Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Traveling with a Toddler

Tomorrow, we leave for sunny Southern California. Flying on Thanksgiving day, you ask. Why, yes. It seems like the perfect day to travel. We didn’t need to battle the crowds that are leaving today – not to mention the $$$ it saved us to fly on Thursday. The good news is that California is 3 hours behind us, so we will get there at 11:30am – not bad. Not to mention, my brother is an LA County fireman/emt; he has to work on Thanksgiving day, so we aren’t having our get together until Friday. Hopefully it will be the best day in the world to fly.

We need to leave our house at 4:00am for our 6:45am flight. Sound good? I’m preparing for the worst with Timmy – hopefully I will be pleasantly surprised! We haven’t flown with Timmy in 11 months. That was a mixed bag of experiences. We thought we would be smart with our trip to California – we took an evening flight thinking Timmy would sleep. We left at nap time for our 2 hour drive to Boston. He slept for 30 minutes! Then, when it came time for nigh-nigh, he wasn’t having any part of it. It was miserable. He was uncomfortable and kept saying, “done, done, nigh-nigh, done.” It was pretty sad. There wasn’t anything we could do. About 45 minutes before the flight landed, he fell asleep – that didn’t do us much good cause he woke as soon as we landed and they turned on all the lights. The return trip was in the morning and that proved to be a better experience. Therefore, both flights this time around are morning flights.

Last time, we decide to heck with taking a car seat through the airport. We bought this new thing called, CARES: Kids Fly Safe. It’s a harness system that attaches to the airplane seat. May I just say – kudos to the person that created this! As long as you have access to a car seat at the other end of your journey, it’s the easiest way to fly! (By the way - not my kid - just one from their website.)

This time we are ready with our CARES system and a bag of tricks. I have the following packed for Timmy:

Several colors of play dough and an activity kit complete with plastic cookie cutters for the play dough.
Boat loads of new crayons
New pad for coloring
A mini feather duster, AKA “tickler” in our house
Foam craft ornament kit
Personal DVD Player
15 Movies to choose from
Books and more books
Stickers for trips to the potty
Bag of skittles for trips to the potty

Will this carry me through a 5 hour flight, 1 hour layover and another 45 minute flight? I don’t know, but I sure hope so. The last time we traveled with the DVD player he wouldn’t have any part of the headphones. I wonder how he will do this time. Planes are so noisy, that trying to hear it without headphones is almost impossible.

We are flying Southwest for the first time ever – I’m nervous about the lack of seat assignments. Neither of us can handle a toddler without the other on a cross-country trip, so we really need to sit together. The agent that booked my flight said they have pre-boarding for people with small kids, so hopefully that will be the case! Otherwise, I will be saying my prayers for a good boarding number.

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!


Anonymous said...

Flying ... on Thanksgiving ... pregnant ... with a toddler ...

You are one brave woman!!

Hope you guys had a safe trip and a great Thanksgiving!

Rebecca said...

Are yuo back yet? I am really curious how it went. I want to fly with the kids next time I go see my brother - it is a short flight, but I am still worried.

I hope you had a blast!!!!

Todd said...

Oh it was so fun going west.....we shall see how the trip east goes!