by Michele Spahr
Safe Start Baby
Traveling with a toddler is no easy task and once your reach your destination relaxation will be a priority. Unfortunately, if your accommodations are not babyproofed, you will spend your hours trailing behind your toddler while others are sipping eggnog by the fire. Follow these 10 simple steps and create a safe, stress-free, vacation.
1) Have a dialog with your host prior to arriving. Let them know your child’s developmental stage. For example: Johnny has learned to crawl and loves to put things in his mouth.
2) Scan the premises: If you notice breakables or valuables within reach, ask them to be moved. If necessary try a subtle approach: “I love your vase and I know Susie will too…do you mind if I move it?” Hopefully this small hint will encourage your host to check for other hazards.
3) Sink to their level: Go ahead, get down on your hands and knees and view the world through their eyes. You’ll be amazed by the hidden treasures you find lurking under beds, sofas, and behind tables.
4) Bring a few temporary babyproofing products, such as outlet plugs, latches, door knob covers, and portable gates. A portable gate is a great solution for blocking the bottom of a stairway and can prevent access/exit from a room. Remember that pressure gates should never to be used at the top of the stairs, instead install the gate in the hallway.
5) Masking tape and rubber bands may do the trick. Use masking tape on outlets and to tape back loose wires. Rubber bands around cabinet handles can prevent access to dangerous items.
6) Bring toys to keep your child entertained. Have a stash of special or new toys that may keep your child’s attention longer than his everyday toys.
7) Do not assume that someone else is watching your child- even in a house full of adults. If you must leave the area, specifically designate someone to watch your child. “Aunt Jenny, I am going in the other room. Can you be in charge of the baby?”
8) Ask and you might receive. Some hotels and/or resorts may have “babyproofed” rooms or products available. If they provide a crib check that it has not been recalled.
9) If your accommodations have a pool, beach, or other source of water, locking exteriors doors is a must, but not always realistic with so many people coming and going. Whenever possible ensure that pools are secured with fencing or covers and always provide constant supervision around water!
10) The kitchen is a busy place during the holidays and unintentional burns are at a high this time of year. Be sure to turn pot-handles towards the wall and use the back burners. When cooking, put your child in his highchair with toys. Crawling babies and their toys can be a dangerous tripping hazard.
Michele Spahr is mother of four and founder of Safe Start Baby. Safe Start Baby offers in-home assessments, professional installation, CPR training and an online webstore that carries hundreds of quality products to match your décor and meet your budget. Call today and see why DC Metro families trust Safe Start Baby. 888-240-7233 or Visit www.safestartbaby.com for more information.