Monday, January 14, 2013

Packing & Traveling with Isaac

We've been home from our Georgia trip for over a week now and I am so thankful that it only took Isaac a couple of days to get back into his "normal" routine. When I initially started writing this post, I had a whole paragraph singing the praises of our sweet boy and his easy-going nature. But then he woke up from his nap in a fury and I decided to delete a few sentences before I really jinxed myself.

Anyway, back to our trip. First, the packing. I had no idea what I might need or not need, so I ended up packing most of the house, as evidenced by this picture:

Yes folks, that's a king size bed. 
Scary, huh? I took two suitcases (thank you Southwest Airlines), one that was 50 pounds on the dot and another that was hovering just below 50. Ridiculous. Mind you, I was also taking Christmas presents, which took up a lot of extra room. Plus, we were gone for EIGHT days, which in hindsight was entirely too long. There were only a couple of baby items that never made it out of the suitcase. And what's the really embarrassing part? My sister Jennifer and friend Holly provided us with all the major baby gear we could ever need: car seat, stroller, swing, pack'n'play... you name it, they had it. Also, my dad bought us a giant box of diapers and wipes to use at his house/the hotel so I only needed to pack enough for our first travel day.

So it would seem like we had everything we needed waiting for us in Georgia. I'm sure you're asking yourself, what in the world was in his suitcase you say?

  • My Pump and all it's accessories. (This also includes milk storage bags and breast pads.)
  • 2 Bottles and a steam cleaning bag
  • The Boppy. (bulky and not absolutely necessary, but well used!)
  • Plenty of burp cloths, bibs, and a couple of hand towels for those big spits.
  • A few "going out" outfits 
  • A few "stay at home" outfits (socks also)
  • PJs and 2 swaddlers
  • A couple of blankets
  • Travel-sized baby shampoo and lotion (not needed- was also waiting for us @ my Dad's house)
  • Isaac's D-Vi-Sol
  • Baby Monitor (didn't use it.)
  • Bath Luve (didn't make it out of the suitcase either)
And specifically in the diaper bag:
  • Enough diapers & wipes to endure 2 flights and a 2 hour car ride.
  • Diaper rash cream
  • Sanitizing wet wipes for those grody airport bathroom changing areas
  • A couple of pacifiers even though Isaac isn't a paci man
  • The K'tan (lifesaver.)
  • Bib, burp cloth, hand towel and extra outfit
  • His birth certificate
Next time we'll certainly leave the unnecessary items at home, but I would imagine they'll more than likely be replaced with other needs. I consider myself supremely lucky to get out of hauling around baby gear, because hauling a carseat through the airport in tandem with everything else I was toting sounds like torture. I also didn't have to worry about carrying formula/milk through security because I was able to nurse Isaac on the plane. Even though we made it through fairly successfully, next time we'll also bring someone else along, so I'm not trying to haul around 2 suitcases, 2 carry-ons, and a baby by myself. (did I forget to mention that Jordan and I traveled separately?)

The flying itself was as easy as everyone predicted. He seemed completely unfazed by the plane -I nursed on all 4 takeoffs (2 flights there and 2 flights home), which was my first totally public nursing session (lets face it, the backseat of the car and a locked dressing room are still private). While I love nursing my son, I'm also painfully modest and sensitive to other people. I'm just not going to be that person who just whips it out. Several strategic layers and a nursing cover kept me as inconspicuous as possible when you're elbow to elbow with strangers. Luckily, he slept through 3 of 4 flights - two of which were the longer legs (hooray!). I can't be certain, but I would deduce that he was soothed by all the white noise of the plane. Anyway, the flights to Georgia were a total breeze. The flights back to Texas were also fuss-free, but unfortunately not babypuke free. Both of our return flights were christened with spit up. Many apologies to Southwest Airlines for the wall and floor mess. There's only so much clean up you can do when you're in a confined space, wearing a seatbelt, holding a baby, with neighbors within inches. 

The rest of the travel days were hit or miss. We had a delay during our first layover, which led to some fussiness in the airport, but it was nothing a little walking and bouncing couldn't remedy. Navigating the airport with no more than 2 hands was a challenge- especially when it came to using the bathroom and eating- but it was short lived and we both survived. Driving for 2 hours after already enduring 2 flights and a prolonged layover was a little too much for Isaac to handle all in one day. He screamed almost non-stop from Atlanta to Augusta, which fried this already tired momma's nerves. Thankfully, we were already in Atlanta for Passion 2013, so our travel day home didn't include that long commute to the airport. 

Our next trip to Georgia is already materializing and this time I will be certain to travel with my baby-toting, boob-shielding, sanity-relieving husband! It already feels so much easier.

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