Flying with a toddler – It’s gonna be great!

Don’t be scared – Be prepared!!! I would definitely say that is my motto when travelling with Emily. I believe the key to flying with children is to prepare with NASA type precision!

Lists, lists and more lists… they have truly become my best friend when embarking on any journey. I keep the lists on my phone so as soon as I think of something, I put it into the list so I do not forget about it later. I also have a large bag that sits on the dining room table the week before we fly. As I open cupboards, linen closets or buy things for the holiday, it goes straight into the bag to be packed in the suitcase.

The biggest stressor is the flight. Any flight longer than 2 hours, for me, requires a lot more thought. Toddlers in particular are very active little beings and need an outlet for their energy. This can pose a problem when you are confined to an aeroplane for 11 hours. The only way to get through those hours and keep your sanity is to have a few tricks up your sleeve to distract, entertain and soothe your child, aaaaaand Relax. A stressed parent, means a stressed child. I thought I would include some of the things that I will be including in Emily’s on-board bag…

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Distraction tactics
These are the type of things you will use if your toddler gets board or begins to fuss
-puzzles
-books
-sticker books
-snacks

Entertainment tactics
These are the type of items that you know your toddlers loves and sparks his/her interest
-play dough
-colouring-in book
-ipad apps and preloaded videos as your last resort… (Yes!! I am THAT parent)

Soothing tactics
These are the things you will need to soothe an upset toddler/baby who is either tired, crying or has earache from the cabin pressure
-favourite or familiar toy (For Emily, it is her white bunny)
-dummy and dummy clip (a dummy clip is important so you don’y have to spend your time picking up a dummy off the floor)
-paracetamol (make sure it is under 100 ml)
-gro bag (this will help your little one to sleep better as the blankets will not keep falling off)
-milk (I find filing the bottle 3/4 of the way to the top the easiest. The stewardess can top it up with hot water, add the toddler formula powder and voila!! sorted) If you use cows milk, the cabin crew will happily warm it up but will take a bit longer so be prepared for that.

Airport Security
If you have never flown with your child before, this can be stressful to think about. Always check with your airline carrier but most of them will allow you to check in a car seat in addition to your child’s luggage at no extra cost.

You will also be allowed to go up to the boarding gate with a fold down buggy. It will then be folded and placed in the hold. Some airlines will have the buggy waiting for you when you disembark, some will send your buggy to baggage reclaim.

You can take food and milk through security but be prepared to sample it. You can also buy formula in the terminal just check with the airport website to pre order your formula to be collected. They may also scan the buggy at security as well. Security have been nothing but lovely with me when I am with Emily so hopefully you will have a good experience too.

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Holidays are supposed to be exciting and wonderful. If you prepare for every eventuality, you WILL be fine on the road trip/flight/journey. Preparation is key. There are so may great blogs and websites with more information so spend some time looking around the internet for ideas and inspiration. I’d love to hear from you if you have any other “must have” items for travelling or any questions.

Happy holidays and Bon Voyage!!

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Bread

Paleo Banana Bread

I simply cannot take credit for this amazing recipe. It comes from Elana’s pantry (another great website full of wonderful paleo recipes). I made a couple of changes to fit my own personal taste. This is one of the nicest banana bread recipes I have tried in a very long time and the best part is… it is paleo/primal!!

Make sure the bananas are very ripe. I used butter (grass fed butter only) as I was after the rich taste the butter would offer but you can use coconut oil if you prefer. The original recipe uses palm shortening but it is difficult to find in the UK.

This bread is so easy to put together and is simply delicious as an afternoon treat with a cup of tea or coffee.

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 Ingredients:
3 bananas (about 1-½ cups) mashed
3 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon honey
¼ cup coconut oil/butter
2 cups blanched almond flour/ground almonds
½ teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon baking soda

Method:
Line your bread tin with baking paper
Place bananas, eggs, vanilla, honey and oil/butter in a food processor
Pulse ingredients together
Pulse in almond flour, salt and baking soda
Scoop batter into your lined bread tin
Bake at 180°C for 55-65 minutes
Remove from oven and allow to cool

Serves 12