Wow! I just came on to post some pictures and realized, whoops! it’s been a whole month since i’ve been on here. How does that happen. I know we’re all like “time goes by so fast” but man! time goes by so fast. Hahahaha doh!
Anyway, the last week of August Orion and I hopped a plane and headed out to Vancouver to visit my sister. She’s lived out there for awhile now, but I’ve never had the chance to visit. What a beautiful place! Like, it blew me away!! My sister lives about an hour north of the city, surrounded by beautiful mountains. It’s not called Sea to Sky Country for nothing. I was there a week but I know I only barely scratched the surface of the area. We drove up to Joffre Lakes Provincial park one day to hike, spent time in Vancouver and Whistler, hiked around Garibaldi Provincial Park, enjoyed an evening at the top of the Sea to Sky Gondola and just spent time catching up. Miss being near to my sister!
It was such a fun trip. I wish everyone was there with me to experience it. I know Kev and the kids would have loved it. I sure could have used the help carrying the babe up all the those mountains. Ha!
Thanks for being such a good host and tour guide Carrie. Love ya!
^^best little welcome home committee I ever did see!
Tuesday we headed down to Philly for a quick overnight trip with some friends. Kev is in love with all things hip hop and was super pumped to go see Propaganda finally. We meet our friends down there and all rented an airbnb for the night. It worked out so great, especially with all the kids! A small shared apartment with 2 bedrooms, a kitchen and a nice living room was perfect for 5 kids and 4 adults. When traveling, airbnb is such an awesome option! We didn’t have tons of time in Philly (such a bummer!). We got there around 5pm on Tuesday night and left the next day around 10pm. On Tuesday night we got to meet up with Julie and Chris (yay!!!) for dinner. Love getting to catch up with my dear friend. Still so thankful that blogging brought us together so many years ago. The guys headed out from dinner to the show and we finished the night with ice cream and just hanging out at the apartment.
^^are we officially coffee drinkers? eeeeek!
The next day we tried to pack as much as we could into one day. Whenever we travel to a new city, we love just walking all around and taking everything in. We started the day with breakfast at the Hungry Pigeon (thanks for the recommendation Julie). We headed over to Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell after that. I love how old the city feels- it’s so cool to think of who else was once walking those streets. I love history! From there we walked over to Franklin Square and let the kids play on the playground and ride the carousel. Feeling hungry, we walked over to Reading Terminal for lunch and to stroll up and down all the aisles looking at all the food. Rowan thought it was pretty neat in there. Next up was city hall, the fountains at Dilworth Park and then we headed to the Magic Gardens. That was top on my list of what I wanted to check out while we were there. I love all the mosaics you come across as you walk around the city. So beautiful! The Magic Gardens were so cool!! We had so much fun exploring and playing a great scavenger hunt game. Totally recommend it. Right across the street is a playground called Seger Park. We let the kids play there a little while before we took the walk back to where the car was. We ended up just walking a big ol’ circle around the city. We stopped at a Whole Foods on the way and grabbed some dinner because it was really the easiest option at that point with the kids. They love eating at Whole Foods and were starting to get pretty tired and whiney. We were trying to just push through and get to the car. They were overall good sports but of course a full day of walking around the city is a lot of little ones.
Once we got back to the car, there was no way that we could leave without heading over to the Art museum and reenacting Rocky. Rocky is top on Kev’s list of favorite movies. He actually just watched all of them again when Orion was born. He would take the end of the evening shift with him when he was just born and give me some time to take a shower or whatnot. The girls were totally in to running up the stairs and jumping up and down. Hahah so funny.
Thanks Philly for being so fun! We loved ya! Can’t wait to come back.
When you travel with small children the number one thing I’ve learned is that you just gotta roll with the punches. It will always be fun and totally worth it, but there will most definitely be bumps along the way. When we were in Florida we decided last minute we would book a 3 day cruise to the Bahamas. We thought, why not right? Port Canaveral was so close to where we were staying, it seemed only right to book a small adventure. Little did we know that is was college spring break. How that slipped our minds I don’t know? but let’s just say we saw more than our fare share of drunk obnoxious dudes and pretty much naked (also extremely drunk) girls. It 1. made me feel super old and 2. made me so embarrassed for all of them. I wanted to be their mother’s and tell them they could make better choices and be more respectable than this. Seriously? When did I become so Mom like? Luckily the girls were pretty oblivious to what was going on. I think they just thought everyone was really happy. Everyone who worked on board was very nice and the cruise overall was super fun. We went on the Carnival Sensation, which had a great water park at the back of the boat and a miniature golf course the kids loved. Rowan also loved their kid’s camp. It was an adventure for sure… no naps, late nights, busy days, tight sleeping arrangements and an extreme amount of excitement for 2 little girls. It was exhausting to say the least. At the end of the day we were all glad we went (despite our unruly shipmates). Even through the difficulties of traveling with small kids I wouldn’t trade any of it.
Here are a few pictures we took and a little video we made. My favorite part of the video is when Rowan holds the GoPro down the water slide. Ooooh it’s so cute seeing her little feet going down that big slide!
P.S. The sweet people over at Itzy Ritzy made Rowan’s life long dream of having her own suitcase (I’m serious! This girl has asked me about 1,000 times for her own suitcase) come true. She could’t wait to pack it all up and wheel it onto the cruise and through the airport on the way home. It was the perfect little travel accessory for her. Plus I loved that I didn’t have to carry all her stuff! Bonus! Make sure to check them out!
We’ve traveled quite a bit with our kids. It’s always been all together though. I have flown with Rowan by myself twice but never both of them. The thought of being out numbered by kids on an airplane has had me totally freaked me out. When the chance to go to Florida came up though, I bit the bullet and decided to conquer my fears. All in all it wasn’t too bad. Finley was pretty fussy to be honest but I just found out she has a double ear infection so I think that had something to do with it. The lovely folks over at Lily Jade just send us this gorgeous designer diaper bag and it totally saved my life on this flight. When traveling by yourself the less you have to carry the better. It will make it so much easier and make you less stressed if you don’t have tons of bags to drag along. Because lets face it, you are already going to have your hands full with the kids. The fact that this bag can be worn as a backpack was seriously the biggest help on this trip. Plus, the inside is HUGE. I was able to pack everything I needed for our day of travel for both kids in there.
Here are some other tips I found really helpful when traveling by yourself with your kids…
1. Bring a stroller. The stroller was essential for getting everyone around the airport. Especially between connecting flights. We seriously had a Home Alone moment (running top speed to make connecting flight) and if I didn’t have the stroller we never would have made it. We have a double Maclearn. We LOVE it!!
2. When we first got to the airport and checked in at the desk, we asked if Kev could get a special clearance ticket to go through security to help me with the kids. Did you know you can do that? I never knew that until a few years ago. Not having to go through security by yourself is so helpful. Besides, then he gets to stay with us until the moment we get on the plane.
3. Plan your flight (if you can) for when your kids will be well rested. I use to think it would be helpful if it was around nap time because then maybe they would fall asleep on the plane. HA! Chances are (well, with my luck), they won’t and then you are left with an over tired, extremely fussy baby. It’s better to have a happy, rested little one to play with.
4. Just give yourself a break. It will be tough and it will be stressful. Just know you are doing the best you can. The calmer you can stay the better everything will go. Forget if you can, that you are on a plane with other people. I know it’s so hard! As soon as Finley would start crying I could feel my blood pressure rising. Just remember not everyone is annoyed they are crying. I know when I hear a baby crying I just feel sympathy for the parents and well, most of the time I don’t even notice.
5. Snacks, toys and activities. Here is everything that I fit into my Lily Jade bag for the trip. 1. Mini Eggs (these were for me!) 2. Coloring and activity books for Rowan 3. Headphones and iPad for Rowan loaded with new games and movies 4. Her little toys she picked out for the trip (cheetah, my littlest pet shop pony and Cinderella) 5. A few toys for Finley. She doesn’t “play” with much, just gets into everything that isn’t a toy 6. Her bottle 7. Snacks 8. Teddy 9. My iPhone and charger 10. Aden and Anais swaddle blanket 11. Diapers, wipes and kleenex 12. Hand sanitizer 13. YumEarth Organics Vitamin C gummy bears and lollipops
*A Lily Jade bag is definitely an investment piece but their quality and function will last you well beyond the baby years. I have the Caroline bag and it’s on sale at the moment! A must have for your baby registry.