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Family Cruising Discuss family cruising - kids programs, babysitting, infant care, etc.

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  #1  
Old October 3rd, 2004, 09:53 PM
ScottG
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Default Feeding an 18-month old

I keep seeing comments about activities and babysitting when dealing with 18 month olds. My concern is feeding our 18 month old on a cruise. At home, we feed our daughter a controlled, balanced diet. Due to the lack of molars we make sure that the food is super soft and gummable. With a "entire family going" cruise just around the corner, we talked to our Pediatrician about taking our daughter on a cruise. The first thing she shared was the importance of having had her MMR shots (2 of them). The second typically not given until 5 yrs old but can be pushed up if needed but not recommended. The second thing she shared was that if we take a cruise, advoid having her eat food prepared on ships going to the Caribbean or Mexico - our destination is the Caribbean. Use bottled water to cook her food too. Since we can't feed her exclusively baby food from jars and don't have a way to cook in our room we are wondering what experiences others may have had when it came to feeding little ones while on cruises. Thanks.
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Old October 4th, 2004, 09:29 AM
alison1170 alison1170 is offline
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Default Re: Feeding an 18-month old

Our son was 11 mos when he went on his first cruise to the western carib (including Mexico). By then he was eating mostly regular food. I did bring along Cheerios, instant oatmeal, some of his favorite baby snacks/food just to be sure he had something he liked to eat (hes very picky). I ended up carrying most of it home with us. He drank regular water, regular milk (or formula I cant recall), and juice without any problems. He even ate regular meals / food from the buffet without any problems. Our son didnt have his molars, and did just fine with most foods (bananas, pancakes, bread, fish, yogurt, cereal, chicken, etc as long as it was cut up small enough). He was up to date on all his shots (the dr didnt say anything about giving him more just for the trip). You can always get hot water, or have the waiter heat stuff up for you (might take a little longer). If your child requires special foods, either bring them along with you, or call the cruise line to see if they can have it on board (they might already). We have cruised a lot and we have never gotten sick. We are not obsessed about what we eat or washing hands, though Im a bit more cautious on board. I carry wet wipes and Purell just in case as a young one puts everything in his mouth. You might want to bring along baby medicine (infant tylenol, motrin, band aids, aloe, etc) to save an expesive and time consuming trip to the ship dr (we went once because our son burned himself on a curling iron I had put out of reach). They dont sell these in the ship stores, and in port the brands might be different. Just relax and enjoy your trip.

alison

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  #3  
Old October 4th, 2004, 12:04 PM
LisaK LisaK is offline
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Default Re: Feeding an 18-month old

the food on the ship is safe and sanitary. Its the local foods that might be a bit iffy.
There are plenty of choices for your little one from the children's menu, and your waiter can always take the food back to the kitchen and have it pureed or chopped up very small.
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Old October 4th, 2004, 02:19 PM
Luisa
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Default Re: Feeding an 18-month old

My son went on four cruises by the time he was two years old and we didn't have any problems. As someone mentioned, you can ask waiters to puree things for you if necessary. I did bring some healthy snacks along for just in case times.
I wouldn't advise pushing up any shots -- that could cause more problems than it's worth. Actually, my son was a bit behind on his shots until recently and he never got any major diseases on the cruises. Just try to keep their hands out of their mouths when you can and relax....it'll be a great family trip!
Smooth sailing,
Luisa Frey Gaynor
Family Cruise Editor
P.S. Make sure you read, "Taking the baby" article that I wrote about cruising w/babies and toddlers. It's on the main family page here...
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Old October 5th, 2004, 03:19 PM
JVC
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Default Re: Feeding an 18-month old

I just returned with my 16 month old. I brought sani-wipe things and purell and a bottle of Lysol AND bottled water & I though I was being bad... While I am sure your DR means well, I can't imagine why he/she would recommend against feeding your toddler with ship's food? Or bumping up the MMR booster? I think it's okay to be cautious but that may be taking it a bit far. There were lots of toddlers and younger eating, playing and drinking water on our ship. All seemed to be okay. I know mine was fine afterward. I also hauled a LOT of food home that went unused. The ship will probably accomodate any diet your child may be on. There's bound to be something! There's soooooo much to choose from! Do what you feel is best but know that all will probably be just fine.
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Old October 6th, 2004, 09:18 AM
alison1170 alison1170 is offline
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Default Re: Feeding an 18-month old

Just avoid any water (ice, mixed in with cold drinks that hasnt been boiled, etc) in Mexico and maybe in a few other ports. I dont even drink that water! The ship will sell bottled water on port days, but be prepared for the $$!

alison

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CCL-Bahamas
HAL-Caribbean
PCL-Caribbean, Alaska, Panama Canal
12/02 RCI-Enchantment-Western Caribbean
12/03 RCI-Navigator-Western Caribbean
12/04 RCI-Mariner-Eastern Caribbean
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  #7  
Old October 6th, 2004, 01:42 PM
pg. pg. is offline
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Default Re: Feeding an 18-month old

What kind of doctor have you? We took our 6 month old and our 20 month old on a Mexican cruise and they were fine,. Of course when on shore they only ate of drank(breast fed baby) things we brought from the ship and they were fine. Is your doctor very old? I would not push up boosters, there is a reason they are spaced.
I did bring a small " hand mill" to grind( purree) the kids some fruit and veggies, we just ordered steamed plain veggies and did it ourselves right at the table.
At 18 months old , even without molars your child is capable of eating real food( unless there is a medical issue you haven't shared with us, in which case of course that changes things) just chop and grind it yourself. We prefered to do it ourselves since we could then see the " raw materials " ourselves.
Bring a refillable water bottle from home to fill with juice etc from ships buffet for the shore trips. Bring your own sippy cups also.
As pointed out thousands of kids your childs age and younger cruise just fine without a lot of extra precautions. Wash hands, wipe down the high chair tray with a wet wipe ( anti germacide) and please relax!!

I would be extrememly cautious regarding the pushed up shots. Your child will not be in contact with other kids on the shore much and Mexico does in fact vaccinate most of their kids so don't get too freaked out.

Have a great trip and take lots of sunscreen( our doc said Ombrelle was good and it was) , which incidently should be applied BEFORE you go to the beach or pool. Our kids never burned , they are fair, and they didn't even get a tan!
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