- Pack light because the clothes are heavy. Pack clothes for the whole family that can be worn multiple times like jeans and things that can layer and mix and match. I am always tempted to pack extra clothes for the kids in case of spills and messes but I also know that pajamas tops can be used as emergency undershirts and things that aren’t soiled can be reworn if necessary.
- Pack all the hats, gloves and coats in a carry-on duffle bag. This way you’ll have them all handy when you arrive at your destination and need them but you won’t have to manage multiple extra things at security and when boarding/deplaning.
- Leave the big and heavy gifts for the kids at home. There is no need to lug unnecessary large or heavy items both ways. Instead, take a picture of the gift for older kids or just a small part of the gift for younger kids to play with (this also helps prolong the holiday excitement when you get home!)
- Shop when you get there or online and ship ahead. Instead of buying gifts for people where you’re traveling to, wait to shop until you get there (if you’ll have time) or order the items online and have them shipped directly to your destination.
- Leave room in your luggage for coming back. If you’re visiting family for the holidays, you’ll most likely have gifts (or after-holiday shopping steals) to bring back and while you can ship them, I like to have extra room available in my suitcases. I’ve used a few different strategies for having space including:
- Nesting suitcases. Fill a small or mid-sized suitcase and pack it inside a larger suitcase or pack a soft sided duffle bag in your suitcase which gives you around twice the luggage space coming back and saves you from paying extra baggage fees.
- Take disposable items you’ll need. When traveling in the summer I usually have my family pick up diapers and wipes for us but in the winter I usually take enough for the trip (and I always take our favorite snacks and baby food). Once we’ve used up the diapers and eaten the snacks we have extra room in our suitcase to bring back our new treasures.
- Use expandable suitcases. Most suitcases now have an expandable portion that zips out to give you more packing space. I always leave it zipped up when we go so I’m guaranteed to have extra space coming back.
- Pack gifts. Take the gifts you have for your family in your suitcase instead of shipping ahead so you have room to bring back the gifts they give you in exchange.
- Pack little travel surprises in the kids’ carry-ons. I like to go to the dollar section of my favorite store and pick up little games, books and craft items to surprise the kids with on the plane. During the holidays I try to get holiday themed items to help them get excited!
3. Silliness. Having three kids we are in a constant state of silliness. Our kids love to be goofy and laugh. Showing off their cute, fun side with this goofy Santa’s Little Helpers card is one of my favorite ideas. The hats just make the card!
4. Doubles as an ornament. Whenever I get Christmas cards I never know what to do with them after the holidays are over. I end up putting the pictures away in a box and forget about them. This is such a cute way to save the photos of those special to you and have them out each year. It is great for Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles and yourself.
5. Year in Review. My absolute favorite is this card. I love that you can get your most precious and important moments as a family all in on this card. Such a fun way to share your memories!
It is National Adoption Month and I am finally sharing Ashlyn’s birth story.
Her doctor and nurse were super casual about her pushing. They were having a conversation and would tell her to push and at one point L and I both were kind of like um should she push? Ashlyn was sunny side up so the doctor had to turn her and finally L was able to push her head out, the doctor turned her again (I swear I thought he was going to break her neck) so we could see her chubby little face and that moment I will never forget. I remember crying saying she is so cute. Those cheeks still kill me! After that I got to cut her umbilical cord. It’s not as easy as it looks!
After we got her in the car and left I still couldn’t believe she was ours. This perfect little person, this person who is loved by so many was our baby girl.
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|Everly wearing the pink Moccs|
|Ashlyn in White|
|Headbands // Moccs // Ashlyn’s Leggings // Everly’s Leggings // Shirts // Stroller|