Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Travel-Tot Tip!

For longer trips, call ahead to see if your lodging provider offers laundering facilities or services - you may be able to pack less and save yourself some luggage fees if you can wash and reuse what you bring!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Boutique of the Week: My Precious Kid!

This week, Travel-Tot is proud to recognize a truly special boutique; My Precious Kid!  With a bright and inviting storefront located in picturesque Hillsboro, OR, My Precious Kid  is dedicated to child safety!
This spacious store houses hundreds of innovative products and boasts friendly, knowledgeable, and attentive staff

My Precious Kid, a sole proprietor company, was founded by Kay Green, who originally developed ID card products to fill a need for home school and adopted kids. Beginning with one product in 2001, her company now carries over 1600 products protecting kids, adults, and pets.

My Precious Kid's mission is to "Make Child Safety Easy."  To that end, the company manufactures its own ID kits and provides a wide variety of merchandise from outside manufacturers as well. Other products include ID cards, DNA and Fingerprint Kits, First Aid Kits, ID Bracelets, Shoe ID Stickers and ID Shoe Tags, Medical Records Book, Child Proofing Products, Cloth Diapers, and Travel products.

Kay Green is also a dedicated mother of four and grandmother of four, but her dedication to keeping children safe doesn't begin and end with her family or her business; Mrs. Green also shares her expertise coaching, mentoring, and working with other business women nationwide to achieve success. In addition, she hosts a blog and an online community through Facebook where parents can discuss a wide variety of topics and share their experience and concerns!

Kay Green and My Precious Kid have garnered several prestigious accolades, including: the Parent to Parent Adding Wisdom Award and being voted as Most Awesome Baby Boutique in the Portland area. In addition, the company's products have been mentioned on the Today Show, The View, and in numerous magazines, including: Parent Magazine, Woman's Day, Home Business Magazine, Working Mother Magazine, and Moms Business Magazine.

So if you find yourself in the greater Portland area, check out My Precious Kid! You'll instantly understand why they have garnered so much praise and a reputation for excellence!

Safe and happy travels.
-Destination Mom

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Travel-Tot Tip!

When staying in a hotel make sure to bring scented diaper disposal bags - they'll keep your room from smelling like a diaper pail.  Sassy makes a  powedered scented "Diaper Sak" in a compact, easily portable dispenser!  For refills check out Buy Buy Baby ($3.49 for 50 bags)!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Take-Along Travels With Baby... by Shelly Rivoli: Five Star Advice!

Author Shelly Rivoli has created the quintessential go-to guide for every parent who has every had to endure the anxiety associated with trying to sooth a screaming child on a plane, or change an explosive diaper in transit, or weather the never ending chanting of "are we there yet?" from the backseat.  Riddled with personal experiences and loaded with informative expertise, Take-Along Travels With Baby: Hundreds of Tips to Help During Travel with Your Baby, Toddler, and Preschooler is written in a humorous, accessible, and easy-to-digest format. 

Covering everything from planning, to in-transit, to check-in, Take-Along Travels With Baby features seasoned-family-traveller tips.  Rivoli provides numerous helpful bullet points, checklists, and how-to photos that can help keep young travellers safe, happy, entertained, fed, and sleeping as well as possible on family get-aways!  All this valuable information is broken down into small, easy-to read sections that make it the perfect choice for perusing while waiting in a doctor's office, or before pick-up from pre-school!  In addition, the author provides sections for parents to record important personal, medical, and emergency information, make notes, and stay organized.

Truly deserving of the numerous accolades it has garnered, this fantastic, fun read will appeal to every parent; whether you are embarking on your first family trip together or trying to avoid the pitfalls you have experienced on previous family get-aways!  Grab your copy today (or grab two - it makes a great gift for new parents!);  Take-Along Travels With Baby is truly an investment that will yield dividends in parental sanity and enjoyment of the journey for all!

Safe and happy travels!
-Destination Mom

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Travel-Tot Tip!

From Travel-Tot: Don’t forget to check under hotel beds when you FIRST get to a room with a child. You never know what evil lurks down there... and if you don't find it, your child will!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Baby's First Vacation: Taking Fear Out of the Equation!

Your first vacation with your child can be exciting and a bit nerve-wracking; whether your child is weeks old or starting to crawl, your first vacation is definitely a big wake up call! But there's no need to panic; with a little organization and planning (and these helpful tips!), you can be ready for whatever comes along!

To start, making a list will save you a lot of frustration and time. You'll want to pack to address everything from your child's health, to his or her day-to-day needs in terms of feedings, elimination, entertainment, safety, and comfort. Much of what you will need to pack will be determined by your destination, but the goal is to pack as efficiently as possible, minimizing the amount of unnecessary gear you bring along. In addition, you will need to address some basic health and safety precautions before you set out on your adventure.

Before You Go:

Scheduling your journey during your child's nap or bedtime is a great idea - after all, the more time your child spends sleeping during the journey, the less time you will need to occupy with play or other distractions! Just remember to bring along comfortable pajamas, books, or anything else that is a part of your usual routine.

If you are travelling with an infant, it is important to check with your pediatrician to be sure your child has had all necessary inoculations. Babies do not have fully formed immune systems and are far more susceptible to contracting illnesses than adults. In addition, it is always a good idea to pack any medications your child may require in a bag that will be easily accessible during the journey. A carry-on or diaper bag is a good choice; beware though, if you are flying you will need to familiarize yourself with the TSA limits regarding how much liquid you may carry on with you. Consider packing larger quantities of children's medications in your checked luggage for emergencies.


Packing clothes is relatively simple: a good rule of thumb is to pack a few more outfits than your baby would go through at home, and remember it never hurts to pack a few extra pajamas, socks and onesies! For extended trips, you may want to check with your lodging provider to see if they have laundry facilities. What you spend doing laundry you will easily save in excess luggage fees.

Diapers and Wipes:
For the majority of destinations, it is safe to assume that you will be able to acquire diapers, wipes, ointment, etc. once you arrive. But plan to pack enough for the flight or drive, plus a few extras for any unforeseen accidents or travel delays.  If you are uncertain as to whether you will be able to acquire those items once you arrive, consider using a company like Jet Set Babies - they deliver all the supplies you will need directly to your hotel!

Travelling without toys to occupy your child will inevitably result in disaster. Pack a wide variety to keep baby distracted along the way, including old stand-bys and a few new surprises! Avoid bringing noisy toys or items that could prove annoying to fellow travelers. To add to the fun, consider wrapping some toys (old or new!) in tissue or scrap paper and introduce items one at a time to extend their novelty and appeal!

The less gear you need to haul, the happier you will be, so look for items that can serve multiple purposes (i.e. a car-seat that converts to a stroller, a pack and play that can be used as both a play pen and for sleeping etc.). Another alternative is to explore the availability of rental gear; many popular vacation destinations have local companies that offer strollers or other baby gear that you can borrow for the duration of your stay for less than it may cost to lug all that gear on a plane. Also, many lodging providers now offer cribs, play yards, etc. upon request, which can help cut down on what you need to haul, so call ahead!


Bring along whatever baby-snack items (rice puffs, dry cereal, etc.) your child enjoys most - if you are flying, remember a sippy cup or pacifier to help equalize pressure on take-off and landing! And don't just pack for baby - bring along some finger-friendly snacks (granola bars, dried fruit, Goldfish crackers, pretzels, etc.) for Mom and Dad - you never know when you might run into a delay.

Air Travel Tips:
Though it offers you the best chance at stowing larger items overhead on a crowded flight, you are not required to board early;  if your child is not asleep, that's just 30 or so more minutes that he or she will be trapped in a confined space feeling antsy.

Once You Arrive:

Upon arrival, do a quick evaluation of your room; you may need to rearrange furniture to make play space and remove decorative items that could pose a hazard to your little explorer. You will also want to call ahead to see if your hotel offers any childproofing measures; if not bring along some basic child-proofing devices to child-proof your hotel room. The Travel-Tot Childproofing Kit is an ideal option with it's broad range of deterrent devices (outlet covers, corner guards, foam door pinch guard, multipurpose straps, cord guard etc.) and temporary, non-damaging adhesive. The Kit provides a layer of protection between your child and common hazards, while simultaneously affording you the peace of mind of knowing you won't be incurring extra expenses due to inadvertent damage to hotel property!

The extra few minutes you spend making a list ahead of time and childproofing your "home away from home" will result in a much more relaxed and enjoyable first vacation experience for everyone; and you will reap the reward of special memories that will last a lifetime!  Check out Travel-Tot's free, printable e-book featuring all these pointers and more - the perfect resource for planning your Baby's First Vacation!

Safe and happy travels!

- Destination Mom

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Travel-Tot Tip!

From Travel-Tot: When checking into a hotel, check to see what kind of childproofing the front desk can offer you (if you didn’t bring your own!). It never hurts to ask!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Fire Safety: Prevention and Planning

image courtesy of creativedoxfoto/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Fires are the fifth most common cause of accidental death in the U.S. (CDC 2005), killing more than 4,000 Americans each year. Sadly, many of these deaths could have been avoided if only a few simple preventative measures had been taken. Detection devices and a well-rehearsed escape plan could be the difference between life and death, so be sure to share these guidelines with your family:


Smoke detectors can save lives; but only if they are operational and can be heard.
  • Be sure to place smoke detectors on every level of your home, and especially in sleeping areas.
  • Smoke rises, so alarms should be mounted high on walls or ceilings according to package instructions.
  • Change batteries twice a year; many people do it the weekend of the switch from standard time to daylight-savings time, and vice-versa so they don't forget!
  • Test each smoke alarm in your home on a monthly basis to make sure the device is functioning properly.
  • Smoke detectors are not meant to last forever: detectors should be replaced at least every ten years.
  • When you purchase an alarm, look for the ETL, UL, or CSA mark on the box; this certifies that the alarm has been lab-tested for safety.


If a fire occurs in your home, detection alone is not enough. Your family should have a Fire Escape Plan to ensure the safety of all family members.
  • Practice your family's escape plan both during daylight hours and after dark.
  • If your residence is more than one story in height, keep a fire escape ladder in or near each bedroom above the ground floor.
  • If you live in a multiple-story dwelling and have an infant or young child who may not be able to negotiate a ladder, you should consider investing in a Baby Rescue; this flame-retardant, ventilated bag with a 50-foot-long tether is designed to allow you to get your kids out of the window and lower them down outside the building to safety. It is patented by Safety International, LLC and approved for children weighing up to 75lbs.
  • Be sure to stress to all family members that in the event of a fire, no one should try to save valuables; doing so could cost them their life.
Be sure to visit the U.S. Fire Administration homepage for additional information regarding fire safety. They have a vast collection of information, including Kids Pages, Fire Statistics, Prevention Campaigns, and a searchable listing of Fire-Safe Hotels/Motels!

Safe and happy autumn from all of us at Travel-Tot!
- Destination Mom

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Travel-Tot Tip!

From Travel-Tot: When travelling on a plane with small children, bring along some salty snacks to munch on while you’re waiting for the plane to take-off but hold off on the drink! That way when the plane takes off you are almost guaranteed some sippy cup action that will help equalize ears on the ascent!