Shawn Johnson East Wondered Whether Holiday Travel Was Safe With Her 4-Week-Old Baby
There’s a lot of thought and planning that goes into taking your baby out to run errands — let alone to go on a road trip. Shawn Johnson and Andrew East revealed in a new YouTube video that there were some serious questions and logistics involved when it came time to take their baby daughter Drew to visit family for Thanksgiving.
In the video, Shawn and Andrew explained that they needed to drive for four and a half hours to see Andrew’s family in Indianapolis for the holiday, and they struggled to figure out if they should even do it.
“It was a big ordeal deciding if we should even go to Indy,” Shawn said.
“The pediatrician has told us to make sure we try to almost quarantine her for at least six weeks,” Shawn continued. While baby Drew could be around immediate family (if they were healthy), there would be extended family at Thanksgiving dinner.
“I got really overwhelmed as a mom trying to decide if this was a safe enough and smart enough decision,” she said.
“We really, really wanted to but it was kind of our first decision of ‘is this the right thing for Drew?’” Andrew added.
So, the couple decided to only do Thanksgiving with immediate family, but not without caution — Shawn said she “could have been a walking ambassador for Germ-X.”
When it came to packing, “we had to be really strategic,” Shawn said. The couple packed 10 diapers per day and 100 wipes, and it still wasn’t enough.
“We ended up having to buy more,” Shawn said.
Figuring out when to leave was tricky, too.
“She has a schedule,” Shawn pointed out, noting that the couple was worried they would have a screaming baby in the car. Baby Drew usually goes to bed around 8 p.m., so they eventually decided to start the drive at that time — and it worked out.
"It was perfect. She was an angel," Shawn said, with Andrew detailing that “she slept there and back."
While the trip itself was relatively seamless, Shawn admitted that it was tough to try to get oriented in a different house.
“I felt like we were just starting to get the hang of our nursery and how our system works,” she said. “Going to a new house where there’s screaming kids and people wanting to hold her and our schedule getting off … and not having our stuff and our crib. It’s a lot,” she said. “At one point, I was sitting in my room, crying, like ‘I can’t do this. I just want to go home.’”
Ultimately, the Easts said they had a good time — but it was a lot to handle.
Tips for taking your baby on a road trip
Taking your baby on a road trip can be tricky, but it’s definitely possible to pull it off.
In general, it’s a good idea to hit the road when your baby is winding down, as the Easts did, and to have one adult sitting near your little one while the other is driving in case baby needs anything. Scheduling in lots of breaks is also crucial.
As for what to pack, you’ll want to have diapers for two days and nights easily accessible in case you get delayed, along with pacifiers, antibacterial wipes and a change of clothes for both baby and you.
If you’re flying, make sure you have entertainment (toys, books) for baby, and try to tether down things like binkies and toys that might move around inflight.