A Lifestylye Blog

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

5 Things I Learned Traveling with a Toddler- Family Trip to Mexico!

Our family had the amazing opportunity to enjoy an all-inclusive package trip at the Hyatt Ziva Los Cabos in San Jose del Cabo in Mexico sponsored on behalf of my husband's company- Legacy Builders. It was a bit of a gamble deciding whether we would bring our toddler daughter with us and in the end, we're so glad we did! This resort helped make our decision just that much easier with kids activities/water park, all you can eat food (no need to think about preparing food), room service and lots of outdoor space. So my experience may be a little biased in that way. But hey, if you're going to travel with children, this is likely the way to go. It saves so much headache and stress in the long run. I share some more about what we learned below!

1) They can add so much fun and spontaneity.  Chaya was such a joy. She forced me to laugh more, get out more, play in the water more (much longer than I planned), splash around more, let go, run about the hallways, meet new people and more!

2) Their minds are full of so much wonder. I found myself enjoying a lot more of the simple things like walking around, enjoying the feeling of sand between my toes, sitting in front of the fire and just watching its flames bow in and out for minutes at a time, facing my head up and stretching my arms out wide to feel the ocean breeze, seeing airplanes fly in and out of the airport wondering where they're coming from and what their story is. Seeing the world through their eyes enhances things beyond our usual imagination.

3) They still need some structure. Naptimes, lots of snacks, mealtimes, downtime balanced with playtime were still a means for survival traveling with this toddler. But we maintained flexibility with these things. Sometimes we slept on a lounge chair outside by the water and sometimes we went back to the room. The first two years of Chaya's life I battled with guilt that we didn't follow this regimented structure for naps, meals, bedtimes and where she took and had them. But I've learned that with some of the flexibility we've maintained with how those happened, Chaya has actually turned out to be an amazing traveler because of it! We were able to still stay out late, watch the shows and have our fun as we have learned to have her adapt to OUR schedule versus the other way around.

One late night, we were all cozied up by the outdoor bonfire as we were greeted and joined by another beautiful young family with a daughter right around Chaya's age. We shared great conversation and laughter over our alternative parenting styles for bringing our children with us on this type of vacation and allowing them to stay up late with us. So all you parents out there who follow similar suit, you're not alone and you are not being bad parent! Shake that guilt away.

4) They need options! Especially during the "travel" parts in the airport and on the airplane. I stocked up our bag with lots of her favorite snacks, water, ipad with games and movies pre-downloaded, a change of clothes, markers, a sticker book, kids headphones, and a mini ball to bounce around during layovers. But she also enjoyed random knick-knacks from my purse like sunglasses, a hair-tie, a pen, etc. Anytime we were on the verge of a meltdown (aka boredom), we switched out one activity for the other to keep things interesting.

5) Your trip doesn't have to suffer! While we don't plan on always brining our children with us when we travel in the future, we found for this earlier toddler age that bringing Chaya with us was an amazing enhancement. Twos don't have to be terrible. We adjusted our expectations and knew we probably weren't going to go deep sea diving or fly-boarding together. But we still very much enjoyed the more family-friendly activities that were available to us. We took turns when needed. During naptimes and after Chaya had gone to sleep we still enjoyed quality time together and romantic moments. We built special memories and strengthened our family bond. It was a beautiful trip and hopefully this will encourage and give hope to other parents who either do not have the child care resources or who are simply not ready to take that long and far of a trip separately. You can have it your way :)

**We're so thankful for Legacy Builders who supports families, provides amazing opportunities like this one and rewards hard work. My husband and I have experienced tremendous freedom in time, finances and relationships. We couldn't have found better people to work with, do life with, and grow business with together. 


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