A few weeks ago, my family drove all the way to Perlis to see my dear uncle get married. We were excited and happy that he has found the one, insyaAllah. I was also excited to see my family members again because we usually go back to Kelantan maybe twice a year. Driving to Perlis takes up about 6 hours, depending on the traffic. I was excited to think about having a possible road trip but I was nervous thinking about how my baby would be in the car seat for 6 hours!
We carpooled and three cars drove all the way to Perlis.
We left right after Subuh. The kids didn’t have their shower, they woke up, diapers changed and we buckled them in their car seats and started the road trip.
Don’t get me wrong. My baby isn’t all smiles when she is the car seat. I have to pack beforehand all of her essential items to make sure that I can manage her mood through out the journey.
You shouldn’t expect that your child won’t get cranky at all because that’s impossible, especially if they have never sat in a car seat before.
The most important thing is that you consistently put your kids in the car seat before they are one month old. They will cry, and it’s okay. It get’s better with practice!
So here is how I make sure my baby is happy in the car seat.
#1 Always feed your baby before you leave
I forgot to add this point in the video but you should always try to make sure you feed your kid before you leave. If you leave really early, feed him or her first in the car and put them back in the car seat.
#2 Bring coffee
For my small family, this is a must. Not just for Aiman who is driving but for me too because I need to take care of my daughter. Sometimes you’d think you could just sleep at the back but when your baby isn’t asleep, you need to be awake and entertain her!
#3 Pack food for you and the baby
No matter where I go, I always have some sort of food or snack for her. Especially for a long road trip, you wan’t to minimize the number of stops you make unless you need to stop for a diaper change. You don’t know how bad the traffic can be especially during the school holidays!
I don’t have an ipad and I rarely give my phone to her. So to keep her entertained, I always bring some toys and books for her to play with.
I like to pack Jacob’s crackers just because we both can eat them haha.
#6 Act like you’re sleeping (so they fall asleep too)
Okay, I don’t know whether this works but I think it may (sometimes) work…especially if she is sleepy but is restraining herself from sleeping.
#7 Be patient
Sometimes, you’ve pulled all your cards out but nothing seems to work. So you really need to be patient and just follow her lead.
#8 Block the sunlight from your baby’s eyes
I bought car shades from Mothercare but you can also buy them from MR DIY or DAISO. If it’s really hot and the sun is shining really brightly, you might need some extra protection. In this video, you could see that I used my husband’s kain pelekat.
#9 Talk and play with them
It can get really boring but this is really important! Talking and playing with them can prevent them from whining and bursting into tears. So sing along to their favourite songs because they (and your mental health) need it!
#10 Give them safe objects or toys to distract them
When you’re out of tricks, just give them any safe objects they can play with. Honestly, they like to play with the weirdest things. My daughter likes to play with bottles and tissues.
#11 Play their favourite songs
Kids can already associate songs with moods. A few months back, she started watching Omar & Hana as well ass Didi & friends. They second I turn on their songs on Spotify whenever we’re driving, she instantly becomes quiet! She may not fall asleep, but she stops whining which is a miracle for me! So, I highly recommend you guys figuring out what their favourite tune is!
Travelling with kids can be challenging, but it takes practice. So hang in there!! You’re doing great, mommy <3
For more videos on what to pack when travelling with kids, click here.
If you’re travelling via flight and have never travelled with a baby, read our article on “7 Tips Travelling with Kids on a Long Haul Flight”.