Saturday, March 26, 2011

Traveling with an Infant: Hotels 101

So it's been 8 weeks since I've slept in the same room as Gunnar...and I have to say, I've slept better that way.  Being next to his every grunt and groan would wake me from even the deepest sleep. So the thought of sleeping in the same room with him for 4 nights did not exactly sound like a restful vacation, if you know what I mean.  But thanks again to my readers suggestions we were able to make things (mostly) enjoyable for both mom and baby.

Here is what worked for us.

1. Well first of all, call the hotel(s) before you book to see if they have cribs and find out exactly what kind they are, if you're not comfortable with what they have...find a different hotel, or bring your own pack 'n play or a tent.  I made the mistake of only checking to see if they had cribs and not what kind they had. Our first hotel had Graco Pack 'n Plays (which was fine), but our second hotel had very old bassinet sized iron painted cribs on wheels (this was cause for quite alarm and made me very uncomfortable...which could have been avoided if I had asked what kind of crib they had before booking). Also if they give you a pack 'n play ask if someone will come and set it up for you...I tried to do it myself and thought the crib was broken, but then the house manager came in and showed me how to do it.

2. Bring your own crib sheets. I was so thankful to have my own soft sheets. The first hotel had stiff starched crib sheets and the second didn't even have fitted sheets, they just folded a flat sheet around the mattress which really didn't seem safe at all. So I was glad to have my soft comfy sheets to make it feel more homey for Baby G.

3. We tried our best to stick to our bedtime rituals and schedule. Luckily Florida is on Eastern time so we could stay out an hour later without messing up his timing...but we really never got him in bed at his normal bedtime (it was just too hard to get ourselves dinner and ready to stay in the hotel room for the rest of the night that early)...but thankfully that didn't effect his sleeping (as he slept VERY well on vacation at least 9 hours every night!).  I brought his sleep sheep, books and bath soap and he adapted perfectly to the new environment.

4. Bring your own Queen size flat sheet. This was the best advice!! (Thanks Jenn!!) Since there wasn't enough room in the bathroom or closet to seclude the crib, I needed a way to make it darker for G once we put him down. So once we put G down I turned on his sleep sheep & covered the pack 'n play with a sheet so that it was darker. In doing this we were able to keep lights on and turn on the tv without disturbing him.  Then before I went to bed I took the sheet off. (This sheet can also come in handy for Beach time...more on that later.)

Aunt Kerry reading G his night time stories
So I was really terrified of the "orphanage crib" we were given at the second hotel. It was tiny and metal and looked ancient and not up to code.  I was convinced G was going to get tons of bruises from hitting his head and limbs on the metal (as he is sort of a violent sleeper, moves around quite a bit).  But after some reassurance from talking with my sister on the phone...I did decide to put him to sleep in the crib.  I heard him hit his head a couple of times through the night but he did not get any bruises. Overall he came out okay.  I just know that in the future I plan to call ahead to find out details on the cribs each hotel has...and I suggest you do the same!


  1. I'm glad you mentioned the sheet. Great idea!

  2. Tonight is my first night in a hotel with M! Love having a dark blanket so we vet to keep the lights on longer! Dad is reading and I'm on facebook. Baby went down w/o a fuss and made the trip to Peoria w/o a fuss (3.5 hrs) too!

  3. Glad to be of help! It's amazing how well little guys adapt to changes.