Make the most of the end of winter with your Kiddy
To the delight of young and old alike, March is just around the corner and it’s my favorite time of the year! The days are getting longer, the temperature is getting warmer, and it is time to take full advantage of his last winter weeks with our children. Not always easy in winter some new parents will say, but it is by taming it as a family, sted by step, especially at this time of the year, that you will discover the pleasures of this magnificent season with a new -born. Here are some tips to help you get the most out of the last winter snowflakes …
The biggest challenges in winter are certainly not snow but rather the principles of heat loss due to the wind, direct contact with the ground, perspiration and evaporation. The wind can drastically transform a simple ride into an extreme expedition, especially if your child has an urgent need in the middle of your trip! To tame what is left of winter, it is advisable to start with short trip around 15-20 minutes and try to avoid the above-mentioned elements which are at the source of heat loss. You will learn how to slowly integrate trips into a daily routine (e.g. a small trip from 4:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. before supper) and to become aware of the well-being that fresh white snow can bring to the whole family.
Cold weather can dehydrate almost as much as heat in summer. A well-hydrated baby will have better blood circulation and therefore better resistance to cold. Proper hydration will also limit drying of baby’s skin and limit the risk of frostbites. To increase the protection of fragile baby skin, it is recommended to apply a moisturizer or protective baby balm. We apply this balm in the same way as we put an additional layer of clothing on his child, thus offering him better resistance to cold. Beware of allergies when choosing your products.
Before leaving, avoid all sources of humidity by changing your baby’s diaper and dressing him or her at the last minute so that it does not accumulate body moisture before you step out the door. Also avoid large differences in temperature when traveling by car, which cause excessive sweating. Because there is no bad temperature, but only bad clothes, apply the principles of the multilayer system, while adding a few more layers than yourself. While it is not always easy to avoid cotton in the winter, try to favor synthetic clothing and wool. A simple fleece pyjamas is a good choice to prevent your mini from getting cold quickly due to its own body humidity. Remember that in addition to standing still, children under two have a small immature thermostat and they do not have the same ability as adults to regulate their body temperature. It is therefore essential to cover their head and extremities well.
Travel equipment (sled, stroller and baby carrier)
First, the baby carrier gives your little one the advantage of benefiting from your body heat while simplifying your movements, but remain vigilant to avoid falls. A pair of crampons is always an asset for the wearer! Please note that rigid underwire baby carriers (hiking baby carriers) are generally not recommended in winter, but often appreciated when the weather is milder. These summer carriers are made to favor airflow, this exposing the baby to the cold wind. In addition, its non-ergonomic sitting position does not ensure optimal blood circulation, which increases the risks of frostbites on their little feet. Concerning the choice between the stroller and the sled, it depends on the type of soil, the quantity and quality of the snow, its ease of sliding or rolling and the difference in level of your place of exit.
Regardless of the mode of transportation chosen for your child, you must ensure that their body temperature stays high at all times. Since a baby does not express himself when cold, it is important to watch for the slightest signs of temperature by touching their cheeks, nose, hands and feet. Also, don’t forget to wipe his or her saliva to avoid frostbites. Make sure you can recognize the signs of skin chill (redness) and frostbite (whiteness).
Our favorite little tips:
- To provide an additional source of heat for babies in a stroller or sled, use a hot water bottle at their feet. Fill a water bottle with heat-resistant water (e.g. a Nalgene) with boiling water. Make sure to secure the lid to avoid leaking and take care to put it away from the skin so as not to scald your baby. The hot water bottle is a great thing. To try it is to adopt it!
- Always try to insulate yourself from the ground, bring a foam mattress to sit on during the break or tame the cold otherwise with a snack, a dessert or why not an outdoor picnic!
- Nothing is hotter than a fur coat in the bottom of a sleigh.
- Use styrofoam packaging to make a home made sole and add additional insulation to your child’s feet in the sleigh.
Written by Joanie St-Pierre, Founder of Kiddy in the Backcountry and professional guide in adventure tourism,
Photo credit: Christyna Mérette