Last month we had our first trip abroad as a four, it was amazing and something I'd anticipated from the moment we booked it four months prior. We've been out of the country every year since as long as I can remember, and it's something I have continued with my sons, I really love for them to explore and for us to have these special memories together as a family. However, travelling with children isn't always easy, particularly babies. They need a lot because they're doing quite a lot. If you're thinking about heading away and are anything like me, you'll be researching heavily into what you can and can't be without when abroad, I'm hoping my little must have's will give you that little extra help in figuring it out.

First up has to be the SnoozeShade - without a shadow of a doubt it is an essential and something we will never, ever be without when in the sunshine from now until Patrick is out of his pushchair. I wish we'd known about this product when Noah was a baby as we travelled to Tunisia one year and the sun was incredibly intense, it would have been perfect. Nevertheless I'm thankful we are now in the know. It's so easy to attach, is universal and most importantly it protects your little one from those harmful UV rays as well as pesky bugs and insects. I can proudly say Patrick never suffered one insect bite even though we went out almost every evening whilst away, I definitely put that down to the fabulous SnoozeShade.

Our second most used product whilst away, as you can see is a dummy clip. Patrick does use a dummy when he's sleeping or when we're hoping he'll drift off to sleep like above. However, the smart cookie has clued on quickly to the second scenario and if he suspects we're wanting him to have a doze, he will just play the whole 'throw the dummy away, cry for it back, throw it away again' game, which is fun for all of around 0.3 seconds. A clip saved us from sandy or lost dummies, again proving vital on the plane when I needed him to suck it on ascent and descent to avoid those pesky popping ears, otherwise I'm certain it would have ended up being thrown four rows backwards. However on the side of caution I wouldn't advise any with beads or balls on, always try for a strap option as the others can be known to break and then obviously, are a major choking hazard.

Next up for us was the boys SimplySwim bathing suits. These are perfect even for home, but as we were heading to a hotter climate I really wanted to grab the boys something that was going to protect them from the glaring rays during pool frolics and these did just that. Noah is a total water baby so it was essential that he had something that could protect him, so I didn't have to lure him from the water every 45 minutes to reapply the suncream. I'm a sucker for neoprene costumes as I know it keeps babies that little bit warmer, thankfully my parents pool is heated so it wasn't a worry but should we have ventured into the sea we would have definitely been grateful for that extra warmth.

Talking about sun cream, Mustela have won it for us. We were kindly sent a few pieces from them to try out and knowing we we're setting off for sunnier skies I decided to pop this in the suitcase, happy in the knowledge that I already had 3 bottles of Nivea we would no doubt lean more toward using. On day 2 I remembered the Mustela sunscreen and tried it on Patrick, I was so pleasantly surprised by how much I loved it - a little went a long, long way, we didn't even finish the bottle even though both boys and John used it every single day from then on. It seemed to wear a lot better than others when my smalls where in and out of the water. We've already grabbed another bottle to pop into their nursery bags for summer time.

Lastly, but by no means least is this Vital Baby 'trap a snack' pot. Again, something that can be used for all ages but we found extra helpful for Patrick. He was 10 months when we travelled and at that stage when he's really wanting to do things his way, that independence is slowly settling in so when it came to feeding we already knew before we headed out to Spain that it was going to be a little different. As we flew during the day, a meal on the plane for him was essential however trying to spoon feed just wasn't going to happen, I'm thankful we planned it out in hindsight as the seat belt signs were on for most of the outbound journey so we wouldn't have even had the option to mess around. Thanks to the trap a snack, I was able to pop in little squares of sandwitch that he could help himself too, along with a little selection of fruit. Yes, we could have used an ordinary bowl or let him grab them from the flip down tray but that would have most certainly resulted in half of his food on the floor and cries for said dinner.

*Some products where sent for review purposes.

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