My husband and I recently had the opportunity to take a quick trip down to Mexico without the kids. It was blissful. My mom and my in-laws teamed up to conquer our crew and make sure everything ran smoothly in our absence. My kids are five, eight and ten, so leaving them in someone else's care is WAY easier than it was just a few years ago. But, as I packed them up, I remembered all of the tips and tricks I used when they were tots, and I am going to share them with you here.
TIP ONE: Create a simple picture calendar (see photo). Show your child exactly when you will leave, and when you will return. Even very small children can benefit from the comfort of knowing "what will happen next". A calendar of your whereabouts gives them that peace of mind.
TIP TWO: Leave a note to your child for each day that you are gone. I like to seal them each in individual envelopes to make it more fun. The note doesn't need to to be extravagant. Just a line or two telling them that you love them and that you are thinking of them. You can ask your caregiver to read them a new note at bedtime each night.
TIP THREE: Make a date to FaceTime or Skype (Put it on the calendar). This is especially helpful if you are going to be in a different time zone. Keep your phone call short, just a few minutes is ideal. Just enough to see your littles and let them see you. Exchange a few, "I love you's," and one or two exciting things. You know you child best, so if you think that they can't handle seeing you, skip this tip! If you think you will have the time, pack a quick bedtime story in your suitcase. You can read them their favorite book over FaceTime!
Traveling away from your children can be anxiety producing, and not without hiccups. But if you have the opportuity, get out of your comfort zone, and do it!! You will not regret it.