Stress-Free Holidays

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For many families, the arrival of November means that holiday travel and activities are just around the corner.  Traveling with children, especially small children comes with its unique set of challenges which can create a deal of stress for parents that piles on top of the natural stress that comes with the holiday season. Additionally, traveling can take its toll on your little ones which may manifest itself as temper tantrums or a tendency to become overstimulated. Wouldn’t it be great if you didn’t have to worry so much about these things happening during this time of celebration? Today, we are discussing some tips to help you and your family to enjoy stress-free holidays this year.

Before traveling

There are plenty of things to consider while you are in the planning stages of your holiday vacation. One way to ensure stress-free holidays with the kids is to involve them in the planning of your trip and the activities you will do while you’re away. If the kids are participating in the process of planning the trip, they are going to be much more excited about the trip and less likely to be bored or meltdown while you’re away. If you are going to be staying with family while on vacation, make sure that you talk to them about childproofing.  You can offer to bring along the needed supplies to help them out with the process and provide you with greater peace of mind. When it comes time to pack for the trip, it pays to get input from your kids about what gets packed but do not let them pack their bags themselves.  Unfortunately, children have a tendency to pack a lot of items that they won’t need which can cause issues if they leave out needed items.

In transit

One great way to help achieve stress-free holidays while traveling is to make sure that you have a large number of family games ready in case of delays. One of the reasons delays are such a negative for kids is because nothing is happening so providing them with something to do will help keep their minds off their boredom.  You may also consider giving them a camera to encourage them to pay more attention to their surroundings while traveling and to capture their unique perspective on your journey. From a safety perspective, be sure to bring hand sanitizer and use it liberally to help keep your kids from getting sick. Traveling with children is difficult enough without having to through in the stress of caring for a sick child. If you will be staying in any hotels, bring duct tape to tape back curtain cords, secure cabinets, or perform any other necessary childproofing.

After you arrive

Once you have arrived at your destination, give your kids some time to recover from the trip and be sure to include a chance to acclimate to any time zone changes as well. On each day of the trip, let your kids know what activities you will be enjoying each day you are away. Children thrive on routine and giving them a clear picture of what they will be doing each day helps to create stress-free holidays for all involved. You may also want to consider eating dinner earlier than usual because the excitement of the trip will wear them out sooner than normal. Additionally, make sure not to overload the schedule as it can lead to overstimulation and meltdowns from your little ones.