Thursday, April 15, 2010

On Flying, Squirming and Peeing in the Seat

We took the Ladies down to Dallas over the weekend. My hubby had his first event of the season and since his brother lives down there we tagged along to see the family.

The Lady was super excited to see her 4-year old cousin, who shares an affinity for all things princess and high drama.

But first, we had to get there. . .

Flying is a pain in the ass in general. And unless you are one of those super efficient fliers like my husband, who is accustomed to the ins and outs of the airport, who is Platinum on American and who doesn't need to carry a purse, diaper bag and a baby strapped across their chest, then you know what a hassle just getting to the plane can be.

We had one joint suitcase for the four of us, one carry on suitcase, the diaper bag, a clear, pink feather fringed backpack, a computer bag, a carseat, a infant carseat and base, an umbrella stroller, golf clubs, an infant carrier, two kids and hopefully enough snacks. This was for a grand total of about 3 and a half days.

We parked the car, loaded out the kids, the checked baggage and headed for the counter. I have to say that travelling with my husband does have perks. He is on the road often enough that his points have enabled me to fly free for the past two years or so and the luxury of skipping the line and heading to the First Class/Priority counter makes a world of difference.

We checked in and checked our bags.The Ladies and I hung out in the terminal while my husband went back to the car (it also helps if your husband's company pays for parking--this allows you to park in the daily lot and not have to worry about hopping on the bus from long-term parking), picked up the carry-on luggage and met us back by security.

Ah, security. The logistics of getting everything off, through and reassembled can be a bit of a challenge. I will have to say that I think we did a good job. Now, I am not skilled in a ton of things. I know I make good cookies, I am an okay writer and pretty good with trivia, however, since becoming a mother, I have honed the ability to do things with one hand and retrieve items with my toes.

I was able to get the Lady's shoes off and fold up the stroller with one hand, then was able to pick up a dropped princess, light-up sneaker as well as my flips with my toes, while carrying the Little Lady in one hand and Gerry, Moonie, Giant Gerry and Mr. Ducks in the other. For as much stuff as we had I think things moved pretty smoothly.

Since we lost some time waiting for my husband to make the second trip from the car, we didn't have enough time to feed the little Lady her breakfast, this meant applesauce on the plane. I was able to pick up an iced coffee, some yogurt, a bag of trail mix, a Powerade and a copy of Rolling Stone Magazine with the cast of Glee on the cover, but I also had to find a place to put all of it. I am sure it was a sight to be seen with the Little Lady in the carrier, trying to paw at the coffee and yogurt I was balancing in one-hand, while pushing the Lady in the stroller through the jetway with the other. Did I mention we were like three rows from the back of the plane? Oh yeah--we were.

I was worried about the Lady on the flight. I thought that she might get restless and try to escape her seat. I couldn't have been more wrong about her. She was actually very good, minus a few moments of irritability, and she actually fell asleep for about 45 minutes. The Little Lady on the other hand was a whole lot of wiggle.

8-month olds in general are starting to move and the Little Lady is no exception. She is constantly reaching for everything around her. This includes iced coffees, her sister's hair, safety instruction cards tucked in the back of seats and barf bags. She is nimble, she is dexterous and she is quick. Needless to say, she was a bit of a handful on the flight. She never screamed or was super fussy, she was just in constant motion. She also pooped on board and threw her pacifier, spoon and toys on the floor so many times, I thought I might have to burn them when we disembarked because Lord knows what kind of germs she picked up.

And speaking of germs on the flight and changing diapers . . . do not, in an attempt to get your 2.5 year-old dressed and out of the house for a 10:15 am flight put her in a pull-up when she isn't quite potty trained. This will only lead to not changing her into a diaper before the flight leaves, due to lack of time and hope of avoiding a terminal tantrum, and then realizing that she has peed through said pull-up, her clothes and all over the seat. However, please thank your husband for taking her into that tiny bathroom and changing her and finding a blanket to cover the seat with. Note to all travelers: DO NOT USE THOSE BLANKETS--you never know whose 2 year old peed on the seat and had to cover it up! I know it is super gross and makes me kind of skeeved out as a fellow traveler to know that there might be urine or worse on these seats, but such is life and at least she wasn't kicking the seat non-stop the entire ride or screaming crying.

When we finally made it to Dallas, we had to do the baggage thing in reverse. My husband took the Lady and the carseat to pick up the rental car, while the Little Lady and I waited on the luggage. He then parked, came back in with the Lady and helped us lug all the stuff out to the car. I do think that things could have gone much worse. I was grateful that we didn't have any delays, that there was no lost luggage, and that the Ladies were relatively well-behaved. That is of course until we actually got to my Brother-in-law's.

That however is another blog post. . .

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