Saturday, February 19, 2011

Fast and Crazy

Right before the boy's first birthday, Chicken found out she had to go to Miami for business. She asked if we wanted to tag-a-long, but I declined because:
  1. Miami in January could be chilly, there's no guarantee the weather will be nice.
  2. The main things to do in Miami are based around water (pools and beaches). I cannot handle to crawddlers anywhere near water on my own.
  3. The hotel was far away from anything remotely interesting
  4. Chicken would be working for 3 days. What the hell am I going to do with them?
So, I decided to tackle the time alone here in NYC. It was a challenge and we all survived just fine, but looking back...I think just the warmer weather should've been enough. We could've driven around and found parks, etc to play in and been just fine. Lesson Learned.

Last week when the boys were vomiting and pooping everywhere Chicken found out she had to go to San Francisco for business (she is traveling a bit more again....). She asked me if I wanted to go. Oh Hellz NO! At that chaotic moment it sounded like a nightmare.
But a few days later when they started feeling better...I started thinking about it again. I had to make a decision fast.
I put out a poll on FB and asked a couple of question on my twins mom forum.
I waffled. I weighed. I checked weather reports. I looked for suitable hotels. I researched things we (I) could do.
And then we booked it.

Of course now Chicken's schedule for work has changed and the weather doesn't look quite as nice and we are carrying them both as lap babies on a 6+ hr flight, but it's going to be just fine.

Originally the answers I got were regarding the flight and how they wouldn't do it because this age is so hard for sitting still. True, true. The flight would suck and they would wait. True, true.
Then, I got a random email from a twin mom I've been corresponding with. She and her husband are big travelers like us and they just came back from *Thailand with their (almost) 2 year old twins. She said a lot of really encouraging things about the trip but what stuck with me was this:

"I'm all for traveling with children! My husband and I say that we've seen our kids develop so much when we travel, as they are exposed to new things. Plus children who travel like mine are used to it and easier to travel with. I have friends who never travel with their kids because they tried once and it was a disaster. It takes "training" but kids learn quickly and I think it is worth it in the end."

That gave me great pause. The flight will be really hard. But you know what? Long flights are going to be hard for a long time. Long flights are hard on ME. They are never easy or that fun! But, I tolerate them much better having done them over and over and over.
I am a good traveler because of practice and "training" (and packing appropriately!).

We started these babies traveling at an early age. They've already been on 7 airplanes! We can't really stop now just because it's going to be difficult. It's always going to be a challenge traveling with kids. But it's going to get easier. And the has a beginning and an end. We know what to expect because we've done it before. They are used to sleeping in their Ergos on us, so hopefully they will nap a bit.

It's funny....while most people are freaked out about the flight, you know what I'm freaked out about? Driving!!!
I have NEVER had to load my big stroller in and out of a car, pack the kids up, drive around with them by myself. We've done road trips, but there were always 2 of us and we've never taken the monster stroller with us. That thing alone weighs 40 lbs! Ha! We've rented a minivan that we'll pick up at the airport. I feel like I've arrived at motherhood! I've been to SF a number of times, but never driving...let alone a minivan!!

Many challenges ahead. Lots of packing and organizing and laundry to do this weekend.
We leave Monday morning.
We're going to have a great time in SF because it's a wonderful city!

PS. I'm hoping to meet a Baby Genius, possibly a Sam and eat at a Libby Resto while we're me!

*Thanks to this email, Chicken is now considering a trip to Thailand for the holidays this year. She's getting Thai fever and is itching to go back. Now that she knows it can by done and can be fun...her brain is buzzing.
Then, the other day I was shopping for a new pair of jeans and after finally finding a pair that fit I vowed I would not go shopping again until we went back to South East Asia. The girl who checked me out was Thai. Totally weird. I'm taking it as a sign. I'm so ready to go back!


Crazy Lesbian Mom said...

Enjoy San Fran!

My brother and his wife just went to Indonesia and Thailand for two months with their little guy (crawling everywhere). They found it okay with one - good luck with two if you decide on it!

Calder said...

When we fly with our 2 toddlers we do 2 things: 1) have lots of baggies to pull out with snacks and new tiny toys (or toys removed from circulation for a month so they seem new to the kids). The key is to have lots of baggies, and to scoop things back into them at the end of each 10 minute session. Some bags have a book or two with a theme-matched toy, like 2 books featuring sheep and 2 playmobile sheep and a shepard - these bags hold their interest longer. 2) We have "treasure-hunts" with picture cards I make of things we might find in airports, planes, and hotels. This is a great activity for walking up and down the aisles of a plane - one by one we look at a card, name the object, then set out to find a bathroom, a bald person, a laptop, a drink cart, someone wearing a hat, a baby, etc.

Good luck! SF with kids is really fun.

Andrew and Brooks said...

My 2yr old is now obsessed with flying since we have traveled so much with him. Just in Jan. he walked himself on the plane and wanted to sit in 1st class! :) (but that Mom is right, it does take training!) I second the lots of baggies of different snack food and "new toys". If you have an ipod or itouch, some toddler apps, like itsy bitsy spider, Old MacDonald and Magic Marker are also awesome. I also always ask at the gate if there are any free seats available so that we can possibly have a little more room.... Then if things really break down, playing in the bathroom, in the sink gives you 10min break. My son loves to "splash" and just touch the running water when he is going a bit stir crazy on a long flight.

I was in SF with my son last year at this time, when he was just over a year. I would check out Zuem...the Children's museum and the Museum of Science. Our M. of S. in LA has "discovery" areas that are geared towards kids 3 and under. So even though it is mostly an adult place, those couple areas are worth it for our munchkin. I was surprised at 1yr old, how much our son could get out of museums! Oh and for dinner....FLour+Water is awesome!!! But super popular, so get reservations if you want to go.
Good Luck!

Strawberry said...

I wish you luck and can't wait to hear how it goes! :)

Libberal said...

I'm thrilled that you want to come to the restaurant! I'd love to meet the famous Puffer and any combination of family you may have with you. Hopefully this weather improves in time for your visit! I'll email you.

vigilceo said...

If the weather is bearable, check out Golden Gate Park. It has a fantastic playground!

SP said...

Well, it's too bad you decided not to come to Miami. My husband and I and our twin girls (10 1/2 months) would have loved to show you around. --I mean despite the fact that you don't know me ( been reading your blog since before your boys were born). SF should be great fun now. I can't wait to take my babes there ( and NY). Have fun. You'll do great.

sunshine said...

Ph, and let me know if and when you guys decide to go to Thailand; my brother lives there, so he could be a contact if you need one.

AdventuresInBabyMaking said...

Thanks for posting this. I have to go to Nashville soon (my parents live in Ky, and I always rent a car and stay through the wknd so I can go visit them). Anyway, so V was going to come along this year and bring the kiddos so we could visit my parents. The dates didn't work out, though. :( But we're hoping to take them soon, and starting to think about which of my business trips they can come on, and which of V's conferences we can tag along on.

We've even started having the conversation of it it makes more sense to send the kids to private school and not have the money to travel as much, or send them to public, but travel w/ them more. Have you guys thought that far ahead?

[Let me say that that last paragraph may sound really snobby, and I never even thought it would be something I would even consider b/c we're big supporters of public schools. But the public schools in the city here are SH!T, from what I understand, and pretty much everyone who can send their kids to private do so.]

Anyway, good luck. SF should be a blast!

K J and the kids said...

I wanna go I wanna go.
I think it all sounds wonderful and I'm glad you are taking that woman's comment to heart.

Lower expectations is your best bet. Expect it to be a lot of work. Expect that the majority of the work will be done by you. And expect that all plans can be changed due to said toddlers.
With that in will have a GREAT time.

Next in Line said...

What a great experiment. Try it out and see how it goes. I just wish I could pop over and visit you in SF:)

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad you decided to go and can't wait to hear how the flight experience is. You're bound to have a fantastic time in SF, and we look forward to meeting up with you for some fun!

For the Long Haul said...

I live about 45 minutes south of SF and am happy to help out if you need anything. I can loan you strollers, or pack n plays...or just if you need directions to something. Email me if you need anything. And have a great time!! We are happy to have you here!

Pomegranate said...

in spite of the challenges, i'm sure it will be a nice change of scenery for all of you. i can't wait to hear about it!

Gayby Rabies said...

Chicken's company needs to hire me so I can travel more! Seriously though, it sounds awesome, have an amazing time.

libby @ ninesandquines said...

you will be just fine driving in san francisco - it really is not as bad as new york and DEFINITELY nothing like boston (lived in boston for 8 years and only had one fender bender - i think that's a record!). enjoy!!!

Anonymous said...

Hi, I've been an anonymous reader of your blog for a long time (I think I commented on a previous post as well) but I'd really like to ask you a couple questions since my partner & I are thinking of moving on to me using her eggs. Can I email you? For some reason the link didn't work for me.

Thanks & congratulations on your gorgeous little family.