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To ask for survival tips for a holiday with toddlers?

(39 Posts)
Waitrosesaysimessential Fri 03-Jun-16 20:39:49

I am off on holiday with Dh and three small children under 5 tomorrow. I am dreading it. We are going to Spain which should be lovely. But after a very trying holiday last year I am wondering why we are bothering. We booked on a whim on a bleak winter evening. The kids slept very badly, continually had accidents around the pool and we were all tired and grumpy. I know I should be happy and grateful to be going but I really don't feel it.

I wish I were more chilled out but I can't change personality overnight, so please share your survival tips to cope!

readytorage Fri 03-Jun-16 20:44:13

No advice...just sympathy. flowers

RainbowSpiral Fri 03-Jun-16 20:45:27

Is there a kids club? Otherwise lots of suncream and floatation devices and throw them in the pool.

Starslubs Fri 03-Jun-16 20:56:00

You need an iPad

Believeitornot Fri 03-Jun-16 20:57:04

3 under 5 😱

Sorry. You'll just have to accept it is a holiday for the children not you.

redexpat Fri 03-Jun-16 20:57:28

And a travel blackout blind.

Writerwannabe83 Fri 03-Jun-16 21:00:01

Oh dear shock

Me and DH went away with DS when he was 14 months and it just wasn't fun at all. We were just dealing with the same toddler issues but just in a different location and one where we had spent money to be grin

DS is now 2yr 3m and me and DH have no desire at all to go abroad this year. Holidays with toddlers are not holidays in my opinion grin

0hCrepe Fri 03-Jun-16 21:07:46

Let them have an ice cream at first ask to get it out the way.
Dont bother paying for expensive day trips if they're happy just playing in play areas or in the sand.

woodwaj Fri 03-Jun-16 21:13:26

I just went away with one one year old and expected to be full of wise words for you. But you have three and I think you are the bravest woman alive. Just let them have what they want when they want! No bed times etc and you might make it!! wink I hope it's all inclusive!! Oh...and have fun!!x

Mari50 Fri 03-Jun-16 21:21:38

Lots of luck! I remember taking my DD on holiday to Spain to a villa with friends when she was 18 months, it was a nightmare. The villa was all shiny (slippy) tiles and sharp edges, the pool wasn't gated and she ate nothing. Was quite stressful at the time (but I'm a stressy worrying kind of person) but looking back I have nice memories haha.
Ideally have a tablet for each child who is old enough to enjoy, let them eat shit all week, don't stress about mealtimes (always a trigger point on our hols) and let them eat ice lollies and ice cream as much as they want! Plus sun cream sun cream sun cream, nothing like a sun burnt child to make you feel like a shit parent!!

OneMagnumisneverenough Fri 03-Jun-16 21:25:39

I think the first thing you need is the right attitude smile

Life with 3 under 5s is always going to be hard work, I didn't have 3 but I did have 2, 13 months apart.

I looked forward to holidays, not for a rest, but for a change of scenery and a chance to spend time together with new experiences to share.

Whilst it can be hard work, try to have one hour each where the other is in sole charge so you both get a little chill time to look forward to each day. Go somewhere else for this hour.

Otherwise make sure you know who is responsible for who at any one time - it saves arguments about who was looking after who.

Set out expectations of what you are going to do with any that are old enough to understand. i.e. we are going to the beach for a little while - you are going to sit with your bucket and spade and build a castle while mum and dad get organised and as soon as we've done that, dad will take you to the sea/mum will help finish the sandcastle. then we are having lunch and you can have an ice-cream after...etc.

Forget about bed times, let them stay up late and have a siesta.

Try to have fun!

polkadotdelight Fri 03-Jun-16 21:25:46

No, no, no, no! We are on the verge of booking a holiday with DS (he will be 2 then). What are we thinking?! Are there any good points?

FusionChefGeoff Fri 03-Jun-16 21:27:57

All normal rules out of the window. 'Yes' to everything - mantra "it doesn't really matter"

Just back from 2 weeks with 18mo and 3.6yo and we had a blast!! Lots of fresh air, only 1 day trip cos weather was bad, pool, pool, pool. They ate sausages, chips and spag Bol and more ice cream than I could ever have imagined but "it doesn't really matter"

Enforced down time after lunch - nap for youngest, iPad for big one, books and sun lounger for me & DH. We also took kids to park etc on our own to give the other an hour or two child free for napping / relaxing etc

OneMagnumisneverenough Fri 03-Jun-16 21:28:41

and to add, definitely don't get accidentally shit faced and still have to push a buggy home and lift it up two flights of concrete steps whilst full of sleeping toddler and the have the hangover from hell the next day so much so that you can even sip water.....definitely don't do that. wink grin

trilbydoll Fri 03-Jun-16 21:31:46

Walk along the front every morning and at least two might fall asleep?

I decided last time to aim for decent breakfast and tea but not worry too much about daytime snacks and lunch. Seemed to work okay.

We bought dd a rubber ring for the pool, she was thrilled with it. For novelty value I think it's worth buying cheap tat to keep them quiet!

Awks Fri 03-Jun-16 21:35:36

Take lots of English calpol. Spanish isn't the same apparently. We had to phone our friends who were flying out later and then drive across Majorca to pick it up after our toddler got a bug and refused to take Spanish calpol so became ill. Oh that was a great holiday sad

Though the others were fine, hard work but fine. Hope you manage to have some fun and least the weather will be nice.

Ragwort Fri 03-Jun-16 21:38:41

Kid's club?

Write clearly in your diary 'do not book a family holiday again for X years' grin.

I sympathise with you, I find going on holiday with one child more than enough.

FusionChefGeoff Fri 03-Jun-16 21:39:06

All normal rules out of the window. 'Yes' to everything - mantra "it doesn't really matter"

Just back from 2 weeks with 18mo and 3.6yo and we had a blast!! Lots of fresh air, only 1 day trip cos weather was bad, pool, pool, pool. They ate sausages, chips and spag Bol and more ice cream than I could ever have imagined but "it doesn't really matter"

Enforced down time after lunch - nap for youngest, iPad for big one, books and sun lounger for me & DH. We also took kids to park etc on our own to give the other an hour or two child free for napping / relaxing etc

signalred Fri 03-Jun-16 21:48:41

Party poopers. I've just come back from our family holiday and we loved it. We have 2 under 5. Up early, brekky pool, dinner, back to room were all 4 of us slept for 2 hours, pool. Bath, tea, kids entertainment whilst mum and dad enjoyed vino and watched them run around. Amazing happy family times X

LoadsaBlusher Fri 03-Jun-16 22:18:00

We take a cheap DVD player ( got it for under £20 in asda) , it's small , about the size of a cereal box, so fits in case fine.
Take a scart cable and a selection of kids DVDs tucked into pocket in suitcase and it means we have " wind down " time for bedtime . Few Disney films , CBeebies etc .
The TVs in hotel rooms abroad never have any decent kids programs .
It really helps just for that little bedtime hour.

green18 Fri 03-Jun-16 22:35:53

Same shit , different place. But hopefully in the sun smile You will forget the pain and remember all the happy bits, they group up all too quick. Remember to stop and take it all in, the chubby little sandy feet, freckly noses and suncream flavoured kisses. I miss those days.....

green18 Fri 03-Jun-16 22:36:25

grow up not group up.

FrancisdeSales Fri 03-Jun-16 22:40:36

When we had 3 five and under in the afternoon I would go back to the room and nap with the baby and DH would look after the other two at the beach or take them sonewhere. Try and wear them out, lots of swimming and running around!

DoublyTroubly Fri 03-Jun-16 22:41:01

Seriously, ignore all the posters above. You will have a great time if you just go with the flow

We went away with 3 under 4 last September (1 X 3 year old and 2 X 11 month olds) and we've booked to go away again in a few weeks (now a just turned 4 year old and 2 X 20 month olds)

What ages are your kids and what sort of resort are you staying in? We ended up going in the pool every day last year, just make sure everyone has appropriate floatation devices to be independent in the water. Also helps to tire them out ready for bed

Why do you think they had trouble sleeping last year? What sort of accidents did they have around the pool? I'm sure they are issues that can be avoided with a bit of prep work

Overall, don't worry about trying to keep to normal bed times. Let them stay up late and get tired out so they fall asleep quickly and easily

Have a great time x

captainfarrell Fri 03-Jun-16 22:53:14

We took our 2 yr old to Spain. Just the one i know. She was in the pool lots and got her walking as much as possible. After lunch ,which was later, about 3pm, she would sleep till about 5. We'd feed her something in the apartment and then go out in the evening till about 10. She'd have a pudding when we had our meal. She'd then sleep all night, no problem.

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