Packing Tips for a Family Beach Vacation (With a toddler)

The task of packing for our trip to Punta Cana with a 1 year old was seemingly more overwhelming than packing had been in the past sans kids. Not only was it hard to picture everything that we could possibly need but also the added problem of how-in-the-world would we fit it into two suitcases.

We upgraded our flight package to allow for more checked baggage weight which was helpful and as it turned out, completely necessary. I started packing about two+ weeks in advance as I pulled all of our Spring/Summer clothes out of storage and washed it all. Sullivan only had a few pieces from last summer that he still fit which meant only one thing… shopping! 😀

We ordered him a heap of summer clothes from H&M, Carters, Hudsons’ Bay and Baby Gap as well as both Grandma’s found several items for him. We traveled with water shoes which turned out to be amazing for Sullivan in helping him keep sure-footed en-route to the pool/beach as well as on pool tile and in the sand.

Sullivan’s Navigator Babiators are from West Coast Kids and his swim set is from H&M Kids (sold out now)

We purchased our matching family swimsuits from Patpat. I was totally unsure of the quality based on the price when I ordered but was pleasantly surprised! Other than a strong smell when they arrived (which washed out perfectly), I couldn’t have been happier with how they turned out! Also, you can’t beat the price. I ordered mine in my regular size (Small) Travis’ in his regular size (Large) and for Sullivan, the smallest size they carried was a 2 Years so I ordered that for him and it fit great.

We packed a small first aid bag with a baby thermometer, Baby Tempera, band aids, and other assorted medicines that we thought we might need. We were thankful we did when Sullivan had a low grade fever the first morning after arriving.

We brought a full sleeve of diapers as well as about 20 swim diapers. We came home with several of each left but didn’t feel we overpacked.

Food was tough, not knowing how Sullivan would react to their food (and especially their milk) so we brought heaps. We packed 8 yogurt drinks, several small greek yogurt, 15 pouches, puffs, cheerios, crackers, animal crackers, Gerber baby cookies and Baby Mum mums. He ate pretty much everything we brought. We also packed four bottles for the plane rides. FOUR. 2 of milk and two of juice and water to help those little ears pop. We also brought Earplanes to help with this as well and although I have nothing else to compare it to, while all other babies on the plane were crying, Sully was all smiles. *We bought a pack of three which I would highly recommend as they are *very* easy to lose.

I love my Mossio packing cubes, I find that you can fit SO much more in your suitcase and it helps me stay organized while traveling. Normally, I use the merlot coloured cubes for me, navy for Travis and grey for Sullivan however this trip I used most of them in a different way. Once all of our clothes were washed and folded I laid them all out on the bed and started choosing coordinating outfits; one for Travis, one for Sullivan and one for myself (including accessories) and would put it all into one cube. I did this for most days as well as separate one cubes that included our dinner outfits. I love wearing coordinating outfits as a family so found this to be the most efficient way rather than sorting through our clothes each day and night tying to pick outfits. This way, I simply chose a cube based on whether we were doing a dress-up or dress-down day/dinner and everything was already chosen for me. Ahhhh, simplicity. (aka extreme organization) The ones we use are linked below.

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