Saturday, January 24, 2009

The Long Way Home

The extended Wo family is close by. Once a year we drive 5 or 6 hours to see my MIL but apart from that I only have to deal with 'are we there yet?' over a span of 20-40 minutes.

Next week one of my best friends will journey home to see her family 5260 miles away. Since her husband just started a new job he will not be going along. I wish I could go with her and help with her 3 year old boy and one year old girl. Bless 'er my friend's sister has come to help her travel east, she'll be solo west. That is a long trip.

Duo, or especially solo, there is dread. I mean it doesn't matter if you have a kid "disconnect" in flight for 20 minutes or 2 hours, it can be dreadful. All you can do is your best, right? Gather some tools, be prepared, spin the cylinder of cabin-pressured humanity and live to tell the tale. I remember being a fellow passenger with little people back when I had a travel-life. If your kid is mostly behaved and you pay attention you are a great traveling parent. No one expects 10 out of 10; most cabin mates are realistic.

I wish I could help more than a sticker book and some understanding. The librarian in me is out for some intel and info, too. What is this blog for? Please share with me -- and my friend -- any tips, tricks and warnings you can. Activities, must pack toys, divine distractions, breathing techniques, what-have-you...

Bon Voyage, J. I am so happy for you and your family that you will all be together SOON. Here's hoping it's soon enough.

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Blogger Mad said...

We have flown a lot with our daughter.

Yes, sticker books are a god-send--those thick ones with 300+ stickers can take a kid a long way. Also, puzzle books, wherein there is a small 20 piece puzzle on each page. There's a good Charlie and Lola one about spiders but I'm sure there's a gazillion out there. Then there are those Crayola Colour-Wonder books with the markers and faintly toxic smelling paper. B/c they are a step above your common garden variety colouring book, they keep interest longer. Plus they make it impossible to colour outside the lines and that seems to give kids a confidence- and interest-boost.

The 1-yr-old is harder. I can't quite remember how we managed flights when Miss M was one but we did somehow.

Also, the second you get on the plane, make the stewards fill all your water, milk, juice cups. If security won't let you through with fluids, then make sure the airline is on its toes such that you aren't stranded with a thirsty or ear-popping toddler.

And snacks. Make sure you have a wide variety of snacks on you. Kids seem able to eat their way through the larder when traveling.

5:02 p.m.  
Anonymous cheesefairy said...

Brand new, as in, never seen before toys. Bag of age-appropriate random toys at Value Village (or other thrift store)= $1.99. We flew with T when he was 9 months & a 5 hr flight was just edging into unpleasant. But he didn't have his own seat, so there was that.

And yes, buttloads of finger foodie snacks.

11:59 a.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm already charging up my ipod. More for my benefit than for the boys. I don't want to hear 13 hours of whining anymore than anyone else.

8:04 p.m.  

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