This week is all about keeping it real. I’m trying to feel the grief as it comes, instead of saving it all for later, because later I will need to be very strong.
I have cried for what seems like hours this week over a friend of a friend who lost her battle with cancer much too young. I met her when my oldest was just a month old baby. “My ovaries ache” she said when she held him. We all laughed and I just assumed the usual momentary urge all moms feel when they hold a newborn. I found out about her cancer later, and was so inspired by her courage and love of life.
What makes me so very sad is that she has a son, and I cannot imagine leaving my husband and my boys. They need me. I need them.
I’m standing in the empty house we bought on our very first wedding anniversary. I’m looking around the room where I brought home my newborn boys, nursed them through those hazy first days. I’m walking through the living room where Jack Jr. took his first toddling steps.
The card says “I’m not good at good-byes, so let’s just pretend we’re playing hide and seek… and you are going to be real hard to find. ”
Touché Hallmark. Touché. It’s going to take a while to find me.
And this, my friends, is how you open your shipment and it is a complete surprise. “Oh, look the shoes dyed to match a dress I don’t own anymore made it to post but I have no sneakers”.
This is how it happens. There are approximately 10 men packing all over my house. In different rooms, very quickly.
And the tags we so meticulously stuck on everything are everywhere – on the bottom of our shoes, on the floor with the (rather large) dust bunnies. Chaos. Unavoidably, yet certain. Chaos.
Again, I’m no expert but here’s my plan. If you have experience with this, please weigh in!
We have a Britax Boulevard and a Graco Snugride – both are FAA approved.
The labeling must say “This child restraint system conforms to all applicable Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards” and “This Restraint is Certified for Use in Motor Vehicles and Aircraft,” in red lettering. (http://www.faa.gov/documentLibrary/media/Advisory_Circular/AC%20120-87B.pdf)
For more info on travel safety see the FAA brochure here.
How to get these through airports? The boys will be in the carseats as much as we can possibly keep them. We have a GoGo Babiez Kidz Travelmate for Jack Jr’s seat, and a stroller frame for the Graco seat.
We are checking our beloved Bob Duallie, and saying our prayers that it survives okay. We are also checking our ancient hand-me-down pack-n-play for the little to use until our shipment arrives with his crib. Not very comfy, but what can you do.
My ergo baby carrier. I like that thing… If baby gets restless I can always parade him around in the carrier – he seems to find that soothing.
Next time, I’ll show you my diaper bags.
A bagel with cream cheese, tomatoes, and bacon.
Pretty soon, we’ll be getting on a 14 hour flight with a two year old and a six month old. I’m no expert (yet!) but I have been doing a LOT of reading and research. I’ll share my plan in three parts – entertainment, feeding, and gear.
If you have experience with this, please weigh in!
In dire circumstances, Jack Jr. will be able to watch movies on Captain Jack’s iPad. I got him some kid earphones. In addition he’ll have:
- Finger puppets*
- A crayon wallet like this one I found on Etsy. I replaced the crayons with these pencils.
- Stickers and a sticker album
- A few books (2-3 favorites and 2-3 new)
- Two or three little cars
- Stacking cups*
- A few animal toys* (actually bath toys, but they are some of his favorites)
- Small Fisher Price Doodle
Items with an asterisk can also be used to entertain the baby. In addition, Baby Hulk will have:
- Sophie (all babies love this one.)
- A little blanket toy
- Grasping toys (frog and triangles) by Haba
I have drawstring bags to hold all the toys – hopefully that will help us keep track of everything.
We also play rousing games of peekaboo around here. That is infinitely portable!