Here is some stuff that was awesome on our trip:
Flying with Ezra
The kid is a champ. He weathered a four hour flight to San Juan that took seven hours after a three hour tarmac delay. I was getting pretty anxious when he took an entire hourlong nap before our plane even pulled away from the gate, but he woke up refreshed and in a good mood, and then was lulled back to sleep by the stale air and engine noise for the last few hours of the flight.
I had worried about holding him on the plane for all those hours, but it turns out he’s at a great age for it, at least when he’s asleep. I no longer have to hold his weight with my arms. He can sit on my lap, facing me, and lay his head on my chest. It’s adorable, and my arms are free for reading.
Naptime & Bedtime Expectations
Before the trip, I worried that we’d be really hampered by his nap schedule. I decided on the first day that I would relax, and give him a chance to show us whether he’d be ok if he had to nap in the car or stroller before decreeing that we had to be in the hotel room for most of the day. And he was fine. He napped in the car, in the stroller at the beach, in the Ergo. Certainly not as restful as regular crib naps, but it was only for a few days.
Before the trip, he had been working towards a good night sleep schedule. Did it survive the trip? Nope! But I talked it through with myself before the trip, after having been really disappointed when he woke up a lot on a weekend trip to Galena a few weeks ago. I decided just to try not to be disappointed. To expect him to wake up more than usual. To nurse on demand. I was really tired of it (and just plain tired) by the end of the trip, but at least I didn’t spend the trip feeling cheated that he wasn’t sleeping through the night.
We don’t use a baby monitor at home. I wake up so easily when he cries, even down the hall through a closed door, that if we used a monitor, I would never sleep at all. But we brought it on the trip to use in the evenings, and it was brilliant. I booked us into a pretty small neighborhood hotel with a small courtyard, and then spent a few weeks feeling terrible that I hadn’t found us a place with a balcony, worrying that Sandy and I would get trapped in the room after bedtime and feel really claustrophobic for the whole trip. With the monitor, we could hang out in the courtyard and play scrabble or go to the hot tub, while making sure Ezra wasn’t wailing in his Pack ‘n Play.
(Aside: after a petulant few days in which I insisted that our tiny hotel would never have baby stuff available, I finally emailed them, and found them quite well equipped. I sometimes have to remind myself that traveling with a baby isn’t all that exotic of a thing to do, and that hotels see it all the time, even small ones.)
The prospect of putting Ezra on my back was the main selling point of the Ergo for me, and it is just as good as I’d hoped. He’s almost too big for me to comfortably front carry him for further than a few blocks, but on my back, I can go a long time before I feel too tired. I love it when things live up to your expectations.
More this week: Food! Uncles!