Your Baby, the Road Warrior
So, one day you and your partner look up from your morning paper at the same moment, lock eyes, and exclaim, “Road trip!” What was once easy to do is now, with a baby in tow, more difficult. How can you drive long hours to get to your destination, without enduring long hours of a crying, fussy baby?
The good news is that you can travel on the road with a baby. In fact, road travel is sometimes easier than air or sea travel, simply because the motion of the car serves as a kind of anesthesia for babies; they almost always fall asleep in the car.
But before you hit the open road, you should plan ahead with some survival strategies, especially for those really long road trips.
Never take your baby out of the car seat — even for a few minutes — while the car is in motion. If she starts to cry hysterically while you're on the road, pull over and tend to her needs.
Use Car Seats Safely
Always use a rear-facing car seat for small infants, and position it correctly. If you're not sure of the correct position, read the manual for instructions. You'd be surprised how often well-meaning parents don't take the time to read the manual and do it right.
If you think baby just needs to see a friendly face, sit in the back with him or her for a few miles. Attach baby's toys to the car seat (and stroller) so that they stay with you on most of the trip.
Make Pit Stops
Stop frequently to change baby's diaper and/ or to feed baby. Just because baby is sleeping well doesn't mean you should try to make it to your destination nonstop. Believe me, if you let baby sleep the whole way to wherever you're going, you will get no sleep once you're there. Try to adhere to baby's regular schedule as much as possible.
Even though you want to make pit stops, don't stop too much. Avoid lots of starting and stopping. Take a smooth freeway ride and avoid the traffic and noise of the city whenever possible.