minimizing the meltdown

Minimizing the Meltdown: Tips for Trips with Kids Under 5

I love fall just as much as the next girl. Pumpkin spice lattes, fall festivals, fairs and all the other excitement that fall has to offer. Becoming a parent means a lifestyle change. The days of spending all day or evening at event become quite challenging with kids, especially toddlers under the age of five. Have you ever planned the perfect outing for your kids, only to be disappointed by tears and tantrums? Here’s what I’ve found works for minimizing the meltdowns:

minimizing the meltdown

  • Take your children first thing in the morning when they wake up, or right after a nap. Most toddlers have meltdowns because they are either tired or overstimulated. Timing is everything!
  • Pack extra snacks. I love fair and festival food as much as the next girl. However, I have a very picky four year old. She loves dairy products and doesn’t drink much except milk or water. Knowing that, I keep her favorite drinks on hand if we are going to be out for several hours. For me, this helps to minimize her meltdowns.
  • If possible, bring reinforcements. By reinforcements, I mean Grandma, friends, or family. Any extra hands on deck are always a big help with little ones.

grandma to the rescue

  • Bring your camera (or keep your phone charged). You won’t want to miss their grins in the pumpkin patch, powdered sugar all over their faces, and anything else that might occur.

bring grandma

  • Use the stroller as extra storage. When you have little kids, you feel like you are bringing everything but the kitchen sink on an outing. Your arms get full and you are constantly digging for something in a bag. The stroller works to keep the kids contained as well as storage for all the kiddie gear! I have a four year old and almost two year old, and I love our Joovy stroller.

joovy double stroller

  • Ignore the stares. People will stare, grumble and glare. Anyone who has ever raised kids, knows that toddlers can be unpredictable. Once Melody and I were shopping in Belk. She had just woken from a nap and was being fussy in her stroller. A woman walked over and said to her, aw, what’s wrong little girl? Are you sleepy? Does your mom need to take you home for a nap? I tried not to glare at her, but kindly informed her that she had just woken from a nap.
  • Know your child’s over stimulation threshold. Sometimes as adults, we forget that all that excitement can be overwhelming for them, especially if we are deviating from their normal schedule. We had to leave a Halloween event because Melody pitched a royal fit (when I say royal, I mean royal). Nothing was going her way, and Daphne was half asleep anyway, so we just came home and put everyone to bed. We decided it was better to give them what they needed, rather than push the issue just because it was Halloween.

What was the last outing you had with your toddler? What did you do to minimize the meltdown?

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6 thoughts on “Minimizing the Meltdown: Tips for Trips with Kids Under 5

  1. Bess Walthour says:

    Excellent advice. One is never too old to learn, especially being a grandmom who helps to care for her only grandchild. I thank you for these tips. My grandson is only nine months, but it has been awhile for me to be a caretaker of a little one. I love this little guy with all my heart, but it does seem overwhelming sometimes. Thanks for the tips. Love your blog!

    Bess

    Like

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