My little sister is getting married. I can hardly believe it! This is going to be such an exciting week! Little r and I headed to the States to spend the week before the wedding helping my sister with pre-wedding plans and hanging out with family and old friends.
The trip from Germany to Virginia was an adventure to say the least, but then I'm sure at this point you'd expect nothing less from us. Big R will be joining us a little closer to the wedding day because he needed to stay home for work. So, little r and I did the big journey across the Atlantic alone again (but we'll have Big R with us on the way home, thank goodness).
It was somewhat liberating to pack for this trip because for the first time in...FOREVER I planned to check a bag. So I was able to pack all that I needed without trying to squeeze a lot into a small bag and try to over think what to bring that wouldn't take up space. The carseat came with us because there is no other way to keep little r in his seat on the flight, so that meant I needed to pack my handy strap to attach it to the roller bag. Just about everyone on the trip noticed. It was kind of fun that so many people thought it was cool. Quite frankly, that strap is pretty darn cool. It was certainly a life saver for me on this trip.
My son is special. There's just no other way about it. On a 9-hour transatlantic flight, he slept only for the last 45 minutes. And no, I'm not kidding or exaggerating. I'm just happy that this time I didn't also have a screaming cat with us. We had no shortage of entertainment options, although little r was not in the mood to be entertained, so he kept things interesting. We managed to lose a shoe during a screaming fit to the bathroom, push the flight attendant call button at least half a dozen times, and we also had a puking episode that made the entire plane sympathize for us and come to my aid.
It's pretty amazing how wonderful people can be when you are in a situation like that. We got little r cleaned up and in fresh clothes. Of course when it happened I was sipping on a little wine the flight attendant comped me, reading my book, and little r had the iPad in front of him watching cartoons. That scenario makes for the need for a careful recovery and clean up. Poor little guy was just covered in puke. It just kept coming and coming. Something no loving mother likes to experience.
He finally sacked out with 45 minutes left in the flight. I had to plea for help to get everything off the plane because little r was not going to wake up for anything. He slept through customs - all 75 minutes of it - and was frustrated when I had to wake him up again to fight our way through security. Both lines were painfully long, so we nearly missed our flight from Charlotte to DC. It really is difficult to take an international flight back to the US when you don't fly direct. If you ever do it, give yourself well over 2 hours because I had 2 1/5 hours and it was barely enough.
Finally on the puddle jumper to DC, and we got stuck on the Tarmac for almost 2 hours. That is no fun. I really thought little r was going to cause us to bring the plane back to the gate. The plane was too small to bring the carseat on board and you think this crazy little bear would stay in his seat? Ha! No freaking way. He was a madman. Pretty darn cute when we were cleared for takeoff though. He cheered and clapped with the rest of the plane.
The second flight was short and sweet in comparison, and little r was so excited to see his papa. He helped me carry our bags to baggage claim and then ran his heart out to this older man when I said, "there's papa - go get him!" It was really funny. The older man said he almost inherited a grandson. Haha. And little r was so confused that his papa looked different.
We were finally at papa's house around 10 p.m. That was a long day for us considering we left for the Frankfurt airport at 7 a.m. in Germany. We got settled in, little r was snuggled up and in sleepy land, and my dad and I shared good conversation over a bottle of wine. It was a lovely end to a very hectic adventure.
Now we are in Richmond and we are running around checking things off of my sister's list. I have people around me helping absorb little r's manic craziness. Hopefully he'll start sleeping and eating better so my sweet little man can make an appearance on this trip. I'm optimistic ;)