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Preparing your child for winter break

When you go on vacation, do you find it difficult to get back into your daily routines? Imagine how difficult that is for young children who tend to have better days when there is some structure and a normal routine.  So, to make this holiday season more relaxing and enjoyable for all, maintain a regular daily routine as much as possible. Start with consistent bedtimes and wake-up times, keep meals and snacks as much on schedule as possible, and remember that with sugar highs come sugar lows! With holiday gatherings, meal times and what is being served can shift as well. If this is the case for your family, give your children a healthy snack or small meal at their regular times, so they won’t get cranky or overstimulated. And if you are staying late at a party and the children are with you, ask your hosts if there is a quiet place you can put your children down to rest at their regular time.

My child’s preschool sent this information out in its latest newsletter to parents.  I thought I would be helpful to pass along.  Since my younger one was in diapers we’ve tried very hard to maintain some semblance of a routine on vacation.

But it can be tough.  We are on vacation now.  And our 4-year old is sleeping in bed with us and the baby is in the crib in our room.  When one gets up, we all get up.

Also my kids like it nice and dark in the room for naps. Our room at the hotel has an ocean view (very nice).   But the mid-afternoon sun streams in even with the blinds closed during naptime- (not so nice)

Our hotel offers ice cream by the pool every 3pm.  On day one our 4-year old discovered this. Guess what we’re doing every day at 3pm now?

But here a few thoughts that might make vacation life a little easier:

-Keep the same nighttime routine on vacation that you do at home. Do things in the same order, for example eat, bath, stories, sleep.  Try to have roughly the same bedtime and wake up time

-You probably bring your children’s loveys and/or favorite blanket on vacation.  But you may consider packing one of your baby’s crib sheets so baby has something familiar in the new crib.

-A tip I learned from a girlfriend- If your child is really sensitive to light during naps, pack a few of those large black trash bags and some tape to cover over the windows.

-There is going to be more snacking and sweets on vacation. But carry healthy snacks around so kids aren’t just snarfing down the bad stuff.

-I’m a big fan of using a log sheet for babies and young toddlers- writing down when they take their naps and eat.  This is also a great tool on vacations. Between trips to the beach, pool, snack bar- it might be hard to keep track of when did baby last eat or sleep.

-Schedule in some quiet time with books if your older child refuses to nap

-Schedule some quiet time or exercise for you too.  If you can, take turns with a family member to make sure everyone gets a break on vacation.


Category: Travel and Vacation

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