Saturday, August 8, 2009

Baby in tow: gear

One of the most difficult things in preparing for the trip was figuring out what to bring, what I could leave behind, and what I could buy there.

I brought:
--a stroller (indispensible--carried all the other stuff, and occasionally the baby)
--a carseat (which I didn't end up using--doesn't work on public transportation, but if I had ended up needing a taxi, would have wanted it)
--diaper bag (which doubled as a purse in the airport--I used the conference bag once we arrived)

I used the carrier car seat even though Chiquita was pushing the limits because it fit in the stroller. So going through the airport, I had the carseat on the stroller with Chiquita in the carseat, the diaper bag under the stroller, and was pulling the suitcase. Cumbersome but it worked. No way I could have maneuvered a pack and play too.

I also brought:
--a wrap carrier (an evening walking tour was part of the conference, and the location didn't look stroller-friendly)
--breast pump (but the one bottle I pumped was never consumed)
--two days of diapers and baby food
--a few favorite small toys and her "loveys"

I wished I had:
--my cell phone charger. I needed to have my cell phone on when the babysitter had Chiquita, so I didn't get to talk to my family as much as I would have liked.
--a good bib. The disposable ones were useless; the tabs on the back had no stickiness, and Chiquita ripped them off before I could get any food in her mouth.

My plan was to buy diapers and food when we got there. Turns out this was a bigger deal than I anticipated--there was NO shopping closer than a mile away. We found some, but it was a considerable time drain. So my advice is MAKE SURE THERE IS SOMEWHERE NEARBY TO BUY WHAT YOU PLAN TO BUY.

I didn't bring a pack n play. After striking out in the "borrow from friends or churches in the area" category, I "rented" one from someone on Craig's List. This worked out ridiculously well, as the person also gave me a ride to our accomodations (and back to the airport) for about the same price as cab fare.

If you've brought baby before, what gear was helpful? What didn't you use?


  1. If the baby is small and your suitcase is large, you can use the *empty* suitcase sitting on the floor, lined with a blanket from home as a portable crib. A large drawer pulled from the hotel dresser also works.

  2. we use to order diapers, food, formula and wipes we need for a trip & have it shipped. You can send a box to yourself c/o the hotel and it will be waiting for you when you get there!

    Also, even if you sleep with your baby, most hotels will provide a portable crib/packnplay, which makes taking showers, getting dressed, etc easier with a baby.

  3. also, for a young toddler, we like the ergobaby carrier. It's less bulky that some others & my daughter can sit up unlike a sling, see the world and is very content. I recommend it for strolling the conference or social occasions.