Baby Travel Made Easy

I love the customers I meet at One Tiny Suitcase.

Parents that are travelling with young children are often really nervous about their first trip and we do our best to reassure them that renting their gear will make their trip a little bit easier.

Here is a comment from Victoria who travelled to Calgary with her two children to celebrate her father’s 70th birthday this month:

Hi Stacey,

It worked out beautifully. The car seats were perfect, the booster high chair was exactly what we needed. Everything was sparkling clean and easy to maintain for the week.
You were AMAZING – thank you so much for installing the car seats and for picking everything up again. I was thrilled with your quality service and the excellent condition of the items.

I will definitely recommend you to anyone I know traveling in Calgary.

Victoria

Thinking about renting some Baby Equipment for your next trip to Calgary, Edmonton or Banff? Contact us at www.OneTinySuitcase.ca

Convertible Backpack Stroller

I’m always happy to see other families that are out there travelling when their kids are young.

I saw a very cute little lady riding through the Hilton Waimea (Big Island, Hawaii) with her mom in this sweet ride:

Kelty's convertible stroller/backpack

This innovative product combines a backpack and stroller all in one. http://www.amazon.com/Kelty-20080001-Convertible-Child-Carrier/dp/B001M0NVHQ A great way to get around the grounds of the hotel or do some sightseeing.

For more innovative travel products have a look at our website www.OneTinySuitcase.ca

Flying and Food

I recently flew with my 2 Five Year Olds under the new Security Restrictions for carry-on baggage. I was a little nervous about flying without our usual carry-on bags filled with lots of snacks and entertainment devices.

Our flights took us from Calgary to San Fransisco and then on to Kona, Hawaii.

I should have known when our flight was hours late leaving Calgary that things were not going to go according to plan. The kids had eaten a good breakfast but it wasn’t really time for lunch. I assumed we get something for them in San Fransisco before boarding the second leg of our trip. I’d packed a few snacks to keep them busy but nothing too elaborate.

When we were told to get off our United Airlines flight in San Fransisco and literally sprint to the next gate to catch our connection I knew we were in trouble.

Two hungry 5 year olds and a mom who has run out of snacks in her small carry-on bag. I was a bit panicked that the inflight meal service (snacks for purchase) would not come in time. Within about an hour and a half into the flight, the cart finally made it to my aisle. We were all starving.

Trying to make a meal out of an onboard menu designed for adults isn’t easy. The kids ended up eating chips and cookies for dinner. Thank goodness that seemed to tide them over.

Moral of my story: when travelling with kids food is #1 priority. When they are fed they are happy. All the Dvd’s and IPOD’s don’t compare to a belly full of good healthy food.

Top 5 Preschooler Must Haves for a Flight

I’m about to embark on a post-holiday warm weather vacation with my two 5 year olds. I am meeting my husband and parents in Hawaii (thank goodness) but need to fly solo with my kids to get there.

I’ve been travelling with my twins since they were only a few months old but the type of gear we need changes every time we fly. For this trip I need to think ‘entertainment’.

They can easily walk through the airport (no need for my beloved GoGoKidz travelmates anymore), no car seats on board, no strollers for sight-seeing, no pack n plays to sleep in, etc.

Here are the Top 5 things you’ll find in my carry-on for this trip:

1. Nintendo DS- two of them: one pink and one blue! I love that the games for these are so small, makes it easy to pack.

2. IPOD- two of them: loaded with children’s music, podcasts from Nickleodeon and some music for Mom!

3. Usborne books 50 Things to Do on a Plane Things to do on a Plane

4. Portable DVD player: just in case the inflight television system goes down or the kids want to watch a movie.

5. Blackberry Smart Phone: my phone has gotten me out of a few sticky situations. Stuck in a line up, waiting to board the flight my kids know exactly where the games are on my phone!

Baby’s First Visit

An article I wrote was recently published regarding Baby’s First Visit to Grandma and Grandpa’s house. Here’s a link to the article in its entirety (page 20).

With some help from a local Baby Proofing company and Rhonda Tkachuk of Certified First Aid in Calgary, the article describes some of the preparations grandparents can make before the arrival of little visitors. Here’s an excerpt of the article:

“some of the hot spots she sees in Grandparent’s homes are bed side tables that have medications in them. An easily accessible bed side table with dangerous medications will need to be relocated. Also, have a look in your closet for any dry-cleaning bags that can pose a suffocation hazard. Any small objects that can become a choking hazard should also be moved (marbles, decorative beads, coins, etc.)”

With a little preparation your first visit to Grandma and Grandpa’s home can be successful. Don’t wait until you arrive to talk to them about sleeping arrangements, relocating dangerous pieces of furniture, plans for pet/baby interactions. Most grandparents today understand that things have changed and parents are much more aware of the safety precautions necessary to keep their baby safe in a new environment.

Infant Car Seat Rentals

It’s December, and that means it is our busiest month of the year for Car Seat Rentals. My favorite orders to take are from grandparents that have been asked by their son/daughter to source out the exact Car Seat Rental they want. Just the other day I had a Grandma call to ask for a Peg Perego Primo Viaggio SIP infant car seat rental (she didn’t know what all those names meant but wanted to ensure she got the safest seat possible). Her daughter was bringing her new baby to Calgary and she wanted to rent the exact same car seat she used at home.

Good planning- we’re delivering it to Grandma’s house tomorrow!

Pregnancy Pillows on Your Baby Moon

Twitter is amazing. I can connect with so many cool people in the travel industry and in most cases we’ve never met. Such is the case with my ‘Sleep Guru’. I met my Guru one day on  Twitter when she was tweeting about ways to get better quality sleep. What a great topic!

I went on to find out that this Guru is the Sleep Concierge for the Benjamin Hotel in New York City. She alwSleep Conciergeays has great tips and tricks for getting ‘more’ out of your 8 hours but when I heard about the pillow menu I had to know more.

12 choices! 12 different kinds of pillows that you can have delivered to your room at the Benjamin.

The Pregnancy pillow and the Satin Beauty caught my eye. So many pregnant mama’s that take the last trip (Baby Moon) before baby arrives have trouble sleeping. Imagine, custom fitting your hotel bed to maximize your comfort during your stay. Sounds sooooooo good.

New York is on my list of places to go this year and now the Benjamin Hotel is too!

Westjet Fall Fair Pictures

The Westjet Fall Fair was wonderful this year.  I met a lot of great Westjetters and their families and got to ‘experience’ the new building (wow).

Here is a picture from the One Tiny Suitcase booth at the Fair:

Westjet airlines fair displaying Baby Equipment Rentals

Thanks to Westjet for including us in this year’s event and we look forward to serving many of your staff and guests in the future!

Baby Travel During H1N1

We have a few friends getting ready to embark on family holidays. With the H1N1 being in the news every time you turn it on, it is hard not to think about how that will or will not affect your family vacation.

Baby Travel H1N1

Back in May 2009 when the Swine Flu was all everyone was talking about, my family was getting ready for our first trip to Disneyland. This was during the time when people were on planes coming out of Mexico with masks on, quarantines, etc.

My parents (the kid’s Granny and Grandpa) were nervous about us flying from Calgary to California under these circumstances. I felt confident that an organization like Disney would have measures in place to deal with such an outbreak. Just in case, we talked to the kids before we left about the fact that they might see some people in the airport wearing masks and what that was all about.  

In the end, our flight was pretty uneventful. We two people at LAX wearing masks and the kids didn’t really seem to bothered by it.

When we arrived at the Disneyland Park I was sure we would see some upgraded measures. Wrong. There were no signs up, no hand sanitizing stations, nobody wearing masks, etc. I was surprised, but reassured for some reason. Disneyland felt so safe and secure that I didn’t really think about the Swine Flu at all while we were there. That may have been a false sense of security, but we had a wonderful time and none of us fell ill.

One of my friends was insistent on getting the H1N1 vaccine for her boys before they left for Hawaii. My other friend has decided not to vaccinate her 5-year-old and is headed down to California next week. Hopefully, they all enjoy a safe and fabulous family vacation!

Some Sweetpea for your little Sweetpea

Many of our customers at One Tiny Suitcase Baby Equipment Rentals come to the area for a vacation or to visit family. Vacation rentals, Grandma’s house or a suite at a luxe downtown hotel  often include a kitchen. When you know you are going to be staying somewhere that has a kitchen you can plan for better food options that dining at local restaurants 7 days a week.

When we travelled when the babies were really young, it was important that we were able to find the same brands of food we used at home. I also liked being able to feed them in our hotel or at Granny’s house. Feeding time was a bit messy and a little stressful (the twins were always hungry at the same time!)Sweetpea

Many of my customers are requesting organic baby food with their Baby Equipment Rental orders. They are staying with friends or family and want to be able to feed their baby the same food she eats at home. Our most popular product has to be Sweetpea Baby Food. Organic, tasty, and frozen in little ice cube-shaped serving sizes. Yum. The food looks good enough for adults to eat.

If you are travelling to Calgary, Banff or Edmonton- make sure to add some Sweetpea Baby Food to your order. We’ll deliver to your accommodations and stock your freezer full.

Sweet Dreams

When my twins arrived it was a bit of a shock to my system. I used to nap for a couple of hours a day when I was pregnant! The disruption to my sleep was probably one of the biggest adjustments I had to make. I had trouble getting the kids to sleep through the night.

The first time the kids actually slept all the way through the night it was while we were on vacation at my parent’s cottage. I’m not sure if it was the fresh air or the peace and quiet but my husband and I were amazed!

Travel and baby’s good sleep habits don’t always go hand in hand. Lately, I’ve been getting calls from friends and customers about how to deal with the sleep disruption that is caused during holidays.

baby cribs

One of my friends called me frantically the other day asking if I knew of any devices to keep her son in his crib. They had just returned from holidays where she had slept in the same bed with her little guy. Once home, he couldn’t understand why mom’s bed wasn’t an option anymore and kept climbing out of his crib to sleep with her.  Trying to re-establish his sleep routine was driving her crazy.

A customer also called this week asking if we carried a mesh dome that would go over top of her pack n play to try and contain her son while on vacation in Calgary. She was desperate to find a way to keep him in his bed while they were sleeping away from home. Our Eddie Bauer pack n plays do include a mesh dome cover but are meant more for keeping bugs/sun off of your child if used outside.  

From my experience, trying to duplicate the sleeping environment your child has at home is the best way for everyone to get the rest they need. If she sleeps in a full size crib at home, you will want to make arrangements for that when you travel.

Not all kids will automatically sleep in a pack n play just because you are away from home. The mattress is significantly thinner, it is lower to the ground and a small sleeping surface.

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