The clock is ticking and I have about 4 full days to go before we fly out on our first long haul trip. I know for the cool supermoms out there this is probably peanuts for you but for this “I dont know what I’m doing” kind of mom, it’s a bit nerve wracking—but also exhilarating! It’s almost like preparing for a race! Feeling triathlete lang ako! Hahaha! So I told Patrick yesterday “Love, I’m gonna be packing all weekend so please…please..help me..by NOT bothering me!” HAHAHAHA! TO which Patrick replied with a mischievous smile: “Oh let me HELP you! Please! Please! I’ll HELP YOU pack your clothes! I’ll style your outfits!!!” HEART ATTACK! Patrick styling my clothes?!?!?! OHMYGULAY. Me: “NOOOOOO!!! That’s not HELPING!!!!! HELP me by not HELPING!!! Gugulo lang lahaaaaat!” And of course Patrick just laughed and teased some more “Please, please!!” hahahahaha!!!
When it comes to prepping for a trip, Patrick just offers emotional support and just pretty much stays out of the way so I can have my zen! I know some parents are tandem packers and wow, HOORAY for you. In all things parenthood, we are a team–solid, united, equal players except in one aspect: PACKING. I’m a one-man iron man in this department because it’s my “thing”. And Patrick gives me my space when I’m in the zone. Even if I stress over it, I actually secretly LOVE IT.
I’ve been getting a lot of practical tips and a ton of woosahhhh from friends, family and you–my awesome readers–so I’m actually doing pretty good so far. Thanks to your encouragement, I’m actually feeling more excited than anxious now. I’ve been working on our itinerary and getting so giddy just thinking of all the new experiences Theo will be having— the sights, the sounds, the food!!! Oh he will have a ball for sure!! I can’t wait!! This trip will be amazing and I’m just so thankful we were able to score really good promo fares for this trip to push through.
Although, I won’t lie—I’m still not doing cartwheels over our 27 hour trip on Wednesday that crawls all the way to Thursday! EEEPPPP! It’ll feel like an eternity in transit but Patrick and I are determined to make it as painless as possible—you know painless like a wisdom extraction or childbirth without epidural! Ganun lang! Chill lang sya! Hahahaha!
I’ve learned that when it comes to new experiences with the baby, it’s all about an open mind and flexibility. The rest will follow. Chances are about 80% of your expectations will not be met and your plans will falter, but if you are set on having fun despite all the odds then it’ll all be worth it. So that’s where we’re at right now. We’ll prepare as much as we can, strategize, compromise, and jazzercise! Hahahaha! But at the same time, we will welcome plan B, C—all the way down to Z if needed.
Patrick and I have agreed not to fight during the trip because we need to work as a team, we literally only have each other. And this is not even romantic, it’s actually just for survival. HAHAHA. And if we do get into an argument (which I promise you, will happen) we already have a safe word for an immediate truce. So the word is “BUCHANGCHANG!” if someone shouts it—then the other will have to surrender. Okay, so it’s not the best word but we will use it for emergency purposes. Desperate measures. Para sa bayan. HAHAHA. If BUCHANGCHANG loses its power, then we will have to go Elsa on it and just probably sing LET IT GO to one another.
Okay so I have about a 15 minute window to spare for this post so if I’m rambling all over the place, forgive me. I gave my husband the puppy dog eyes “Babe can you watch the baby so I can just blog for a bit” with pa-cute smile and so he now is wrestling with our very pawis son. This is REAL blogging at its finest people. Hahaha. I figured since I’m learning all this for the first time, I might as well share the load with all of you. So here’s a quick run through of some of the things I’ve packed in my maleta so far. Again, this is not an expert mom’s maleta—this is a NEWBIE mom’s maleta! Hehehe 🙂
Theo’s room is a MESS. And by MESS, I mean TORNADO levels. But it’s all because I’m still trying to figure out how to slim down my packing list since we will only have 2 maletas with us. This means I have to edit, re-edit, and edit again. But the ones on this list are my must-haves and non-negotiables 🙂
So let me walk you through the list…let’s begin with suitcases. As you have already guessed by now, my vote goes to DELSEY agaaaaain and again. We have been traveling with DELSEY for many years now. It’s my go-to-brand especially when it comes to long haul flights. In our many journeys through the years, they haven’t failed us yet. Now that we have a baby, we’ve had to level up and go XL. We were fine traveling with our medium sized suitcases as husband and wife…but now as parents, we have become THOSE people in the airport traveling with mammoth luggage. For this trip, we will be using the SEGUR line for both our check-in bags (81cm) and carry ons (55cm). I chose the SEGUR line for 3 reasons 1)It has a washable lining that you can easily take out and pop into the washing machine. It’s just an OC moms dream! So this means, you can “refresh” your luggage after each trip. Goodbye germs!!! 2) Sleek design in 100% Polycarbonate—it’s easy to clean PLUS very instagrammy! Priorities! Yeyyy! Hahaha! 3)It’s expandable even if it’s a hard case and the zipper has zip securi-tech which makes it safer than other suitcases. I got our Delseys from Travel Club in UPTOWN BGC.
Next would be Theo’s clothes— About 80% of Theo’s clothes for this trip are from Gingersnaps. WHY? Because Gingersnaps makes all babies and toddlers look mabango. I SPEAK THE TRUTH and you know it. Just entering the Gingersnaps store in ATC is like being drenched in baby powder: Ang presko, ang bango, ang sarap! 🙂 We are traveling at an awkward transition between spring and summer so I really don’t know what weather to expect. So the key is to do layers and be creative in mixing and matching. I’ll try to take some snaps of Theo’s OOTDs on Instagram for y’all 🙂
To keep Theo’s clothes carefully segregated from Patrick’s and mine–I am organizing the piles through Space Paks (which I got from Flight 001 in High Street, I absolutely love love love that store!!! It’s a travel bug’s mecca!). These Space Paks have been staples in all my trips, they really do an amazing job of keeping our clothes neat and organized and it also compresses everything so well. It’s amazing how much clothes I’m able to pack and all the space I’m able to save with these travel compartments. They now come in cute prints too,,these seafoam ones are LOVE!
Since Theo’s barely a year old, I’ve been trying (operative word is TRYING) to make sure he eats healthy as much as possible. And healthy doesn’t necessarily mean high maintenance or expensive. On the contrary, I’m so lucky to have an easy-to-feed baby. He’s really an “ulam” kind of baby, mahilig sa lutong bahay! Because we live down South, he has adapted the probinsyano lifestyle. He likes eating home cooked meals with meat, veggies and fruits. His favorites include squash, sayote, melon, pears, cauliflower. He loves beef and chicken too!
When we are on the go though and don’t have time to cook a meal on the road or on the plane, we make sure we pack a few bottles of EARTH’s BEST ORGANIC or these squeezable hearty meals by HAPPY BABY. The Vegetable and Beef Medley with Quinoa is great for those who are starting on their solid intake. There are so many options and combinations to choose from–with specific ages too. Be sure to check the labels and see what stage your little one should be on. Now that Theo is more into bigger chunks of solid and is graduating from the pureed stuff, what we do is we use these mushy food and add meat chunks or even rice to add texture and depth. All these are available in Healthy Options.
When it comes to snacks, instead of giving him treats with zero nutrition I try to give him snacks that are also yummy and healthy too. I know that I can’t be super strict and rigid, I have to accept that he will be exposed to all sorts of food as he grows older and I don’t want to completely deprive him. He’ll have pizza and ice cream too someday! Moderation is key 🙂 We are just regular folk, after all. But as much as possible, it would be great to fill his tiny belly with power food like these snacks, also from HEALTHY OPTIONS.
1)The Happy Yogis and Organic Creamies are Theo’s absolute FAVORITES. He’s like PACMAN munching on these pellets like it’s an 80s video game! I tell you, if I don’t properly monitor his intake—he could literally inhale a pack in one sitting so I have to make sure I watch him while he eats this. Hahaha! I tried it myself and it’s quite yummy too and packed with probiotics which is great for the digestive system. 2) Superfood Puffs which doubles as a maracas and dance shaker for my baby is another staple in our home. This is great to pack for road trips as it has a resealable container and packs neatly in any diaper bag. They are not too sweet and have creative combos of fruits&veggies incorporated into the cereal puffs. 3) Little Yums and Teethers are perfect teething biscuits—great introductions for those who are just getting the hang of having teeth! They provide comfort for itchy gums and are yummy too. When your baby is older and can take bigger solids, they can progress to Rice Cakes. 4) For travel, these organic OATS and CEREAL packs will be a God send. Easy to prepare and packed with nutrients!
So Theo is on the verge of walking. I know he will shock me any moment now but honestly I’m not in a rush. I want him to be a BABY FOREEEEVERRRRR so I’m sort of half-half on this. Of course I’m delighted to see him progress but I’m also in denial about him growing up so quickly. NOOOOOO. Anyway, we are now using some Walking Support shoes from Mothercare. They have a wide range of brands for both boys and girls—and in different designs too 🙂 Sooooo Patrick and I are ready for a workout–we will be chasing this bugoy all over Europe!!!
Next on my must-pack list—of course our Belo Baby Soap, Lotion and Hand and Body Wash! Theo loves this line so much and always smells so bango (after being covered in snot, pawis, and laway all day) after bathing. I know they probably have soaps and shampoos abroad but I really don’t want to experiment especially while on holiday. The last thing I want is a eczema attack or an allergy manifestation—I don’t need the extra stress. So I will feel much better if we use our Belo Baby line and have peace of mind.
Okay, so this is where it gets tricky for me. I’ve been obsessing over this for days now. This is why I desperately wanted to breastfeed Theo!!! Aside from the magic of breastmilk, I was all for the convenience of being able to feed your baby anywhere, anytime without having to bring a whole caboodle of things. You BF moms are LUCKY!!!
But for now, we are happily formula feeding Theo and have seen him thrive with it, so even if it’s admittedly inconvenient I am still so amazed to see how the Lord has nourished my son and he’s been so healthy ever since! Thank YOU LORD for your goodness!!!:) 🙂 Okay so my reality is I will be washing bottles throughout this trip and so my must haves include the following 1) A proper bottle brush and cleanser. Make sure you get a gentle cleanser that won’t leave any residue or chemicals! All natural is the way to go! 2) Mixie Bottles–i swear by these travel friendly bottles. Pop and Go! 3) Disposable Cold Water Sterilizer Bags OR Microwave Sterilizer Bags—both will save you the trouble of having to carry your giant sterilizer on the road. Just pack several pieces to use and dispose after each use. All of these (except Mixies) are available in Mothercare. I always get my essentials at Mothercare because they have the best quality products and the staff there are always so helpful. They are very knowledgable about their inventory and make each shopping experience really productive for me. The one in BGC is always my favorite!! I’ll be sure to post more finds from Mothercare soon. 🙂
The products I’ve mentioned above so far are all tried and tested by yours truly. But this next batch on the photo below are new on my radar but I’ve read countless reviews on this products with all stellar reports, so I guess it’ll be worth trying them. All of these items are also available in Healthy Options. 1) Since we’ll be outdoors a lot, we’ll have to make sure Theo gets ample protection with this Mineral Sunscreen that doesn’t contain harmful gunk. 2) Don’t you just think those Flushable Wipes are amazeballs!!! Good for the pwet and Mother Earth too. 3) I would advise for you to consult your pedia, once you get a go signal—you may want to try the homeopathic remedies and vitamins available in their store 4) Theo has been eating A LOT so we are slowly introducing the toothbrush. We have been using Spiffies wipes but we will slowly alternate starting next week to make him transition slowly.
My little boy sitting by the bed while mama packs his mountain of stuff. It still amazes me how this tiny human can require so MANY THINGS!!!! It’s not even like I have a high maintenance family, we are pretty cowboy as a unit but the reality is really—a BABY needs STUFF and by STUFF, I mean a whole barangay of items! So I’ve embraced the fact that I may not be able to look as chic and stylish in this trip because I’ll probably have to trim my OOTDs into half to make room for Theo’s things and just survive with basics 🙂 TOP Priority is that my son is happy and healthy throughout the trip—and gwapo and mabango (well at least for the pictures!). Come on moms, you know what I mean. After that photo is taken, it’s laway-pawis-uhog all over! Bahala ka na, anak!! HAHAHA! So if you see me look relatively decent in a photo, please give me a thumbs up because that would mean I made an extra effort to look good in between diaper changes, doing the laundry, sterilizing, washing, and cooking.
So there, this sums up our must-have-in-our-maleta list for now. I am dedicating the entire weekend to packing, so wish me luck. 🙂 🙂 If you have any tips for me, send them my way! Happy and practical and low maintenance suggestions only please. I want to keep things as simple and REAL as possible. If I discover more products that work for Theo, I will surely post here. Okay, 15 minutes done. I actually exceeded to 20 minutes so we better wrap this up. Thank you for reading this and for bearing with my scatter-brain post. Hahaha!