I Went on Vacation and All I Got Were These Crappy iPhone Pics

August 19, 2012 at 9:46 pm | Posted in Family, Life | Leave a comment
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So, we went on vacation–the first non-family-visiting vacation we have taken since W and I went to Mackinac in 2009.  Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love seeing my family and friends, but there is something especially wonderful about being on a vacation where you don’t have to cram in visits with every last person you know, and you can just do whatever you want.  My favorite thing to do on vacation is eat, so with that in mind, we went to Austin!

It still kind of blows my mind that we are so much closer to Austin (and Dallas and just about everywhere else in Texas , for that matter) now when we live in a different state than when we actually lived in Texas.  So six hours seemed like a pretty reasonable drive, and it really was. LC was great.

ready for vacay

Ready to hit the road!

Everyone knows that vacationing with a kid (a rambunctious toddler, no less!) is much less relaxing than vacationing pre-baby, but we tried to do some things that would help us, the parents, to have a better time.

  • First, we came prepared for the car ride.  We know from previous experience that LC is not the kid who conks out the minute you put the car in drive. So we needed to keep her entertained and happy.  What worked well for us (thanks to my sis for the advice!): new books (3), stickers, plenty of snacks and water, iPhone apps and/or iPad videos, kids’ music, a new toy (I picked up a Cabbage Patch Cutie at Target the day before and she loved it–but hers doesn’t have any hair and it’s much cuter that way!) We kept the screen time as a last resort, and really we didn’t have to use it much, so I was okay with it.
  • We accepted the fact that we’d need to stop.  Of course this is sort of a no-brainer, but we’re used to just pushing through on long trips, so we just had to mentally prepare for the trip taking longer.  It made LC happier to get out of the car every 2-3 hours, so it was totally worth it for everyone’s sanity.
  • We rented a 2-bedroom apartment through airbnb.com.  This was hands-down the best decision we made.  Not only was our apartment in the best location we could have imagined (10 minutes or less from almost everything we wanted to see and do), but it was about the same price as a regular hotel room, with many more amenities and most importantly, we didn’t have to share a room with the baby and go to sleep at 7 pm.
  • We built naptime into our day.  It’s tempting to cram in as much as possible when you’re in a new city for a limited amount of time, but making sure that LC was well-rested made all of our other activities much more enjoyable.  Plus, taking a midday nap almost made up for not being able to sleep in in the morning.
Amy's ice cream

First ice cream with sprinkles!

The one thing I did that I DON’T recommend? Leaving your nice camera at home.  Which is why all of our vacation photos are courtesy of my iPhone.

Up next, I hope to share some of the highlights of the things we saw and did in Austin (hint: most of them involve food).

ATX, I love you so! I can’t wait to go back!

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Traveling with baby at 6 months

October 10, 2011 at 9:41 pm | Posted in Family, Life, Thankful things | Leave a comment
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There is more that I will add to this topic later, but I just want to quickly type a little now.

Yesterday I traveled about 2000 miles from our house to my mom’s so that I can stand up as a bridesmaid in my best friend’s wedding this coming weekend.  My friend B asked me to be a bridesmaid while I was pregnant, and I talked it over with my husband and we both thought that there would be no reason why I couldn’t accept.

And then as we got closer to the wedding, there was one snag: he wouldn’t be able to make the trip with me, and due to his work/classesand my breastfeeding, I also had to bring Miss LC. By myself. Cue freaking out and hair pulling.

 Yesterday we traveled for about 12 hours, including times to and from the airport, and a 3.5 hour layover in Chicago.  And friends, I am here to tell you: YOU CAN DO IT. It’s not guaranteed to go well, but it can.

My number one piece of advice for traveling alone with an infant? Have a plan and make things as easy as possible for yourself.

I flew alone with LC in July but she was barely four months old then, and now she’s nearly seven months and crawling and wriggling and much harder to entertain so I was very nervous.

Baby and daddy playing at the airport. Escort pass FTW!

This time, I’m so glad I:

  • cancelled the cheap flight that required a 3-hr drive to my parents’ house after
  • dressed nicely to fly
  • brought the snap ‘n go AND the ergo
  • took the diaper bag as my carry-on and packed LIGHT (well, as light as possible, and my checked suitcase was still overweight. FAIL.)
  • accepted help whenever it was offered to me
  • smiled a lot and used my super cute baby to win the hearts of my fellow passengers

More detail on how it all went down (and how I was so lucky that LC cooperated so well, even past her bedtime) soon!

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