Finding Spontaneity with a Newborn

Can you still find spontaneity with a newborn?  It’s a real question.  When you are a few weeks into motherhood it’s hard to remember the last time you showered let alone the last time you went out to get ice cream on a whim.

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You CAN find Spontaneity.

It is possible to be spontaneous with a newborn baby.  You can find adventure… and I don’t just mean the adventure of raising a newborn (because believe me that is filled with spontaneity).  Just ask my husband about the two BILLION times my daughter has peed during the diaper change soaking the changing pad and her clothes.  I mean that’s spontaneous and an adventure right!?

No, here I’m talking about getting out of the house.  Wanderlust.  GO SOMEWHERE.

This type of spontaneity looks different for everyone… Maybe you need to take a walk around the neighborhood.  Grab your hubby and go out for some ice cream.  Or maybe sitting down at a nice restaurant may be adventurous enough for you when lugging around an eight week old.

Dallas and I were ambitious.  We decided to drive 5+ hours to the beach!  I mean we had already taken a day trip with her at a month old, so why not a very last minute beach vacation at two months?

Almost 12 hours before we left on our road trip we were both sitting in Gemma’s nursery.  We had received two pieces of bad news and both of us were pretty bummed out.  We had the following conversation:

“I just want to go and do something adventurous…  Lets go to the Grand Canyon!” I was spurred on by a recent Parks and Rec episode we had just watched.  Andy and April were crossing items off a bucket list and drove out to see the Grand Canyon.

Dallas’s eyes widen, “Okay!  How long is the drive?”

“Let me check…” I open up Google Map just for my heart to sink. “15 hours.”

We both turn to look at our 2 month old daughter snoozing peacefully.

“Maybe we could go to the beach instead?” Dallas suggests.


What will you need?

One key to help you get in and out of the house faster is to ALWAYS have a readied diaper bag. I will be posting a Diaper Bag post soon!  But you’ll want a bag that is almost if not fully packed so you can grab and go at a moments notice.  If you pump (You can read a little about my breastfeeding experience here) I would keep a pumping bag ready as well.  I LOVED my bag because I could keep it ready and waiting to take anywhere… Even to another room if I wanted to switch up where I was pumping.

I also think there are two to four BIG items you’ll need to really make traveling and going a whole lot easier.  First, you need a great stroller and/or carrier.  I use both almost daily but you can get by with one or the other.  The stroller is able to hold her carseat and will transition with her as she gets older.  The two carriers that I use are the boba wrap which was PERFECT for the first month and the 4-in-1 Infantino which is sturdier and more father-friendly in our opinion.

The other two items are either a quilt (we have two great handmade quilts) or some kind of activity mat.  We use the fisher price activity mat.   The reason those are essentials for us is because if you have a baby like our Gemma, she’ll want to get out of her cramped carseat and lounge.  The quilt is great because we can lay her down almost anywhere and the activity mat can keep her occupied for about thirty minutes (when she starts getting bored I just flip her over to enjoy some tummy time).

You Must Be Flexible.

Once you are actually out being spontaneous my biggest piece of advice is to stay flexible.  On our trip to Galveston we had to travel slower and sometimes had to put things on hold to feed her or to let her rest.  There were a lot of restaurants that we ate in while simultaneously passing Gemma girl back and forth to feed her and eat at the same time.  If you try and jam pack your schedule with a ton of things to do just be prepared to switch things around or skip some things because of your little one.  I’m usually a planner.  I like to have a detailed itinerary.  Having an adventurous husband and now a newborn has really taught me a lot about learning to go with the flow.

Learn to read your baby’s cues.  Gemma is currently an easy going girl. As long as we feed her on time and let her stretch out and play she’s a happy traveler.  One morning we got caught in a DOWNPOUR.  We had to walk maybe a quarter mile back to our hotel.  Dallas and I were completely drenched but when we lifted the cover of the stroller to check on Gem she was just smiling at us totally dry and care free.

We didn’t get to do as much as we would have if it were just me and Dallas.  But getting out of town and enjoying things with our baby girl was totally worth it in our book!


Just Do It.

Seriously.  That’s really my biggest piece of advice.  These baby days are going to fly by (so I hear) and I feel like traveling with a newborn has to be easier than traveling with a toddler.  Also, if this is your first baby like it is ours… then traveling with one baby has to be easier than traveling with two.

So go and get some ice cream or try out that new restaurant.  Maybe take a day trip to a neighboring town or spend the weekend somewhere with you, your spouse and baby.  Just remember to stay relaxed, flexible and have a ton of fun!


Do you have any great travel/adventure-with-a-newborn stories or tips?
Leave them in the comments!!

-Brittany Smith-

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