But they totally got me with their options. It comes in like a million adorable animals. But he did think it was funny to put it on his neck. However, I don’t recommend this for a 17 month old. Takes up space and is pretty dumb.

Noodlehead Travel Buddies Neck Pillow – Dog

When this arrived I was like, this thing is too big and has to go back. Somehow I fit it and thank jesus I did. This was the best toy of the trip. He searched for it everyday on our actual trip as well. It entertained him forever. I think mostly because it came with these little stamping shapes  that were really easy for him to use. Don’t get the travel one, get the real deal. It’s worth it.

Classic Doodler With 2 Stampers

Again, they got me with their options. This thing comes in a bunch of cute animals. I was like, maybe G will want to walk and it won’t really be like a harness since it’s more like a backpack with a long tail. He ended up loving the frog but HATING it on his back. So this became a glorified stuffed animal in our house. Stroller is easier and this is dumb.

Gold Bug: 2-in-1 Harness Buddy – Frog

Yep. These are winners. We put them on daddy’s face, on the seat, on G’s foot. Monkeys are a hit. They come in a million different kind of weird styles and shapes. We are monkey fans in our house. Also serve as emergency first aid. Use that to justify your purchase to your annoyed husband.

Accoutrements Rainbow Monkey Bandages

So I read on some blog to get these. Don’t listen to blogs. Just kidding. Listen to blogs. But these bite. They are like wax molding things and are sticky and gross. G tried to eat them 39 times and I don’t blame him. They look like melted twizzlers. HATE. And I threw them out when we got there.

Eight Inch Wikki Stix Primary Colors (plus black and white) 48 Piece

This is a cute book, only I wish I bought it before the trip and was reading it to him so he knew what to expect. Once we were on the plane he was like, eh about books. But it would have been cool to have him understand what was going on in his baby brain.

Amazing Airplanes (Amazing Machines)

This was one of those toys we bought at Target for the ride home. HUGE HIT. The tater survives another generation. It’s so hard to find a toy that isn’t flashing in your face or screaming obscenities at you. I swear there was a cat there that said pussy one too many times for me. The old school toys are where it’s at. G loved this. Still does. Good plane purchase.

Mr. Potato Head

So this is the one dollar store toy that worked. He loved popping the brush in and out and brushing everyone’s hair and looking in the mirror. Didn’t last for hours, but great for a cheap toy. Also his is yellow with Hello Kitty. Thank you.

Compact Brush & Mirror Fold – Pink

Ok this one is more for the trip than the plane, but it’s worth mentioning. On lots of trips we take, people have Pack and Play’s for us to use for G’s naps. We always bring this sheet with us. Those things are basically cardboard in a box. This sheet is washable and super plush and comfy. It’s like putting a featherbed on the thing. Love love love it. We never forget it.

Graco Quilted Pack ‘n Play Sheet, Cream

 

Some more shit I bought that didn’t work. Looks like a lot of stuff was bad. Well you can benefit from my stupidity.

Little Airport Sticker Activity Book (Dover Little Activity Books)

Didn’t care.

Puppies at Play – Imaginetics

The magnet board didn’t work. F that.

ScotchBlue Painter’s Tape

I read that kids dig this on planes on a blog. G was like “what the shit is this? Tape? Please.”

The other thing that we did do was iPad apps and shows. G is so active that this didn’t really work too well. You can’t hear anything on planes and the day he lets me put headphones on him is the day I can put a hat/sunglasses/anything ever on him (never).

But if you’re looking for app recommendations, I like The Monster at the End of the Book, anything by Duck Duck Moose, Art Maker, Elmo alphabet, Yo Gabba Gabba shows and Peek a Boo Barn.

Now, I hope this helps you out a little. In return, I’m hoping you can help me. For those of you out there with 2 or more kids close together in age, please tell me the stuff you like to make your life easier. i.e. double strollers, stuff for the car, or just really anything that will make me sort of feel like a sane person. I thank you.

Good luck in your travels. And I’m glad I’m not you.

MODG

 

 

 

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POSTED IN: Mom Stuff,Stuff I like,Toddlers

{ 74 comments }

Theresa May 23, 2012 at 9:07 pm

For toddler apps, I highly recommend Tozzle – which are puzzles. My 2.5 year old is a wiz at these and it keeps him occupied when I’m trying to have a melt-down-free moment.

Melissa May 23, 2012 at 9:12 pm

Oh geez. I loved these last two posts. But I’m
Screwed! In July we fly to Seattle (from new jersey) with a 4 1/2 month old. I’m dreading it :-/

Emily May 23, 2012 at 10:11 pm

Melissa – We flew with my son at 4 months and 6 months. The 4-month flight was by far the easiest. He ate on the way up and down and slept the rest. It was about a 3.5 hour flight. I guess all kids are different, but from what I hear from other moms, the younger when they fly, the better. Just thought maybe I would give you an ounce of hope ;-)

audrey May 24, 2012 at 12:48 am

I flew with my little guy from Seattle to Boston when he was 3 months, and it was cake. He mostly slept and was a dream baby for all 4 planes we were on. Flying at 6 months was ok too. It got harder as he got older. I flew solo with him at 13 months and 15 months and that was waaaay harder. But nursing on take off and landing was the best advice I got for flying with the wee one.

allisen May 24, 2012 at 10:39 am

4.5 months are easy peezy. It’s when they’re big enough to want to move around that it gets hard. We’ve had a couple stewardesses tell us that under 9 months, they usually do just fine.

Julia May 24, 2012 at 10:11 am

Agreed. 4 months is easy peasy. We flew from Ohio to California with two layovers when my daughter was 4 months. She ate and slept the whole way. When they can start to actually move – it gets way harder. We just took an hour flight when she was 9 months and that was so exhausting. I’ll take little baby flights any day.

Una May 24, 2012 at 12:20 pm

I flew with my then-5 1/2 month old to the Philippines, which included a 16 1/2 hour flight to Hong Kong both there and back. I realize now that this was insane. But he was amazing. Those flights were actually less stressful than taking the subway with a stroller.

Of course, everything changes when they start to be able to crawl and walk, so I trust MODG and everyone else who says it’s total effing nightmare time.

Hannah Mayer May 23, 2012 at 9:14 pm

I have three girls – 3, 1 and 5 months. The first two are 16 months apart and the second and third are 14. I’ve found that getting balls drunk on cheap wine every night is a really effective way of coping with the stress that accompanies having little kids close together in age. Oh, and sometimes I snort my Zoloft instead of waiting for it to dissolve in my beer.

Beth May 24, 2012 at 12:24 pm

HAHA! This comment just outed me at work for not working. Two kids exactly 2 years apart–I can relate!

Janina May 23, 2012 at 9:16 pm

The monster at the end of the book was my favorite book as a kid! Loves me some Grover.

Robyn May 23, 2012 at 9:21 pm

Buy a really comfy sling! And even considering buying G his own baby that he can ‘tend’ to while youre taking care of the new baby.

And just a suggestion as my kids are 25 months apart (now 2 and 7 months).. Before the baby came we started prefilling sippy cups and putting them on the bottom shelf of the fridge. And also small snack bags of goldfish and such, and we started showing our daughter how to get them herself before her brother came. Helped a lot when I was nursing and couldnt get up fast to get her a drink.. Also we started having her bring us diapers, wipes, clean shirts (we kept a basket on the floor in her room) before he came, so that once he came if I was nursing him (or just lazy :/ ) she knew where these things were and what to do! :)

Annie May 29, 2012 at 7:10 pm

I completely agree! For me the sling was the most important baby item. My two boys are 2 1/2 years apart, and being able to carry one hands-free while dealing with the toddler was huge. I never bothered with a double stroller–they are HUGE and look absolutely nightmarish to tote around and try to get in and out of places. I had one in the stroller and one in the sling, or you can reverse it and have little one in the stroller and big one walking alongside. And really, even if your baby is challenging, you realize that the toddler is challenging-er. The little ones are really portable, easy to feed, and don’t run away. Also those above suggestions about helping the toddler to help themselves to things is a great idea! Love that.

You will survive. Things may be a blur for a while, but I learned to accept that. My boys are both teens now, and everybody’s still alive. They even shared a room until they were 12 and 15. Be encouraged!

Elizabeth May 23, 2012 at 9:26 pm

As far as the double strollers go, DON’T get the side-by-side. They are insanely wide and will never fit between racks in the stores. Not to mention sidewalks. Get the front-to-back tandem kind. They are like a g.d. train that is hard to control sometimes, but at least you’ll be able to still do anything besides only walk down the middle of the street.

Another thing to get is a Baby Trend Snap n Go universal stroller for the infant carrier. This thing will save your life and if not that, then your arms. It folds up small and is light. Keep it in your car at all times. Whenever you get out for anything, pop the infant carrier into it and you’re good to go – no hauling around that giant, heavy thing. And G can help you push it so you can still keep track of him, too. Because that’s what’s going to stress you the hell out… having to keep him close to you and under control while navigating parking lots and basically anywhere while also being responsible for new baby.

And, always take the baby carrier out first, get it situated in the Snap n Go, get your purse/diaper bag, all that shit, and THEN pull out G. Because it’s really hard to keep little kids from darting out in front of cars while you’re trying to wrangle the obnoxious infant carrier out of the car! Have your shit together BEFORE you get out the walker/darter-into-trafficer.

And good luck. But you’ll survive. :-)

Kelly May 24, 2012 at 7:57 am

where is the “like” button? Totally agree with all suggestions on this post!

Moni May 24, 2012 at 1:46 pm

Agreed on the snap n go! 2 boys 17months apart, and it was a life saver for quick trips to the store!

Keri May 24, 2012 at 1:51 pm

Agree with all this! Side by sides are stupid, I hate them. Double stroller that is awesome is Phil and Teds, because it’s basically the size of a single stroller, and you just buy like a jump seat that fits under. and if G doesn’t want to sit down- you can fill the jump seat with your crap, without feeling like you a driving a freaking enormous stroller around. also, if you wanted to jog with it- becuase you want to run far, far away from you house that smells like two kids’ diapers full of shit- you can do that too!

nat May 25, 2012 at 11:34 am

Couldn’t disagree more! I have the Valco twin side by side double stroller, I have been using it for 2 years and 3 months. Fits in all doorways I have encountered, pushes like an absolute dream, and had attachments for a carseat so when my youngest was an infant, she was in her car seat on one side with her brother (2 years older) on the other side. My 51 lb 4 year old and 25 lb 2 year old still go in it (3x / week at least) and still going strong.
Those front back ones that are super long are impossible to turn, mine turns on a dime. Can lock front wheels if desired. mine never are.
Phil and Ted’s is a good one but my son (at age 2) already exceeded the 30 lb weight limit, and it seemed crazy to have a kid sitting basically under the other one.
Just had to add my 2 cents! I love my valco!!

justjenny May 26, 2012 at 9:33 am

I don’t have two kids, but I have to say as a general pedestrian, I HATE those side by side strollers when people use them. They make everything difficult for everyone within a 5 foot radius. So “great recommendation!” from everyone else in the world who has to share a sidewalk with one of those strollers!

Holly May 31, 2012 at 9:06 pm

I also hate the side-by-side action. I am drooling over the Britax B-ready. It’s a double stroller that can hold two car seats OR two toddler seats OR one toddler seat and one carseat. Also a bassinet option. I suggested it to a friend about to have twins and she replied, “oh thanks, but I really want a side-by-side…” WHATEVER! NO one likes a side-by-side.

Kait May 23, 2012 at 9:29 pm

We have four kids within 22 months of each other and seriously, the things that kept us sane were ridiculously basic. Don’t buy a ton of shit because you really, seriously, totally don’t need it. If you do buy anything, buy it in bulk because even though G might totally be over swaddling blankets (or rattles or whatever) you can bet your ass that if the baby has one he’s going to want one too.

Double strollers are kind of a pain so my suggestion is buy or try a ton of them from Craigslist or Once Upon A Child or something before you invest in one. Get G and another bigger kid in it because you want to know how that’s going to handle when you’ve got two older toddlers.

My best advice though is start now with explaining to G that there are certain things he’ll have to share and certain things he won’t. Our oldest child was pumped with each additional kid but our second daughter was PISSED that she wasn’t the only child. She’s kind of a drama queen. It helps, a lot more than I ever expected, when the possession lines are clearly drawn. This is HER seat at the dinner table and she won’t have to share it. This is HER bed and she will never have to share it unless she wants to. These are HER toys, this is HER book, etc etc etc. We had stuff out for the little ones long before they were ever home so she could adjust to the idea of their stuff and her stuff and community stuff. We also put in carseats and high chairs and those kinds of things really early too so she could adjust to the idea of those things being there, in those spaces, and who they belonged to. When she’s throwing an epic fit about having to share Mommy/Daddy/toys/whatever she finds a lot of comfort in going in her own space, with her own things, and knowing that we will always defend her right to that space from her siblings.

Sarah van Loon May 23, 2012 at 9:29 pm

I don’t have kids, but as a nanny, this double stroller was the end-all-be-all. It is AMAZING (and it’s going great 2 years strong!). http://www.amazon.com/Contours-Options-Tandem-Stroller-Ruby/dp/B002R26LZM/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1337822626&sr=8-1 (Kolcraft Double). It also comes with a carseat attachment so you can take off one of those seats and put the attachment on and then just stick the baby in with it’s carseat. SO EASY!!! Really easy to move around, TONS of storage – I really cannot recommend this highly enough.

At first I wasn’t thrilled when the parents bought it because I thought I wanted a side-by-side stroller versus a tandem, but this style was SO MUCH BETTER. I can get through so many doors without a problem, the seats change direction (they can both face front, both face back, both face away, and both face in towards each other), and I can take one of the seats off if I only have one kid (or one wants to walk) and I need/want more storage underneath. It also comes with two cupholders. It’s fucking genuius. Seriously, I could go on and on and on about how much I love this stroller!

Oh, and here is the car seat adapter: http://www.amazon.com/Contours-Tandem-Car-Seat-Attachment/dp/B001HDCYYO/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1337822626&sr=8-3 ($25!)

Hope this helps!

Ramie May 23, 2012 at 9:30 pm

I have two kids the same age, aka twins. I recommend a double jogger and a double umbrella. Get a cheap double umbrella for throwing in your car to have just in case. Double strollers are KEY with two.

Rebecca May 23, 2012 at 9:44 pm

One the two kid thing, my son is 28 months and my daughter is 1 month. The only things I’ve found I can’t live without are the ergo and an exercise ball. The combo of in the ergo bouncing calms her down and I can take it to any room unlike the glider that is stuck in the bedroom. Also, I taped black construction paper that I cut into shapes on the ceiling of the playroom do she has something to look at. A month in, that’s all i’ve got. We didn’t get a double stroller because we can hardly get my son in it still. But if you have those kinds of kids that actually go for it, I would get one. I get sweaty as hell walking with the ergo on and pushing the stroller.

Jordan May 23, 2012 at 9:49 pm

My two are sixteen months apart and the Ergo saved my life for four solid months. Now, my daughter has decided she’s above that shit and doesn’t want to be worn around while I chase her hellspawn brother around all day – so I’m kind of at a loss. I’ll be scanning the comments for some ideas myself. :/

alex May 25, 2012 at 7:00 pm

HAHA! “hellspawn brother”. god that made me laugh.

Jen @ Ginger Guide May 23, 2012 at 10:02 pm

You are wise, MODG and thanks for being a tester of this crap. I’m going to order this on Amazon tonight and defend it to my husband when it shows up a week from now. I’m blaming you, just so we’re clear, but I have a feeling after our flight, my husband may be writing you love letters, I really don’t know.

Stacey May 23, 2012 at 10:13 pm

Double stroller was good for me for seriously like 3 months if that, such a waste of money. Its so big and bulky, hard to get through doors or manuever through clothing racks hint hint. Takes up so much space in the car and they are heavy that you never bother to take it. Once my lil one was able to sit in the Umbrella stroller yup I the mean Mom made my 2 yr old walk or she thought it was really fun to stand on the back of the stroller and just hitch a ride.

Susan May 23, 2012 at 10:39 pm

Just went on a trip recently with my 17mo daughter, my sister and her 7mo son. Here’s a photo (if it uploads) of how we looked going through the airport with a double stroller, two carry-ons each, two carseats and the little ones in carriers…

[img]https://sphotos.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-snc7/s720x720/292557_3081094157394_1565038308_32070890_1660838069_n.jpg[/img]

Rach May 23, 2012 at 10:42 pm

OMG Monster at the End of This Book… Grover, right?? One of my all time favorite books from my childhood. Ever.

Two other books I would recommend:

Simple Pictures Are Best… by Nancy Willard, illustrated by Tomie dePaola. My mom would read this to us and embellish THE HELL out of the story… and we would DIE laughing and make her tell it again!! Hm. Maybe this is not a good recommendation for momma, so much as it is for G… (psst G, make her get you this one, you’ll crack up!!)

Goodnight Gorilla… by Peggy Rathmann. Best in board book form. I gave this once at a baby shower about a decade ago… and it was such a crazy hit, I have given it at every one since, plus bought one for myself for visiting nieces/nephews (and, who are we kidding, my eventual baby bookshelf!)… it’s sweet and you can adapt the story and pick out the pictures… and then ask baby/toddler/medium-size-kid to tell you the story instead of you telling it.

Glad you had such a good trip!

Ann May 30, 2012 at 11:21 am

If this is my Rach, and I think it is, she is totally right about the Goodnight Gorilla book – super cute! And I have like 3 copies of The Monster at the End of This Book for my little one – my absolute fav from childhood :)

And we just took a trip with our 3 year old and I printed out a map with our route highlighted to show her how far we had gone and how far we had yet to go – it was very helpful :) That and lots of wrapped dollar store crap, pipe cleaners to make stuff out of, glowsticks for when it got dark out, new snacks, and lots of dramamine…

Mary May 23, 2012 at 10:45 pm

Citymini double, w/ attachment
Ergo – best baby carrier
An iPad car case. Attaches to headrest.
Windi – look it up

larissa May 24, 2012 at 8:21 am

mary- which ipad car case do you have?

shelley May 23, 2012 at 11:21 pm

I think I figured out what my problem was on my flight – I didn’t have anything new! What a dum dum! I was just like, “(Sqqquuueeak!) Look! It’s your Sophie! That you’ve seen eleventy billion times already!” Thanks for the tips!

Ashley L. May 24, 2012 at 12:32 am

We’re new to having two kids (27 month old and 6 week old) but I would definitely recommend a double stroller. We like the Sit and Stand, ours is Joovy. Our son is very independent, he likes having the option being able to sit or stand. It’s also not quite as bulky as some of the other double strollers and can still function just fine with only one kid and allow me extra room for shopping bags.

Katie E. May 24, 2012 at 12:42 am

If Yoshi is another boy you can’t go wrong with cars, balls, and shovels. Since we live in a warmer area I see a lot of Stage 2 Sand and Water tables. Those are house of toddler entertainment, and can work up to kindergarten if there is a younger sibling also playing with it. I think you already have one, but a small table and chairs for the kids to use for coloring or Play Dough or painting. I know that strollers are expensive, but I would recommend both an in-line double stroller, and a side by side jogging stroller. We live in a warm region and basically have summer 9 months out of the year, so we spend much time out doors and at outdoor festivals. A side by side jogging stroller lets both kids see what’s up at the cool little festivals and fairs. Less fussing. Good job on the plane stuff.

Sandra May 24, 2012 at 12:56 am

My kids are 18 months apart and I agree with Elizabeth on the limousine style double stroller instead of the side by side.

The side by sides are just way too wide for cruising the aisles at shops, etc. I got the shortest limousine style pram I could get which helped with the steering. I did look at getting a pram with a toddler seat instead but when the oldest child is still so young they still often fall asleep in the pram which doesn’t work as well in the toddler seat. In my pram the front seat was a seat which could recline a bit and the rear seat was the full lie down for the baby and convert to sit up seat as the baby got older. The only downside of one child being behind the other, in my case anyway, was that, as my daughter graduated to the sitting up stage, she took great delight in tugging gleefully on her older brothers hair (much to his disgust) when he was fast asleep in front of her. Upside, saved on toys :)

The only other thing I found helpful was one of those playpen things with a cover. If I had to hang up washing or whatever I would put the baby in the rocker and put the whole thing inside the playpen so that she couldn’t get accidentally pelted with toys or poked by her older brother while I was out of the room. I called it protective custody.

erin May 24, 2012 at 1:50 am

I have two kids who are 2yrs and 3 mos. apart. The Baby Jogger City Select stroller is awesome. It sucks because it is super expensive and you have to buy all the parts separately, but it is one of the few double strollers that is easily manueverable. The “cheaper” double strollers just don’t cut it. That is my only suggestion for now because my youngest is just 1 month old so I haven’t really gotten the hang of anything yet :)

Rachel B May 24, 2012 at 10:56 am

I have this stroller and it is the best thing I have ever purchased. We live in Los Angeles and walk ALL THE TIME. It can be a single or double stroller which is great for me because my kids are 3.5 years apart.. In the mornings I use it for jogs with just baby but we walk to the grocery later with both kids in it. The basket is huge and I have no complaints about the folding, steering or anything else. I only got the second seat (not infant attachment or pram) and I just wore baby until she was about 4 months and used it as a single. I pooled together all sorts of gift cards and asked for $$ for it for my birthday and it was worth every penny. BUT if I didn’t use it daily I’m not sure any stroller is worth that much.

I also recommend a backpack diaper bag when you have two kids. I was using a shoulder bag from my first pregnancy and always felt like I was going to fall over wearing baby, holding a toddlers hand, and carrying crap on my shoulder. I like the skip hop backpack a lot.

Camille May 24, 2012 at 2:54 am

You haven’t flown until you’ve flown ten hours transatlantically with a six-month old with an ear/sinus infection.
I hyperventilated on take-off and nearly had a panic attack. I’m not looking forward to doing it again now that he’s older and requires more to entertain him.

Also, I know everyone’s all Fa-la-la over the Ergo, but I LOVE my Beco Gemini. You can do a front carry (facing in or out), back carry for when they’re heavy (my 11-month old is 25 lbs and I can haul him around for a few hours without a break) or a side carry. Plus I bought it off eBay and got it for half the price. Seriously, invaluable. And I also agree with the double stroller thing–do NOT get the side-by-side one. Yeah, they look cute laying next to each other, but that goes away real fast by the time you realize you can’t get the thing out the front door.

Melissa May 31, 2012 at 9:23 pm

Agree! Beco Gemini is THE best $480 I ever spent. Ok, it’s way less
Than that, but that’s how much I spent on all the
Other crap baby carriers. BUY it! Mine are 2 years apart
Exactly & I use it for both my 9 month old & 2.5 year old on walks
And I honestly cannot fly without it or really do
Much without it. Now that my son is older i make
Dinner carryimg him in the Beco & my oldest is contained
in the Ingelsina table chair & I can feed them both at the same time by myself.
The beginning is rough though and the
Hardest part for me was not being able to be 100%
For both kids because you just can’t. For the first
Few weeks, we referred to the kids as “yours” and “mine”
And it broke my heart to not put my daughter to bed
Or give her a bath or even play with her because Oliver
Needed me or i needed to sleep & take care of myself.
BUT it gets better really fast & now it’s so fun to
See them playing together & Ellie just loves him
& loves to help. As for the stroller, wait to see
What you need before you buy. We spent a small
Fortune on the Valco with the toddler attachment
In the front & Oliver hated being in the back (small space) & Ellie
Only wanted to push it. But it also depends on
Where you live & what your lifestyle is like, but I would wait or get
Used. But do buy the Beco & then put G in & carry the baby
Or when Y is old enough you can switch! Thanks
For the flight recs! Great ideas! Congrats on #2! You’ll
be great!

Annalisa May 24, 2012 at 6:54 am

Thank you for the recs. We’ve flown with our 12 month old a bunch from 3 mos – 8 mos but now that she’s walking and gaining independence I dread the flight across the US with her in August.

If I couldn’t make life any worse for myself, I decided we needed to roadtrip for our family vacation – 11 hours! We leave tomorrow and I can’t tell you how much I spent on random car toys, ipad apps, and DVD rentals. I think we could have flown + rent the car for cheaper.

Anyway, I’m in the same boat as you with baby 2 except my babies will be 17 mos. apart. My strategy is to go minimalist on the double shit. I’ll do the moby/ergo for the baby and my little girl likes the stroller/grocery cart/wagon. I think when they are older I am investing in the serious wagon because every kid I see in that thing seems to completely be in love with it and it looks way cooler than a giant overpriced stroller. Other than that, I have no plans. I held my baby a ton but I think I can’t do that with #2 so I’m getting the boppy lounger and the fisher price rock-n-play sleeper since they both seem to simulate being held.

Katie R-G May 24, 2012 at 7:31 am

My plan when the newbie comes along is to use the Moby wrap, then graduate to our Mei Tai (got from Etsy and LOVE, super comfy, super versatile, and mom-made) and just have my toddler in her stroller or shopping cart. The double strollers look super overwhelming and huge, and since I’ll most likely only be going to the grocery store/Target with both kids in tow, that’ll be the only time I won’t have someone else around to assist. I already have too little trunk space.

Jessica May 24, 2012 at 8:38 am

OK, so my kids are all 2 years apart but there are only three of them and my baby is six now so that makes me kinda out-of-date in the products for babies department but I will tell you these things: A small umbrella stroller for G and an expensive carrier for Yoshi (back in the olden days a Mai Tai was the way to go because it was soft, light and could be used in many different ways) will be easier and simpler to handle than anything else. You can keep them in your vehicle at all times and go absolutely anywhere. Heavy or hard-to-manuever stuff is out if you are very active. Less is more. When you are going places with two kids you want a couple of diapers, some wipes, some water and some snacks – not a uhaul. Also, the mom talking about having drinks ready in the fridge and snacks pre-made knows what the eff she is talking about. I did that before each new baby was born and it was a lifesaver. In fact, do it for yourself too. And my most solid gold parenting advice for multiple children – pack a small bag in your vehicle with a change of clothing for everyone, including mommy. Trust me, you will need it.

Kiki May 24, 2012 at 8:55 am

A double stroller is a must. I liked the side by side ones best because the kids can interact with each other instead of one being in front of the other.

I tried a couple and liked the side by side one by Jeep best. It had flaps to “vent” the seats when it was hot. Lighter weight, easy to open and close and I was still using it when my girls were 5 and 6. That sh** has stopped now. It was a good work out though. It was also on the less expensive side too! And it was a side by side that would fit through doors. This was a lifesaver when I had to go anywhere alone with the two of them.

I tried a McLaren too, because I wanted to be cool. But the seats were already squooshing my girls at 1 and 2 and I knew it wouldn’t hold them long. Had to send it back.

Cassandra May 24, 2012 at 9:02 am

Maybe someone already said this but I thought I could get away w/out a double stroller. Wrong. We love our Phil and Ted’s Vibe and use it constantly. Great stroller.

Cat May 24, 2012 at 9:03 am

We adore our graco duoglider stroller – it fits easily in the back of the van (and fit in our Volvo as well) and can be folded/unfolded one handed. I was also grateful for our Snugli (or some kind of baby wrap) so I could tote baby brother while big brother played. I’m a big fan of The First Years True Fit convertible car seats. They’re a little bulky but super easy to clean and again you can buckle the kids out one handed. Also Fisher Price booster seats instead of a high chair – they are portable (for taking to restaurants if you’re crazy enough to go out with the kids) and they convert from high-chair to regular booster when the kids get older. I also bought a white-noise machine to plug in the hall outside baby’s room so he couldn’t hear all the noises from big brother while he was trying to nap. I’m sure there are a TON more products I love but they’re not coming to me at the moment. We had 3 in 3 years so I had a slew of “survival gear” but they’ve outgrown most of it by now. Oh, and we did love our jumperoo for keeping baby entertained and contained while big brother did crafts and things.

Sara May 24, 2012 at 9:07 am

Crocodile Dentist used to scare the shit out of me when I was little. And by little I mean like 10. Literally. He would chomp and just… there was shit everywhere.

Lauren B May 24, 2012 at 10:26 am

I am not married or a mom and yet I am fascinated by Stuff I Like posts focusing on G’s stuff. I never thought at age 24 that I would be extensively reading posts here and on YHL discussing cloth diapering or baby toys etc etc…but here I am.

On another (whiny reader) note, do we still get a Stuff I Like: T-shirt Edition post? <3 you modg!

Halley May 24, 2012 at 12:26 pm

I only have one baby, but I’d totally get rid of your chicco heavy ass infant car seat & buy a maxi cosi mico. It’s only 7 lbs and we have the gray one & it’s super sleek.
I cannot imagine hauling the chicco and a toddler. F that.
Also I know the valco baby double stroller is awesome & people love it. Plus it’s not too heavy.

mommylisa May 24, 2012 at 12:35 pm

My six year old still plays with that Doodler thing.

Anne May 24, 2012 at 1:50 pm

I have a Phil and Ted’s stroller for my kids (3 in 3 years!). Works with an infant carseat and a bigger kid in the back, two kids that can sit in regular seats, and for that day waaaay in the future (though I used it with my first child), it can be just a single stroller. Or you can leave the back seat on for your shopping bags. It is one of those strollers that with all the accessories it reaches into the $800 range, but SO WORTH IT!! It turns on a dime, I can steer it with one hand (when drinking Diet Coke in the other), I love it. Of course it’s bulky and takes up the entire trunk of your car, but all double strollers do. HIGHLY recommend!!

Shannon May 24, 2012 at 2:04 pm

I hacen’t found my sanity since I lost it when I had my second. I thought it would get easier with two kids (they can play with each other!) but it is a million gazillion times harder! Twice as much stuff and they argue all the time! I have no advice… just a big flashy warning sign :-)

Melanie May 24, 2012 at 2:10 pm

My only recommendation – that I learned after a very expensive visit to a child psychologist because I thought the new baby made the older child turn into pure evil – is that (if you plan to nurse again) find something that G can play with while you nurse. Make it something super-sparkle-tastic that he cannot even wait to get his grubby little hands on and begs you to nurse the baby so he can play with it. It may be expensive, but the older child (especially those that are still toddlers) do not appreciate sharing the boob with the new sibling and will make you aware of how insane you were to think that two kids would be a good time, so price won’t be an object. Get G something he loves and only let him play with it while your boobs are busy. You may have to switch it up as time goes on as kids have the attention spans of, well, kids, but it is so worth it. I struggled for months before this little trick came along.

April May 24, 2012 at 2:12 pm

I don’t know what I would have done without the ergo! Keeps baby happy (when can’t be put down) and your hands free for toddler. My youngest is 10 mon now and still happy in it while I take my oldest (now 3) to the playground, etc. He wouldn’t be happy sitting in the stroller that long though. Also, I’m happy with my City Mini Double. It’s not as wide as some other side by sides & pretty lightweight. Only negative is no storage underneath (bought a “mommy clip” for bags) & the infant car seat attachment is crap. But you don’t even need it- the seat goes all the way down, so you can put a newborn in it. I used the snap and go more than I expected though while my toddler walked. That thing is so convenient.
First time poster – love your blog!

Abby May 24, 2012 at 3:36 pm

Double umbrella stroller is awesome, especially for travel (I’m totally coveting the maclaren). Look for one where the seat can recline a little and you can strap the baby in at a really young age. You’ll probably want a single wide (sitting one in the front of the other) when they start bugging the shit out of each other.

Scozzie May 24, 2012 at 4:25 pm

I’m currently researching the same thing, here’s the verdict from my part of the world:
* BuggyBoard for those days when G can’t work out if he wants to walk or be in the buggy
* Phil & Teds yes yes yes
* Apparently when kid #2 arrives, kid #1 often regresses a bit like back into nappies, using a dummy, wanting milk from a baby bottle or to start breastfeeding… so have any shit you might need for G on hand before your due date
* Baby carrier of your choice (on that… we’ve just bought the new Stokke one and I love love love it… BUT it’s taken ages to get the hang of it compared to the Ergo etc. The super-duper mountaineering-inspired fastening are faffy and learning to use it with a squirmy 6 month old has been a pain in the bum. Which, of course, I will not admit to my husband.)
* FOR

Scozzie May 24, 2012 at 4:51 pm

So I’m a first time poster but researching the same thing & here are the pearls of wisdom (opinions) from my mummy buddies
* BuggyBoard or similar for the days G can’t decide if he wants to walk or be pushed.
* Baby carrier of your choice (I’ve just got the new Stokke and I love love love it. BUT it’s a faff to get used to compared to the Ergo, and the mountaineer-y clips are a pig when you’re first working it out. Bad enough with just one squirmy 6 month old. Not that I will admit that to my husband, hell no.)
* Phil & Teds, yes yes yes
* A sling you can breastfeed in eg moby wrap
* Apparently kid #1 usually regresses a bit when kid #2 arrives eg goes back into nappies, wants milk from a baby bottle or to breastfeed, plays with baby toys again… so have any supplies you might need for G on hand before your due date – which might include special new big boy stuff

Oh – and on the idea of getting a baby doll for G to “look after” – usually clever, but my older sister ripped the head off hers & flushed it down the toilet when she was cranky at the new baby (me). Weirdly at nearly 40 she still seems pissed at my existence on the planet…. So watch out for voodoo-doll treatment…

erin May 24, 2012 at 5:07 pm

i have 18 month old twins and baby #3 in the oven, due late october. seems you and i like procreating a month apart? anyways, we’ve had 4 strollers. single snap’n’go. bugaboo cameleon. contours options tandem stroller. bob revolution duallie. the two singles are great for when we would travel to SF and needed to separate. the contours one is great {it’s front and back, not side by side} for shopping. it comes with two seats and an infant car seat frame. the seats can easily be removed and face out, face you, face each other, on facing you, the other out, you get the picture. the bob duallie is my favorite. it’s side by side, but we use it for walks, farmers market and flying. you can cover this thing with diaper bags galore and duffels and still push it with your pinky. it’s amazing.

other stuff: buy a backpack diaper bag. i have two petunia pickle bottom boxy backpacks. i love them. they also have the abundance boxy backpack, which would be great to hold a billion cloth diapers, although i can manage just fine with the normal boxy. get an ergo carrier. they can be used on front, back carry and even side carry. i still like the sleepy/moby wrap when the baby is tiny tiny, but the ergo will save you when that baby’s bigger.

you’re going to have to teach G to be more patient. like not being able to pick him up when he wants or even do anything when he wants because your hands will be full from nursing or changing a diaper or whatever. my twins have gotten better since i’ve told them they need to wait until i’m done doing ____ before i can get/do _____. but it’s hard. it’s hard having two kids. at least with twins they progress at the same time, but i’m going to have TWO toddlers running away and trying to poke the baby’s eyes out.

good luck! :)

Lluvia May 24, 2012 at 6:52 pm

I loved this! I’ve been traveling with mine for a while. I agree with the other commenters, the first flights were easier as she was smaller. Now that she talks, walks, and runs, is a lot harder to keep her next to me.
The waiting for the boarding is what it’s so hard for me. She won’t sit still, and I have to chase her all over.
One thing that I suggest you get, is a BACKPACK! Yep. I’m sure it goes against whatever fashion you follow and stuff, but they’re practical and make it easy to chase the little one.
At one point, I had a backpack, and the baby on my front in the carrier. my hands were free to eat, drink, or haul the big suitcase at check-in.

:-)

Rebecca May 24, 2012 at 7:25 pm

Thanks MODG! I needed to be told what to buy, already bought!!

Kristen May 25, 2012 at 11:22 pm

I just booked a flight to CA for July 4th-11th to see my parents. Problem is, hubby has to work and can’t go. #1 is 3 and a half and #2 is 9 months old. I’ve flown solo with #1 before but NEVER with 2 of them. Help, anybody?!?!?!?!?!?

Supersassymomma May 26, 2012 at 10:25 pm

I’ll pray for you.

SapphireBell22 May 26, 2012 at 10:39 am

Definitely get a double stroller. I found that a side be side jogger worked the best and was the easiest to push with one hand and move around. Make sure it fits through standard doorways. The front/back stroller killed me and was a bitch to push in stores and turning it was a joke. Also, have a really good baby carrier so you can have hands free to play with your son – I loved the moby wrap for the first 3 months, then the ergo after. Hope that helps!

Supersassymomma May 26, 2012 at 10:23 pm

What the H?!?! I love you but this info would have been much more useful 3 weeks ago on our first trip to Grandmas. Please hone your psychic skillz. Much <3 P.S. Gratz on the new Peanut.

Brittany May 26, 2012 at 10:34 pm

I love your lists, especially lists that concern G. Mostly because I have a 2 year old nephew, and it gives me gift ideas. So, thanks MODG – you’re awesome.

Corynn May 27, 2012 at 2:29 pm

The best double stroller in my opinion is the Kolcraft Contours. Not only is it actually affordable ($250 as opposed to nearly $1,000 for the City Select), but it’s totally flexible. You can have infant carrier and seat, two seats facing forward, seats facing each other, seats facing you, etc. It’s big and heavy but how else are you going to lose the baby weight? I still use mine- my boys are now 2.5 and 17 months.

For those suggesting an umbrella stroller for the younger and letting the older walk, I try that sometimes and it’s just a crazy nightmare with my 2 year old running everywhere and being awful. Double stroller all the way.

erin May 27, 2012 at 4:20 pm

the thing to remember is that all babies are different and so your two personalities will need your own customization of baby gear. so, with that in mind it is helpful to just remember that it will take a while to learn how to go out and do things and get sh*t done when you have two. it took me quite a few outings before I figured it out and then you have to change it again when they grow and change. the first time I went out with my toddler and baby it was like gulf-war style operations were taking place :) if you know that it takes practice, it will might help reduce the stress (and make you want to try again even though it was really hard the first time you did it).

Hillary May 29, 2012 at 1:54 pm

We’ve just discovered my 13 month old loves painting. Who knew? While paints are clearly a ridiculous idea to bring on a plane, I love the idea of a doodler. We’ll be flying from MI to OR when he is 16 months and we’re FREAKING OUT! Our child is a running, yelling, tantrum-throwing, hilarious, smart, spitfire ball of energy. We don’t have the luxury of buying an extra seat (hence the trip when he’s still a “lap child”), so I’m desperately looking for advice from those who have children like mine.

Alison May 29, 2012 at 10:53 pm

Yessss, I comment like once every never, but thank you for blasting the Crocodile Dentist. We bought one of these at a stationery store when I was living in Korea as a “counting” game to play in the English classes we taught. It never made it to class because, turns out, Crocodile Dentist makes an even BETTER drinking game. So, if G is bored with it, you and B should totally use it for grown up play time (and I mean getting drunk… get your mind out of the gutter).

kristin May 30, 2012 at 2:33 pm

uh- i saw both of these listed on the previous comments… we have the phil and ted’s double stroller (a previous generation and it’s better now!) and kind of love how easy it is to maneuver. i think that sometimes i wish i had listened to my inner voice and got the sit and stand, which has a buckle if you need to harness the older kid (wish i had known that and i would have been sold).
the WORST thing about side by side strollers (aside from the doorway issue) is the kids bonking one another over, and over, and over again. tandem avoids all that CRAP.

Britty May 31, 2012 at 8:03 pm

I totally had the crocodile dentist! I seriously played with that thing until I was a teenager. It still scares me.

Sara June 1, 2012 at 12:54 pm

What did people do before iPads??? My 3 year old loves it. I love it because he loves it. We haven’t taken him on a plane since he was 10 months old and that was easy. Now, I have a 3 year old and a 1 year old and it scares the shit out of me so I’ll be keeping your toy list in my back pocket.

Strollers for 2 – I researched this forever before making our purchase. We ended up with the Bumbleride Indie Twin and I LOVE IT. Highly recommend. Even my very, very active 3 year old still likes to ride in this. It’s also great for infants. I had a premie boy (weighed 3.5 lbs) a year ago and I had him in this stroller (without the carseat adapter) when he was 3 months old. He still only weighed 7 or 8 lbs and he loved this stroller. It reclines all the way back so he can sleep.
Also – the Baby Bjorn saved my life. Wish I’d had the Ergo so he could’ve stayed in it longer. You need 2 hands a lot more when you have a toddler and a baby. It’s insane.
If you don’t have a sound machine for G’s room. Get one now. :) Just trust me.

Jana June 28, 2012 at 10:56 am

So funny! We are crazy! We live overseas so we have flown over 25 hours to visit our family with our two sons (now ages 3 and 1). I have even done the flights alone with my oldest when he was 4 months and 1 year. You would believe how much I bring on those flights to survive! One domestic flight, our oldest son (age 2.5 at the time) had the runs. He was screaming, “I poo-poo!!!!” as we were buckled in for landing. We went through 4 diapers in 1 hour! My only advice, keep telling yourself that it’s only 1 day out of your life and you will get through it.

Ashley July 11, 2012 at 4:47 am

THANK YOU!
I have two boys… A is 2 yrs and B is 7 months. We are leaving Guam in about 2 weeks, flying to Ohio, then about 5 weeks after that flying to Italy. (We’re a military family) Anyways. I am totally starting to panic… ‘shit I need EVERYTHING!’ buying the dollar store crap was on my to-do list, but I was conflicted. I didn’t want to lug around a bag full of garbage that he’s not even going to look at. Thank you for confirming my suspicions. Luckily, A is a pretty hardcore movie junkie, so I’m hoping that gets us through the thick of it. We are talking roughly 30 hours on a plane in a little over a months time though, so I need lots of ideas!

As for the things that are saving my life right now? The sit and stand double stroller. A actually likes to ride in the back part bc it’s not a normal seat, so he is CLEARLY a big boy now. Gerber Organic baby food pouches, you know the squeezie kind? Well, I’ve been in Guam for a while so these things are relatively new to me. The are mess free and much more easily packed! They take up SO much less space. Also, anything color wonder. A LOVES markers… color wonder lets him explore that creativity without giving me palpitations.

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