So it’s been a year since we visited the Baby World Fair at Expo.
This is where we got a lot of our “big” baby purchases: Squishy’s Graco Citi Ace stroller, my Medela Swing Maxi pump (an excellent choice), Medela Calma bottles (a not-so-excellent one), a box of Dr. Brown’s bottles (I remember this being a spur-of-the-moment decision — ended up saving the day for Squishy in the early months!), two huge packs of newborn GOO.N diapers based on positive mommy reviews on Singapore forums (but since GOO.N is not as widely available, we’ve since switched to Kao Merries), breastfeeding pillows I hardly ever used, and a bottle rack.
Now we’re back with the actual baby!
I kept seeing parents with boxes of diapers, breast pump starter kits, brand new strollers wrapped in plastic and other practical, useful things necessary to keep baby fed, cleaned, or alive.
On the other hand, we ended up coming home with this:
A homemade ball pit! (Circa 1990’s-McDonald’s inspired, with none of the questionable hygiene.)
1. The I-Know-You’re-About-To-Take-A-Photo-So-Let-Me-Spoil-It-For-You Troll
Me: Hey hey look, he’s standing up by himself! Kunin mo yung camera, dali! (Get the camera, quick!) Baby: *spots camera, sits butt back down* Me:Aww, sige next time. *puts away camera* Baby: *stands again*
2. The Playing-Hard-To-Get Troll
Me: Baby, please come back! Wala ka pang diaper! (You’re not wearing diapers!) Baby: *looks back, sees you scrambling after him, then crawls faster in the opposite direction*
3. The Pa-Simple Drop Troll
Me: *puts blocks on high chair for baby to play with* Baby: *gets a block, bangs it about for a little while* Me: Don’t drop the block, please. Baby: *holds block over floor, but looks in opposite direction of block* Me: Don’t drop it, love. Baby: *drops block* Me: Hay. *picks up*
* REPEAT CYCLE x INFINITY *
4. The E-nergyyy! Troll
Me, thinking: After HOURS of rocking baby and humming Brahms’ nonstop, he’s finally asleep! *gently places baby on bed* Baby: *opens eyes WIDE* Me: Hay.
5. The I-Don’t-Want-It-But-I-Actually-Do Troll
Me: Here, baby! Mommy bought some organic, banana-flavored teething rusks for you. You should like it. It looks exactly like that wooden toy you’ve been chewing on. Baby, probably thinking: Screw that. *throws rusk away, chews on wooden toy*
Sorry for the radio silence this past week. The Hubby and I were having a grand old time traipsing around the other side of the world sans baby Squishy… of course, we thought about him all the time so… there. Not as grand as it sounds really.
We wanted to bring him at first. He’s flown on planes before for short 3.5-hour flights back home to the Philippines. He seemed to be okay, with the usual caveats familiar to parents traveling with babies: baby will be okay ifone has an adequate supply of milk in the carry-on (plus extra), small toys to whip out in a flash in case baby gets bored, enough diapers and wet wipes and extra clothes in case of “accidents” mid-flight (yes, this happened to us — tricky business changing a poopy diaper in a cramped plane toilet when the plane suddenly hits a cloud… baby plane poop + clouds = MAJOR CHALLENGE), a pacifier for baby to chew on when the plane takes off and lands (supposed to help them deal with the pressure change), etc etc.
Add an infinite amount of patience dealing with strangers giving you and your baby the evil eye when (if?) the crying starts. I used to be one of those judge-y co-passengers before I had kids (“Ufff I’d never let my kid howl like that”) but now I understand completely. Trust me, those parents are trying their best. Babies being babies, they cry you know.
However our recent trip involved at least 14 hours of travel and untold potential for foreign germs to take hold of our little, not-even-one year old. So we decided to postpone Squishy’s first long-haul trip for later this year. Baby steps!
Incidentally, have any of you ever pumped on a long-haul flight? 🙂 I had to sit in a “prayer room” area (basically, it’s just a space at the back of the plane with a pull-down seat and a curtain that fastened at the sides) to pump. The annoying thing was that every time the seatbelt sign was switched on, I had to go back to my actual seat (after setting up the pump and everything! GAH). Also, there’s a chance a flight attendant / curious passenger will open the curtain and expose you in all your pumping glory. I got the Hubby to stand outside to guard against this eventuality. A nursing cover will also come in handy.
Anyway, in spite of the challenges of traveling with babies, I saw sooo many on our trip. Small kids in prams…
Kids on shoulders…
Older kids on Segways, even.
I have mad respect for those parents enduring the endless walking on cobblestones / crowds so thick you’re cheek-to-cheek / sweaty sticky heat with sweaty sticky kids in tow.
Kudos to you, traveling mums and dads! I hope your kiddos will remember something from the trip other than that ice cream cone you didn’t buy her. 😀
For those intrepid souls who insist on bringing the very little ones, here’s my go-to “traveling with infants” checklist. It’s based on a list from BabyCenter.com, a very useful resource for all things baby.
Traveling with Baby – Checklist
Diapers – One for each hour of travel, plus extra
Diaper changing pad – Baby bags usually come with one
Plastic bags – Very important, to store soiled diapers, etc
Diaper rash cream – Squishy uses Drapolene cream
Wipes – Non-scented, gentle formula preferred
Small bottle of hand gel or alcohol for disinfecting – We use the small Green Cross alcohol bottle (60ml) and just refill
Pacifiers, if baby uses one – Plus one extra in case the other drops to the floor
Extra outfits – Preferably easy to wear, think snaps not fiddly buttons
Socks – For when baby’s feet get cold
Lightweight feeding set – Some airlines, e.g. Singapore Airlines, offer child meals
Washable bibs / burp cloths – Generic wash cloths will also do for wiping spills, spit-ups, and messes
Formula / pumped milk / water / juice as applicable
Extra bottles / nipples / sippy cups as applicable
Breast pump – Don’t forget the batteries!
First aid kit – Include baby paracetamol (from your baby’s pediatrician) + dropper, and other supplies to treat minor injuries
Foldable baby tub
Bath oil / baby shampoo – Squishy uses QV brand
Baby nail cutter – For long vacations
Sling / front carrier
Collapsible pram / stroller
Hand fan – If you’re going somewhere humid like the Philippines
Contact details for your baby’s pediatrician – Just in case.
Incidentally, some airlines (e.g. Singapore Airlines) also have general baby amenities such as diapers, disposable bibs, feeding bottles, and baby wipes available. However these are limited in stock and they may not carry your baby’s size.
Also when you book an infant ticket, don’t forget to request for a bassinet.