Oh the places we will go

I can remember before my son came along how incredibly easy it was when my husband and I would travel when we wanted to leave the house. You take for granted not having to wake up 2-3hours before you have to leave just so you can make it somewhere on time.

But I wouldn’t change it for the world. I am so glad that we hat eight wonderful years of traveling, going out on he town, sleeping in, last-minute trips and date nights alone every week. Even though it takes us a little longer to get places traveling as a family of three has been some of the best times. Being able to witness my son and husband seeing NYC for the first time, experiencing time square and the look of awe in my sons face makes the nights we went to bed early in the city worth it.

Visiting Disney for the first time and the impromptu trips we have taken since then take my breath away. The look of splendor that comes across my sons face as he sees Buzz Lightyear(from a distance, he is not cool with how life-size he is lol) sends a big smile across my face. I feel like a kid again.

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It doesn’t even have to be a getaway or vacation for me to enjoy our time together. the simple act of going to the park or target means a nice afternoon of exploring and hearing you squeal with delight as you discover something new

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I will say that the most difficult venture that we have taken is the one to MommyCon Orlando. You wanted to see your dad and it didn’t matter that mommy waited since October to attend. Some would day I need to teach you to go with my the flow of MY schedule. I am your mother though and I could tell you were uncomfortable. You cried most of the way home and when you saw our street you yelled out “papa here!” When we got home you ran to your father and clung to his side the entire day. Even though I was disappointed in missing mommy con, I was so elated that you love your father that much and that he is here to spend time with you and smother you with love.

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There are so many places that I want to travel with you and I can’t wait to see what journey life will take us on. I am so glad to have you and your father as my traveling buddies. Oh the places we will go…

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Come on mom, where have places to go

 

How I Keep My Sanity AND My Toddlers While Traveling

My son has been on 8 plane rides(counting going to and from our destinations) Each time he has been occupied and the people sitting in front of us and behind us has commented that they didn’t even know there was a child near them. That makes me smile because I work hard to keep my toddlers sanity and mine when we are traveling. I have traveled recently without the help of my husband.

These are some of the things that I did that helped me during my trip. I will say this disclaimer: only YOU know the personality of your child and some of these things may work and some of them may not. I can only tell you what worked for me. I would highly suggest that you read this to give you some ideas and then you can make changes that may be needed to fit your child’s personality

1. Chose a flight time that is close or includes your child’s normal nap time: This has helped us every time we have flown, I have purposely paid a little more for my ticket just so I can get a nap time in. I know my son and if I wake him up early for a flight, he will go to sleep early. I also know that he only takes one nap a day so it’s important that I keep his sanity and mine. Sure the times may not be so convenient for us but the passengers and your child will thank you

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A sleepy baby makes a happy mommy

 

2. Bring toys they have never seen before:  As a childless person I always wondered what the big deal was when it came to those dollar bins at target. NOW I KNOW!!! That is one of the best places to get little coloring books, toys, little games that you can make a nice little goody bag for your toddler. It also helps that you don’t mind if they get lost while on the trip. Stickers are another genius thing to take. You can take vinyl stickers so they can stick it to the window on the plane(cheaper version would be sticky notes) Or you could also just by regular stickers and a notebook that they can put the stickers into.

3. APPS:  I will not debate the pros and cons of a toddler using a tablet. I will say do what works for your family. I have a few apps that I love that are educational and keeps their attention for a while(if they decide not to take a nap or even just a quick one)  Some of my favorite ones are: Endless ABC’s, Endless Numbers, Elmo Calls, Any of the fisher price apps and counting 123.

4. Favorite movies: My son will watch a few movies over and over, he will also watch them on silent and still be entertained. I make sure to put one or two movies on my tablet for the plane and any layovers I may have.

5. SNACKS:  Did you know you can pretty much bring anything for a toddler lol I brought little baggies of Apples, Pears, A whole banana, peanut butter cheerios, some chicken cut up into pieces and water for my son. The key is to bring a variety that they will love. If you bring liquid for your child TSA will test it(without opening it, they have a machine that will do that) This was AWESOME, I was a little hungry on the flight and I was able to snack a little as well( say no thank you to those little mini pretzels that leave you wanting more)

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Pears are a favorite of my little guys

 

6. I like to board early:  Some parents who have high energy children will wait until the last min to board and that is great. My son needs to get into the mindset that we are about to sit. So when the flight states that all families may board that is what we do. This gives me a chance to get all situated without bumping into the person next to me. I can make sure that the bag that has all the goodies is within reach and this also gives my son a chance to stretch a little and wave to the passengers boarding, which he loves.

These are just a few things that have helped me when I travel.  Sometimes I have to pull them all out on one flight and other times he may nap the entire flight or just want to look at a movie. Really depends on my sons mood. I will say that with travel you just need to be flexible and try to enjoy it. I pay the extra $50(roundtrip) to check my bags, it’s nice not to fight over the overhead compartment and to only have to worry about your kid on the flight. Remember, when you are calm that helps your child be calm, we all know that traveling can be stressful but it’s only for a short trip, you can make it.

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Toddlers and babies LOVE the window seat

 

New York State of Mind

I am missing NYC so bad right now. I wish I had my own private jet so I can fly my family up there so we can see the city sights and just enjoy each others company. Back to reality! I know we will make it up there again, maybe this year, maybe not. But until we do, I have my pictures to look thorough and keep me in that New York state of mind.

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I love it when we’re crusin’ together

My husband and I decided we wanted to end the year with a BANG! so Dec 16-22 we were on a fabulous cruise to the Caribbean(Yes we survived the “end of the world” at sea)  Our stops were Grand Caymen, Caymen Islands, Ocho Rios, Jamaica and Labadee, Haiti(An Island that is owned by Royal Caribbean International)

My husband was amazing this was an anniversary gift to me and the fist night we boarded the cruise he had a anniversary cake delivered to our stateroom. Before

We didn’t have a knife and hey we were on vacation so you throw all rules out the window and take a relaxed view at things :) by the time we were done with this cake it looked like this.

                                                                                   After(it was yummy)

The cruise was 6 fun filled days and the adventures that we had will last us a life time, between meeting RAD DAN ( A CRAZY man on the boat who we thought had been locked into boat jail because we didn’t see him for three full days), My husband getting hit on by a 90 yr old women (who we named Delores) and she shimmied over to him in the elevator using her walker so we of course had to create a dance and call it the Delores

                                                                  Kevin doing the “Delores” in Ocho Rios, Jamaica

The breathtaking views of Jamaica and our crazy driver Cool Johnny who drove us all around and Labadee the view from the cabana that we rented was just BREATHTAKING and looked like it was unreal. if you are looking for a vacation to take I highly recommend a cruise its so worth it. You can eat at any time of the day they have amazing food. great service and you can see the beauty and indulge yourself in the many cultures that you meet not only on the boat(Royal Caribbean has workers from over 90 countries) but also speaking with all of the people from the areas you visit. I am def ready for my next cruise! who’s coming with me?

 

                                                                          You can’t go to Jamaica and not drink a red stripe

                                                                    Our Crazy Cab driver “Cool” Johnny

The ladies for formal night

Formal Night

View from our Cabana in Labadee, Haiti