Hello! We are back from ten days in California. If you missed how and why we went, you can find those answers here. In short, a fairy godmother paid for Waylon’s ticket, Eva is still free, and we went to reconnect with some of our best friends who recently moved home to the West Coast.
We started our journey in the Baltimore airport where I checked our suitcase, secured a gate pass for Austin, and begged for an extra seat on the flight for Eva (praise). Then I got us some Quiznos for dinner before hysterically crying in front of our fellow passengers as Austin exited the premises. It was unflattering.
After boarding the plane and resuming a normal facial expression, I realized two things: 1) Maybe this was a bad idea and 2) No one has ever eaten Quiznos and not regretted it. Lucky for me, I did not get sick, Eva held it together 85% of the time, and Waylon spent the entire flight staring out the window in pure amazement. He must have said, “I can’t believe we’re up in the air on a plane,” fifty times. +500 points for the four-year-old. You can have anything you want for Christmas.*
Once we landed, our friend Heather met us at the baggage claim with open arms and drove us to her home in Tustin where we immediately fell into a sleep coma. The rest of the trip can be found in the pictures: day trips, beautiful beaches, Spanish missions, and amazing food. If you haven’t blocked me from Instagram and Snapchat yet, bless you.
Not pictured: Four-year-olds fighting, unrelenting exhaustion, and late night trips to Trader Joe’s to get tamales and Thanksgiving flavored chips.
The truth is the trip was very fun but it was also really hard, which is not something I mentioned much on all those Instagram posts. That’s kind of the problem with social media, isn’t it? If you say too many hard things, you’re complaining. But if you’re just running the highlights, your life is perfect/fake. Something we all continue to figure out but rarely talk about because it’s boring.
As for solo flying with two young kids, all that worry was for nothing. Or rather, my low expectations paid off. We got a whole row on the plane for both flights, and while Eva was draining, she wasn’t terrible. Waylon was so excited about being on a plane for the first time, that he could have gone five more hours.
Things People Said Would Be Hard That Were Actually Fine –> Kids and ears popping on the flight, kids and the airplane bathroom, kids and the three hour time change
Things I Thought Would Be Fine That Were Actually Hard –> Going through airport security smoothly, uninstalling and reinstalling car seats a bunch of times, being without a co-parent for ten days
Travel Tips Passed To Me That Were Helpful –> Low expectations, ask for support in airport, ipad, more ipad, dollar store toys, ipad, snacks, ipad
Thank you for all the tips and support passed on along the way. A few of you asked for app suggestions for kids to pass time in your travels. A list of what we use included below.
Hey California, we’ll be back.
(Next time with baby daddy and more tequila).
*amount must not exceed $50 USD
All photos taken with iPhone camera and edited with the VSCO app.
KIDS APPS (for 5 and under)
Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood: Play At Home (Paid)
Elmo Calls (Paid)
Toca Hair Salon
Toca Kitchen Monsters
Toca Hair Salon (Christmas)
Disney Junior Appisodes
The Wheels On The Bus
Sago Mini Friends
The Big Moving Adventure
Mr. Potato Head
Netflix (Paid Subscription)
One full episode of Calliou, Curious George, & Doc McStuffins (Paid)