How (Not) to Travel with Little Ones

So just to recap on our day from hell yesterday 😂 we left West Palm to come back to the tundra and let’s just say that I’m starting to wonder if I should write a book on all our ridiculous travel experiences.

Dropped the car rental off early so we could grab breakfast with mom which was great. Realized on the way to the airport later that we were so focused on getting the car there and having time for breakfast that we forgot to fill it up with gas. Still not sure what they’re going to charge us but that on top of the two toll violation tickets (for lack of cash for one or a working card for the other) I’d say we’re on a roll! Not to mention the fact that we had to keep the car an extra day in order to use our debit card because our credit card wouldn’t read. Apparently to use a debit card you have to have a return flight and our return flight was a day later than we wanted the rental car 🙄

Whatever. So we got to the airport two hours before our flight as recommended. I was so glad we didn’t have to rush and be all stressed out. We were even able to switch things around in our luggage to make the weight requirements without being too overwhelmed at all the people in line waiting for us to hurry the heck up. We were so early in fact that we had to entertain two rambunctious toddlers for an hour and a half. We blocked off a section with the stroller so they could run around and have fun and hopefully tire themselves out for naptime. All Aveya wanted to do was stick her fingers in the outlets and climb all over the chairs, giving mommy many slight heart attacks. When she started playing with my souvenir travel mug I didn’t think much of it. I was letting her play with it because it was the only thing keeping her content for a few minutes. Joke’s on me. She broke it into dozens of little pieces along with my heart because I was so excited about that thing 😭

Once we got on the plane it felt like a relief. Soon they would be sleeping. She and I were playing together all sweetly until she gave me a bloody nose. Perfect. Thank God it was naptime and her and Jedidiah would be going down soon... right? Wrong. It was playtime for them! Pretty sure I got a month’s worth of exercise in that 3.5 hour plane ride trying to keep up with Aveya (and not to mention diffusing the Jeddi bombs that kept going off). Then FINALLY when she was getting sleepy I had to pee like a racehorse. I handed her off to dada and came back to her out like a light. Wow so glad all my hard work paid off 🙄 she napped while I drifted in and out of consciousness as every time I’d start to fall asleep Jedidiah would wake me up with “mom!” So I could help him with the game he was playing. I gave up on sleep. Thankfully Aveya woke up just in time to keep me company the rest of the flight. The saving grace was that we’d have a 3 hour layover and the kids could play in the play place and wear themselves out since our connecting flight was right at bedtime. Only Jedidiah decided it was the perfect time to nap. And Aveya was wide awake just-a-SCREAMING in the food court. After eating an overpriced supper we ventured to the play place and Jedidiah finally woke up. Must’ve smelled it. I remembered as we were walking towards it that there are simulator rides that he’s obsessed with that only take quarters of which I was fresh out of. I unloaded the kiddos and he started having a full on meltdown because he wanted to ride the little car. I found a dollar in the diaper bag- hooray! “I can put this in the change machine!” I thought. Only the change machine was out of service. So I loaded the kiddos back up and went to find a place to get some quarters. Jeddi finally got his ride (let’s not even talk about the fact that he whined the whole time about wanting more quarters to ride, of which I did not have, because one time was not good enough 😭) and I proceeded to spend the next couple hours, once again, chasing two rambunctious toddlers and trying to keep one from escaping. Sweating. Stressed. Trying to keep it cool.

Finally what seemed like 6 hours later we made it on our connecting flight. Aveya was ready to crash and I was thankful. Maybe I could finally sleep! But wouldn’t you know it that Jedidiah would be wide awake the whole flight? 🙄 The one good thing that happened was that we landed nearly an hour earlier than scheduled. Sweet! The thought of climbing into bed before midnight was oh so wonderful. Got off the plane to get our stroller but they said it’d be at baggage claim instead. No biggie. Cody ran to get the car while I continued my workout with keeping the kids entertained/contained. They decided to use this little bench area as a play place and climbed and slid down that thing like they were at Chuck E. Cheese. Everyone thought it was adorable. I however was full of anxiety that one of them would run off, get kidnapped or fall on their head. Would’ve been nice to have that stroller 😬 As soon as the conveyer belt started going I got a call saying the car was 5 MILES TO EMPTY. I mean, really?! There’s no way we drove the car to the airport with five miles remaining. In case you’re wondering the nearest gas station to the airport is definitely over 5 miles. He contemplated running to get gas and I said NO PLEASE DON’T LEAVE ME! During this time the car seat was going by on the belt and I had the baby in one hand, the phone in the other and my eyes on Jedidiah. Thankfully the entire airport had eyes on me and the scene we were making so a Good Samaritan brought me the car seat and said “I remember those days” with a smile on his face. I literally could’ve cried. Then I noticed our duffel bag going by. Crap! I said. I grabbed Jedidiah’s “leash” attached to his backpack (judging comments WILL be deleted guys- did you not read the rest of the story?! 😉) and go attempt to grab our bag. It was too late, I couldn’t run to get it in time. A lady saw me and said, “what do you need? You just tell me what you need and I’ll grab it for you!” And I said “oh, it’s okay, it’s that black duffel bag all the way at the end now.” And she RAN to get it for me. She ran! And she wasn’t super young either! I had to force myself to hold it together. After our rough day I really needed this. So things were looking up. Next my stroller came by. Finally! I could put the kids in there and things would be a little less stressful. Except it was missing a wheel. Hmmmm, that’s strange, definitely remember there being a wheel on there when we dropped it off at the gate 🤔 by this time Cody was back and was able to zoom all the luggage out to the car, get Jedidiah strapped in, and swoop in like the hero he is. Oh and some guy walked up with the wheel and said, “are you missing a wheel?” Yep! Sure am!

It was after 11 by the time we were able to take off towards home. Stopped to get gas of course. Got home. Changed diapers. Put the kids to bed. And crashed 😴 woke up not long later to diffuse Jedidiah’s midnight meltdown. Then slept all the way til morning time- hallelujah!

The past couple days have been a total dumpster fire but we survived 😂 and despite the fact that my foot randomly hurts like heck (like we’re talking limping status) and Aveya spilled my pick-me-up coffee right after we got home and I had to load them back up to go get another one I am determined to come out of this! The house may look like a tornado went through it with piles of laundry, a long to-do list, zero groceries and a ton of Christmas presents the kids finally get to play with spread across the floor, but at least we’re home. We’re alive. Tired but alive.

To be honest I don’t have any “lesson” to put at the end of this story. I feel pretty done and over everything right now 😂 but I do know I’m not going to let myself stay in this soul-sucking mood. And I am taking all the time I need to rest today.

Happy Monday!

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