Long drives/road trip, staycation/vacation, cruising/jet setting, junkets here and there.
Pretty much what everybody looks forward to every holidays.
Engk. Except me!
Don’t get me wrong, I used to get thrilled with the idea of packing for a trip, even short ones. Even last minute call from Jayson would summon my inner “Speed” packing clothes and stuff. It didn’t really matter be it week-long, or just weekends. Staycation, vacation, whatever, is just too cool to pass up.
And then, I became a mom.
It's true what they say, everything changes once you become a parent. Some things that used to be fun will no longer excite you.
You can call it boring and domesticated, but wait til you need to pack and unpack for 3 people with different needs; make sure the house is well kept and tidy for days you won't be around; and finish work errands just so they don’t pile up until you're back.
WOOOH #adulting. Exactly how I discovered the fun in boredom.
Anyhow, how do we get by?
I might sound like a broken record already but it really pays to have a list! And if you google packing list, you’ll find the simplest to the most extensive ones! You’ll also realize there are so many things to bring especially when you have a little human.
Clothes, food, toys/entertainment, toiletries, gadgets, the list just never seems to end.
Ugh if only we can bring our entire home.
But oh well, the least we can do is simplify some of the items!
1. Skin care
ALL in one skin Care
Instead of bringing separate products for cleanser, makeup remover, toner, moisturizer, and elixir, I opt for Voila Post Party Beauty. Don't be fooled by it's simplicity. This bottle does deliver each step in your regimen flawlessly. Even my husband can't leave home without it! It's the first and last thing he asks whenever we pack for a trip.
That makes 7 less products in our toiletries!
Perfect for #packinglight — if that ever applies
Available on Voila!
Voila! Baby Bubble Bath
Top to toe wash that’s ultra hydrating so I no longer need to apply a moisturizer afterwards. #Voila Baby Bubble Bath is made with VCO and jojoba oils that will surely leave your baby’s skin soft and supple. And with lavender and tea tree oil, it will keep him smelling like a baby as these two are anti-bacterial by nature.
Our second favorite brand -
Human ♥︎ Nature.
We swear by this repellant's effectiveness to ward off mosquito without containing any toxic ingredient.
Another good thing about this product is it's oil based so it really sticks to the skin and lasts longer so you need not reapply frequently.
As an added bonus, it's made of sunflower oil, a moisturizing oil highly beneficial even on mum's skin.
Voila! Diaper Spray
Ever since I discovered this product, there's no way you can make me leave home without this in our diaper bag.
It's cleaning baby's bum effectively in the most convenient way, with the use of natural ingredients that are anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and antiseptic so you no longer need to worry about whether or not you 're able to clean your baby's skin thoroughly.
Not only that, this one's good as an alcohol-free sanitizer too!
Don't you just love products that can multi-task?
2. Cleaning / Disinfecting
K-MOM All Natural Baking Soda
"The ultimate cleaning solution"
We use it for just about everything in our home! From meticulous cleaning residues on store-bought produce to deep cleaning extra greasy dishes and pans, declogging a drain, relieving stomach reflux, to facial scrub; baking soda is no less than an '"everyday miracle" in the household.
And since we can only hope to bring our entire home during vacations, let's not leave the essential ones like this Baking Soda from K-Mom.
To add, we use this product to make a disinfectant solution for our toothbrushes. I cringe at the Idea of using stored brushes in our toiletries because FYI, studies claim that they are dirtier than your toiilet seat! EEEKK!!! I cringe even more with the thought of buying a new toothbrush for my sensitive gums, each and every time. Because hello, one, that toothbrush in our kit is a different one from home and we only use it on occasions, sayang diba? Two my sensitive gums require a special kind of toothbrush, and by special I mean, the expensive kind.
Thank heavens for baking soda! Just fill a mug halfway with boiling water and add 1 tablespoon powder, soak the brush, voila! Economical, eco-friendly way of reusing a clean toothbrush. Discovering this neat trick just makes me want to do a happy dance each time.
With this, I no longer need to bring dish soap for my little one's utensils. I just sprinkle this on his bowl, pour in boiling water, watch it sizzle and fizzle, rinse, Voila! germ-free / grease-free feeding items.
Why should we opt for baking soda?
Because the global market is saturated with an array of toxic cleaning products detrimental to our health. And it doesn't end in our homes. Once flushed down the drain, it goes straight to the ocean and harm the aquatic life.
Voila! Poo Pourri
Instead of bringing chemical made room deodorizer, we use Poo Pourri to do away with toilet stench each time we need to do a number two. Surprisingly, just a few spritz of this product in the bowl magically transforms your bathroom scent. And we're not just talking shit here, it's science! The oils in the product create a barrier on the top of the water and traps all of the odors below.
No more second thoughts about doing number 2 when you have the Poo Pourri with you
You probably know few things about our family by reading articles on this blog by now. If there are two things that are most obvious, it's one, we're adapting an eco-conscious lifestyle; and two, we're sort of a neat-freak. And if you're the type who reads labels and ingredients, you would know that the two don't go together that well. For this reason, investing in gadgets that effectively zaps viruses, bacteria, and germs without using chemicals are worth every dime.
Again, we're not aiming a germ-free home. We know how we need the good bacteria to balance our eco-system. But knowing our homes are free of pathogens and deadly diseases without using products that are harmful for the Earth is what we're after for.
After all, you can't buy peace of mind for the heck of it.
That's a carrot cupcake. And not just any other carrot cupcake. say whaaat!!
Breastfeeding or not I do think you should take this with you esp that looking after a toddler requires a lot of energy. While we may be tempted to eat whatever is easily available we should keep in mind we’re rearing a little human, and it is but a must to also take good care of our selves.
Good thing lactation treats are a thing now. Other than these healthy yummy snacks are galactagogues, they contain healthy ingredients to boost your energy on top of increasing milk supply.
While there are abundant lactation cookie and brownies out there, Sweet Delights by Charlotte is bringing her A-game with the delectable Cheesecake brownie and carrot cupcake. These have always been my go-to energy-boosting snacks on days I'm too tied to prepare breakfast, and too swamped to eat dinner.
Mother Nurture 7-in-1 coffee mix also fits the bill. It contains active ingredients such as stevia, malunggay, Gotu Kola, Ashitaba all of which are highly beneficial to our over-all health. Available in selected distributors nationwide but I get my stocks from Breast Bottle Beyond.
This is a tad salty for toddlers and processed, but why do I have it in my list? It's a good go-to breakfast or even a meal if you know how to make it work on your favor.
So how do I make sure I'm not doing shortcuts for Atlas?
photo credits: costcocouple.com
Easypeasy lemon squeezy!
For every tablespoon of oatscaldo, I also have a tablespoon or two of organic, whole wheat, quick cooking oatmeal. The Bob's Red Mill kind.
Oats are loaded with vitamins and minerals.
Lest we know, it contains iron too. For that
reason, it has always been our holy grail of
what to give Atlas when we're out and about, and the options are limited to fried, processed, nutrient less food.
That's not all, I whip heaps of veggies in the food processor and mix it in. Winner, I know!
And on vacation days, we can't help but be thankful for ....
Just a teaspoon of this "miracle tree" in powder or flake form supercharges my little tot's food into Vitamin A and C packed grub.
Also available from mommy Ana of Breast Bottle Beyond.
Book - Reflection notes / Pen & Notebook - Powerbank
Hey, we need our own loot too! What's yours?
Traveling with a toddler can get really messy, literally and figuratively. That's why it's important to prepare an entire system of entertainment scheme so little ms. or mr. high energy is distracted.
To keep ours busy, we prepare a "long drive battle plan" which includes all his favorite toys.
While toys keep them occupied, their short attention span only lets them appreciate a toy for as much as 20 minutes. So we make sure we keep the toys and fun flowing. One momma friend suggested we gift wrap the small toys so we can buy more time as he would need to unwrap first before he gets to play with it.
Do consider the 100 things to do on a car journey if you think toys aren't enough. The lineup of activities is a good transition for each toy and it will surely keep them entertained until nap or snack time.
And yes, don't forget about snacks! It's the best to keep these little monsters busy for a longer stretch.
5. Baby Gear
KidsMe Suction Bowl with Feeding Spoon Set
So many things we love about this feeding set. One, the Suction Bowl features a secure lid that keeps food sealed in; two, it comes with a matching spoon which conveniently snaps on top of the fastened lid so it saves space making it perfect for travel; three, the bowl boasts a suction feature on the bottom to stay in place without the worry of flipping.
No more slides or spills, the Suction Bowl is designed to make mealtimes fun and secure even for on-the-go feeding.
KidsMe Training Cup
Handle on both sides
Soft grip handle
On top of that, my little one can't get his hands off this training cup! It encourages him to drink more fluids, even water. So easy to assemble, you wouldn't believe it's non-spill and leak-proof but it is! Definitely a must for every travel.
Stokke Flexi Bath
It is convenient to use at home or when traveling for its lightweight and uniquely foldable feature. Another good thing about this Flexi Bath® is its space saving design which makes up for easy transportation and storage.
We love that it's so easy to clean and maintain, plus, we've been using it since he was still a newborn and until now that he's a toddler. This bath is suitable from birth to four years.
Baby Zen Yoyo by Air France
Strollers have different profiles: Some are basic and regular, others are heavy duty and sturdy, some are versatile, others are perfectly engineered for a specific function. Then there's Baby Zen Yoyo, an innovative stroller that's exactly what every parent needs. Well-designed, versatile, sturdy stroller perfect for everyday and everywhere. Its well thought out design makes it a fashion accessory for parents who are fashionable as they travel. I mean, look at that!!
It is aesthetically designed without compromising anyone’s comfort, mobility, and safety.
If you haven't chosen your compact stroller yet, good on you! This one is worth to try.
Check out Baby Zen on instagram and know more of their fashionable designs.
Joie Every Stage Car Seat
Installing a carseat equates to levelling up your little one's safety when you're on the road. Although most would probably see this device as a luxury, a carseat is more than just a necessity. Not only that they come with a hefty tag, these have specific safety features that are designed only for a certain age bracket. Meaning, you need to upgrade your car seat
But what a gift Joie is to parents! "The ultimate transporter" that grows with our little ones. It features four seats in 1, customisable body and head support to fit at every stage so you no longer need to buy 4 different car seats!
photo credits: Detsy Ruzek
So, can you really pack light with a toddler on a vacation?
Considering the sets of clothes for each family member, entertainment system for your toddler, food, first aid kit, cleaning tools, and just about everything to make sure your family enjoys a smooth, less dramatic, more fun out of town trip,
no, you can't.
But you can always pack smart.
I suddenly remembered my momma and I wanna give her a kiss on the cheek.