Honestly, the plane travel went quite well! But I was well prepared for it so I thought I would share what was helpful for us.
Hobo bag- you need a large bag to carry all your "tricks". I chose this Large one after much thought and research. It's a splurge, not going to lie. But I rationalized it by telling myself that I can spend a bit more for a bag (I plan on using this on a daily basis) since I use the same purse/bag for 2-3 years. I am way too lazy to change out my purses/bags more often. For me, it was worth the money for a quality piece. The great thing about this one is the different options for carrying it. There is a small strap, longer strap and it can also be worn like a back pack (which I found most helpful when trudging through the airport carrying a one year old, wearing my camera bag across my body and pulling my carry on luggage with a very large car seat teetering over the top of it).
2. Doug and Melissa Water WOW! books. Both my kids used this and it kept them busy for quite awhile. And since the pages can be used over and over again, I used it every time we went out for dinner to keep them from getting too bored. These are really great and a good value since they can be used over and over again. You just fill the wand with tap water.
3. iPad. Enough said. This was for the 4 year old, and the hubs.
4. Crayola No Mess Imagine Ink- this is great because the marker only shows up on the pages. Not on tray tables, clothes or skin. The 4 year old liked to color and the 1 year old just thought it was great to take the cap on and off the marker (by herself, of course). And there are about 15 pages and some the pages have games. I got a Mickey Mouse one at CVS before we left. Again, the kids used them on the plane and when we went to dinner so the Mickey one was spent by the time we had to fly home. I picked up a Frozen one at the airport for the ride home. FYI- these are about $2 more expensive at the airport.
5. Elastic hair ties- this needed for 2 reasons: get your hair out of your face and out of the hands of sticky, grabby hands and for entertainment for 1 year olds. My daughter spent, I kid you not, 25 minutes on one of the flights putting this on and off my fingers. Cheap entertainment!! Just make sure your kid doesn't put this in their mouth!
6. Gerber Graduates Yogurt Melts- we also had the Puffs on hand. This was mostly for the 1 year old but the 4 year old likes them too.
Surprisingly, the kids were not at all bothered by the ear pressure changes. I was shocked! So it was all about keeping them entertained. Obviously, after one vacation I am no expert in plane travel with kids, but this seemed to work well for us this time. Kept these two little nuggets busy enough!
I will share more about the vacation in my next post!