Hello from Thailand

It is not always easy to know which country we are in. Maybe that is part of who we are. Nomads.

Today I am writing from Thailand. We packed up are things a week ago and flew from Barcelona to Doha. In Doha we had to wait a lot for our take off and we landed in Bangkok super late so I literally ran with Zoard and Assya to the check-in. We were the last one but who can say no to a mother of two little ones.

I did not fly alone but when we followed the strategy of “be kind to us and look at these cute children…”,my husband had to take the elevator (we took the escalators) because we had so many luggage.

I wish I took a picture of me with the nursing pillow on my neck and Assya in the carrier while pulling Zoard’s Trunki. Oh well!

I think the key to flying with children, is to view yourself as someone, who is part of a comic movie.

When Zoard had a massive melt-down because of lack of sleep, I admit I changed my philosophy and became the most patient Saint on this planet. This helped me when he was scratching, kicking me (we were waiting for our boarding).

I need to share something horrible that made me silently cry throughout our journey.

I understand that some grandmothers were idiots.

I understand that being under educated is a huge problem.

But roughly shaking a crying child is NOT going to help. It can cause serious injuries!!!

Gently rocking.

Humming.

Walking.

Changing positions.

Taking big breaths.

These are techniques to follow.

Trying to make a crying baby drink, despite the fact that the baby is NOT  hungry/thirsty is WRONG.

STOP doing it when you see that your baby is gagging.
STOP when your baby is trying to turn his head away from the bottle. Or even your breasts.
STOP when your baby is still crying, no matter how many times you are trying to calm him with a bottle.

INSTEAD

Check his diaper. Change it even if it is “just” pee. Some babies are more sensitive than others.

Help your baby fall asleep. This can be done by patience on your part. Gentle rocking, singing, humming can help you. If the seatbelt sign is not on, start walking or squatting…

Being a parent can make you feel lonely and helpless, try to reach out for help.

You can connect with me on Instagram: @zoardminiboy.

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

How To Raise a Traveler

Traveling is really part of our life and I am embracing it more and more. Last month we stayed at five hotels in ten days and I felt I was fed up but then we got back to the island and after a few days, I was ready to talk about packing again.

This month we will be seen on three continents. We will spend five more days in Thailand, a week in Spain, a week in Hungary and ten days in the States. We will head back to Thailand once we had enough pie pops.

I really liked an approach, I never thought of,  that points out traveling teaches you an expected behavior that is useful (please read more about it on the travelsmartblog). I never thought of it this way. But it is certainly true, that our Zoard really knows how to behave at check-ins that take time, he understands the main rules on an airplane and automatically fastens his seat belt after sitting down; he understands that at times you need to take a car, a ferry, a bus, an airplane and a taxi to reach your destination. And at other times, you need to take three different airplanes to touch the ground you want to be at.

I also read that your way of dealing with the down-sides of traveling is also a lesson to learn. Fathomaway has some ground rules that I liked. I am an entertainer and I am beyond relaxed about traveling when my husband is with us. He does the packing and organizing and carries everything heavy while I chat away with Zoard.

At we3travel you can read tips about traveling with family. The article uses cute little symbols to help you understand the basics.

The reason, why I am not handing out advises is because I have already done so, toddler related here.  And baby related traveling here.

I received questions regarding Zoard’s personality and his attitude towards traveling.

He gets emotional about packing so though we might have our suitcases out a few days ahead, the real packing only takes place a day before leaving. We try to pack his toys and books the last. He does get involved in the packing to some extend but because he is a big fan of unpacking, I try to direct his attention towards checking under beds and in drawers to see if we leave anything behind.

I would not say he has a strong attachment to his stuffed rabbit but before going to the airport, he likes to hold it. He is always fine with putting the rabbit in a suitcase at the very last minute but that is the point when I make sure he can hold on to something else to feel secure. Today I gave him the case of my cell phone and I also had a rock in my pocket just in case. Later at the check-in, I gave him crackers and he was both satisfied with munching and just holding it. I guess, this is a trick good to know. Most children at this age like to hold something in their hands and if they do not have an object or a snack in their hands for some reason, it is smart to offer them something. Even a dirty tissue will do. Seriously!

I always tell Zoard the name of the hotel we are going to and if the hotel has a boring or difficult name, I just make one up. I call it maybe “the villa” or “the new hotel”. Zoard likes to know the logo of the company as well and he is also interested in knowing which company we are flying with. Did I mention that he is verbal beyond his age?! HAHA

I better wake Zoard up. We pulled the curtains in to make the room dark and I think we did too good of a job and he has been sleeping for almost three hours now instead of his usual two. We like to stick to his daily schedule no matter where we are.

Thanks for reading! Please feel free to follow us on Instagram: @zoardminiboy!!

SONY DSC

Long Flight with a Toddler

How long is long? We broke our trip in to two parts because we had to get to Barcelona by flying to Bangkok from Koh Samui. To Helsinki from Bangkok and we had a Helsinki – Barcelona flight in the end so the first part was Koh Samui – Bangkok and we spent two nights in Bangkok.

Bangkok – Helsinki was more than 11 hours.

Helsinki – Barcelona was an extra 3 hours, plus waiting in between.

Packing FOOD

Zoard does not eat salt nor sugar. My husband is on a low cholesterol diet and I breastfeed so I need some action when my blood sugar plays tricks on me.

Washed apples
Bananas

Cooked plain rice

Cooked chicken

Cheddar cheese

Whole grain, fitness bread (brand name: Delba)

Cooked beans, peas, corn and carrots

Two kinds of melon

Grapes

The last three was from a salad bar we went to in Bangkok. This was the most fun eating for Zoard since it was his finger food that he ate independently finding joy in picking out the bits he wanted.

Suggestion: you can never pack too much snacks.

When to Get on the Plane

If there is two of you my suggestion is that one of you take the advantage of being with a child so get on the air plane with those who can go first. Get everything sorted out, make a mental map of the things you brought along to survive the trip.

The parent with the toddler should get on last. Try to encourage your little one to run and climb and move around as much as possible.

When you are boarding to get on your last plane which if you are lucky is a shorter journey, board first. By that time, your son or daughter might be dead tired.

Entertaiment

We do not let Zoard watch any movies yet so we needed to prepare well ahead…

Zoard has been on a plane many times but nevertheless, this is an experience so make it special if you can. We started talking about this trip at least a week ahead. And as the date got closer I told more and more about our plans to Zoard. He knew that we would transfer in Finland and that his stroller will be checked-in with our other suitcases etc.

Seat back pocket and its treasures

Reading the Safety Card

Magazines (we found a magazines about trucks and vegetables while waiting… bonus!! Oh I am talking about 2 magazines by the way, not one about trucks AND vegetables HAHA)

Let your toddler MOVE around if you feel that he or she is safe doing so.

IMAG4052
Zoard found crawling to be safer.

Drawing

I put a rubber band around some pencils and we brought some paper.
If you draw a story it is an extra thing to do.

Photo Album

We printed out old photos with Zoard on them, plus I downloaded some pictures (and had them printed out) that I thought would make an interesting topic for Zoard. Puppies with sticks, helicopters, giraffe, old lady singing in a microphone, lady bug etc.

Matchbox Car

We bought a new one for Zoard when we thought his old one got lost. But I do not think you necessarily need to spend money on new toys.

Tip: hide some toys and small books a week or two before your trip. It will have a positive effect on your little one.

3 Rolls of Colorful Tape

We got these but did not use them in the end.

Duplo

Zoard likes to build the tops parts of Duplo cars so this was nice for him to do.

Mini plastic plane in a sock

Some kids like unwrapping I read. I used an old baby sock to hide a toy a week before.

Make up a new ritual or a game some days before your trip that your kid finds funny of fun

I found out that Zoard can guess the names of songs just by humming parts of the songs. Very entertaining!

How to DRESS your child

We are a bit unusual perhaps when it comes to dressing Zoard because for example, he did not have any shoes and I dislike socks on little kids.

Zoard wore

Cotton tights
Cotton pants
Bodysuit
Sweater
Cotton sweater that looks like a jacket

Diapers
I asked my husband to pack 7, he packed 10 and we used up 4 or 5.

Landings – take offs

Make your child suck.
Zoard is still breastfeeding…

Dried out skin (lips)

If anyone has an idea how to prevent cracked lips, I am happy to hear. Zoard was the least affected by this but I did put some olive oil on his lips today.

Sleeping

Zoard had his nap time when he usually sleeps during the afternoon though it was a little bit shorter and he also slept in the evening when we were flying from Helsinki. Both times he fell asleep breastfeeding and I rocked him a little bit.

Front row

On the longer flight we payed extra to sit in the front row. I highly recommend it.

Stay calm

Flying in the sky in something you chose to do. There are people who never leave their home and who do not have to deal with problems like flying with a toddler. It is part of the deal. Try to stay calm and plan ahead. Work with your partner as a team player and if you fly alone remember that you are part of the Super Heroes Club.

IMAG4046
Happy dancing on the floor…

We had a few melt downs when we were waiting for our last plane. It happens. It is not easy for a child… Be kind.