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Long Journey Home

(40 Posts)
weefreeladies Fri 22-Jul-16 21:24:27

Has anyone had a long journey home with LO at the end of introductions? In the region of 300 miles?

Does anyone have any opinions on what it would be like to undertake such a journey by car, or train? TIA.

tldr Fri 22-Jul-16 22:59:23

How old is LO?

I'd avoid public transport because there's every chance LO will be very distressed.

We did a few-hours-long car journey with ours. Didn't stop for breaks beyond literal side of road wees (LO, not us!), had to reach into back of car to hold hands the entire trip.

Our only journey-oriented goal was to get home ASAP.

Italiangreyhound Fri 22-Jul-16 23:11:38

If you can sit in the back with them, do. If you can have the usual things in the car, a few books (if you can read and be a passenger), water, food they will know (ask what they like and make sure it is as familiar as possible).

It really depends on their age, a very young child will most likely sleep.

If you can take or buy the duvet, do, and have it in the car so they can use it to put their head on etc. Make sure they don't overheat, of course.

I'd see if the foster carer would play a CD of lullabies to them for a week or two before inductions, if there is time and play them in the car.

We didn't have a long journey home but we often do a journey of about three hours.

Italiangreyhound Fri 22-Jul-16 23:12:53

I mean the duvet from their foster carer, or blanket or whatever.

weefreeladies Sat 23-Jul-16 08:18:54

I can't sit in the back, I'm driving!

I also know I can't drive the 300 odd miles in one go, I will need at least one significant break, but probably multiple.

The journey is on one of the highest traffic days of the year, past multiple well known black spots. In potentially hot weather.

LO is somewhere between 1 and 2 years old, and is used to much shorter trips in the car.

tldr Sat 23-Jul-16 09:40:29

Is there any scope to move it forward or back one day? I don't know where you are at with the planning stages but our intro plan changed day to day whilst they were happening.

Try and schedule trip for whenever LO would normally nap.

If you're alone, you're also going to need to work out what to do with LO whilst you use loos at services (which probably means not having them in pram).

Might be worth giving CD of nursery rhymes to FCs now so it can be a firm favourite already in the car if LO doesn't nap.

Get bungee cords or clips for toys. Toddlers in cars are nightmares for dropping favourite snuggly and really not understanding why you can't stop driving to pick it up.

Good luck!

weefreeladies Sat 23-Jul-16 09:58:10

No, no scope for moving it, due to logistics. FC are not allowed to use anything from me just now. (Ratification is the day we start intros, and not allowed to have anything from me before ratification, even if anonymous.)

I'm well used to juggling toilets and LOs, it's the actual driving that worries me. I don't drive long journeys, without kids. Let alone with kids. 3hrs is about my limit, and even then I need a stop halfway through, or I feel my driving worsen.

gabsdot Sat 23-Jul-16 14:26:36

We flew from far eastern Russia with our DD. 9hr flight to Moscow, 2.5hrs to Amsterdam and another 2hrs to Dublin.
I'd recommend that you get someone else to drive you do you can sit beside the child in the back.

Haffdonga Sat 23-Jul-16 16:49:00

Could you do the drive at evening/night setting off at LO's bedtime in their pajamas? (so avoid the worst of the traffic and heat and hopefully LO will sleep throughout).

MintyLizzy9 Sat 23-Jul-16 19:21:34

My LO was 23 months at intros and was only used to very short car journeys. Our first longer (just over an hour) car ride was a few weeks after he came home and he struggled.

If you can set off within 30 min of nap time there is a good chance LO will sleep. My son likes audio CDs now and will happily play on phone or iPad for 30/45 min in car.

Can you do anything physical with them that morning before you set off? Swimming or soft play then a hearty snack, bottle or sippy cup of milk, that would knock my DS right out!

pleasemothermay1 Sat 23-Jul-16 21:51:45

If you can fly even half the jounery do it we have just co,e back from irland 9 hours in the car it was fucking hell if not get someone else to drive oh and charge up the I pad we got about two hours out of it

weefreeladies Sat 23-Jul-16 23:11:46

There is an airport under an hour away from each location, and direct flights between the two.

The later we left, the worse the traffic. It's a day where traffic goes from terrible to diabolical throughout the day. (The baseline is awful for some parts of the route!)

I'm not sure any LO would sleep the 6 to 7 hours plus it will take. Not and sleep that night. Me night driving at the end of intros does not sound sensible.

They say I have to drive. It's looking like I will have to drive. We'll have songs in the car.

weefreeladies Sat 23-Jul-16 23:14:53

Wow to the Russian trip!

I can't get anyone to drive me back. My support network is great, but no sane person would ever agree to this journey. The only person I have who could be willing to ever drive that route on this day, smokes continuously, speeds, and is generally not going to be the easiest person for me to have transporting us!

RatherBeIndoors Sun 24-Jul-16 18:18:32

Is there anyone who could get a train to meet you halfway, to either keep you company on the last leg, or drive it so you can attend to LO?

If foster carers can't use anything of yours yet, can they tell you what nursery rhymes/music LO listens to now, so you can buy a duplicate copy of that?

Once intros start, you may find there's more opportunity to talk about flexibility - based around avoiding stress for the child as far as practically possible. Fingers crossed!

gabsdot Sun 24-Jul-16 22:17:36

You could set off at bedtime and hope baby sleeps for most of the journey

weefreeladies Mon 25-Jul-16 07:40:06

Night driving not possible. There's often night road closures, and I would fall asleep. There is also another reason, but, no, I can't drive this distance after bedtime.

Buzzybee51 Mon 25-Jul-16 13:23:41

I have no real tips at all but ours was 300 miles too. It was dreadful; LO was so scared and worried, just broke down in tears (and me in the front trying to hide my tears!). He was too worried at that stage for a sing song/too hypervigilant to sleep any of the journey too (he was older though).

In hindsight more distractions / games etc would have been a better solution being such a long journey, but quite tricky as you're driving. Lots of stops can help too. I hope it goes well.

MyDogEatsBalloons Mon 25-Jul-16 15:41:41

We had 250 miles to drive home, and it was fine - even with a very scary time on the motorway where we had a tyre blow out, and were rescued by the AA! Saying that; our DC was five, so probably easier than a younger one. Could your SW help out with the driving? Ours was around for the first couple of intro days, but I don't see why they (or child's) SW couldn't play a part in helping out somehow.

MypocketsarelikeNarnia Mon 25-Jul-16 16:15:16

Is it even advisable to have an under two in a carseat that long? I would honestly get the train if that is an option. Sounds barmy that they are trying to impose the drive on you under the circumstances you describe or it would do if I hadn't dealt with Ss myself

MypocketsarelikeNarnia Mon 25-Jul-16 16:18:51

I get that most of the advice is about very little babies but it also says young children...

Redorwhitejusthaveboth Mon 25-Jul-16 16:28:20

Book into Slovak B&b or premier inn type place ... Relaxing evening - do something fun... Set off after breakfast the next day

Redorwhitejusthaveboth Mon 25-Jul-16 16:28:42

Slovak??????? I meant local!

weefreeladies Mon 25-Jul-16 18:21:11

Why would a local b&b help? I suppose it would avoid that particular bad day. SS insist I drive. I think it's partly a control thing. Finding it all much harder than it needs to be. There is a direct train. But the trains will also be busy, and I have LO's stuff to transport.

It's a journey LO's SW is refusing to do by car again, SW is flying from now on. But she says I have to drive LO.

A stop half way may be a good plan. Then, if things are going well, I can plough on, but if it's a nightmare, I know it's just a couple of hours.

weefreeladies Mon 25-Jul-16 18:26:07

No, I don't think a child of this age is safe in a car seat for that long. But FC and SW differ with me on car seat safety, anyway. (I'm an ERF advocate, LO is FF, despite being under the limit for a infant carrier still, let alone an ERF.)

Italiangreyhound Mon 25-Jul-16 22:02:28

Can you stop at a hotel half way?

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