Spring is here and that means ... family road trip! I'm so glad you decided to travel with your little one because this is what family bonding is all about. Babies, even when they are the littlest, love to see and be in new places. Plus, think of all the amazing photo ops you will have for the baby book!
Being on the road with a baby and while breastfeeding can present a few challenges, but nothing you can't prepare yourself for, and nothing that can't be solved. Here are some tips to breastfeed while on a road trip. They're simple, but they can help your trip be easier and without any added stress.
1. You're going to need a cooler with ice packs if you are storing any extra breast milk that you pumped beforehand.
2. Pack shirts and clothes that you are comfortable nursing in.
3. Bring a nursing cover if that makes YOU feel more comfortable when nursing.
4. If you have one, bring your pump along with any spare parts just in case.
5. When driving, plan to stop. A lot. Keep your nursing schedule as best as you can. Never breastfeed baby in a moving car. You never want to take baby out of the car seat, and contorting your body to nurse while baby is strapped in isn't safe for you either.
6. Be mindful of what rest areas are on your route so you can plan accordingly.
7. When breastfeeding in public, know your rights in the states you will be in. But don't feel embarrassed about nursing in public. Baby needs to eat and don't let the ignorance of others make you feel bad about that.
8. As always, stay hydrated. Then drink an extra bottle of water.
9. Book a hotel that has a refrigerator with a tiny freezer (if possible) so you can store breast milk and keep ice packs frozen/cold. It is okay to leave breast milk at room temp for around six hours.
10. Stay calm! Some parents refuse to travel by car with a little one because of all the extra stuff needed, but good for you for deciding to do it. Family adventures are great for everyone, and if you stay calm and roll with whatever annoying things that may happen (getting lost, missing rest stop exit, spilling breast milk), you will have a great time.
What other tips can you add?
Image via Daniel Lobo/Flickr and ©iStock.com/spfoto