Lightly? Are you kidding? No, if you have kids, there's no such thing as traveling lightly. It’s more like “Have Children, Will Travel Like a Freakin' Pack Mule.” Consider my checklist for my airplane carryon in light of our upcoming trip:
THE BARE NECESSITIES:
--Diapers, lots of them
--Plastic bags, lots of them for dirty diapers or spit-up-saturated clothing
--Burpcloths, lots of them (yes, my 9-month-old still frequently hurls and now that she’s eating solids, her spit-up comes in a rainbow of colors)
--Snacks, lots of them, including Puffs, Cheerios, crackers, raisins, Power Bars (for Mommy and Daddy; we may need the extra power), etc.
--A few jars of baby food and a couple of baby spoons
--My Modest Mum nursing cover
--17 pacis or thereabouts
--Distractions for an antsy baby and/or preschooler, including a small stuffed animal, Color Wonder coloring books, a board book or two, a few plastic figurines, teethers, etc.
--The baby's elephant lovey
--Gum for popping ears
--Tylenol (both adult and kids)
--Several $5 bills in case we need to buy drinks for everyone around us to make up for a crying baby and/or a whiny preschooler*
IN CASE OF AN EMERGENCY:
--Two changes of clothing for baby and preschooler
--Change of shirt for Mommy
--Manual breast pump
--One receptacle for storing pumped breastmilk
--A few spare pacifiers
IN CASE OF A MIRACLE:
--A novel and magazine for me to read during the flight
*I cannot claim this idea as my own. I credit a friend of mine who recently braved flying alone with her 9-week-old and upon the suggestion of her husband, tucked a few extra $5 bills into her purse just in case her baby had a marathon crying jag and she needed to make nice with her fellow passengers. I spoke with her today and she fortunately returned home with her cash.