. . . for Lauren and Lauren: While there is no doubt I'm no expert . . .

April 24, 2014

While there is no doubt I'm no expert . . .


Really really my sister Lauren should be writing a post like this.  Because she is super woman and flies with her kids quite often, and usually by herself.  Although I'm pretty sure there have been times when Lena has taken off her clothes and ran around the airport.  Her advice is most likely to tell herself it's a handful of rough hours but worth it to get there.  

And so while this was our first flight with Addilyn, a few of you commented on my instagram pictures asking how the flight went or sharing your anxieties for future first flights, so here's our experience. 

I was pretty nervous about flying with Addilyn, as I hate flying myself and have some anxiety over being late, missing my flight, the flying itself.  And to add, the large crowds of people are not my favorite.  Oddly enough I think Addilyn would be happy to live in an airport and couldn't be happier when surrounded by people to watch, laugh and man grunt at.  Walking through the airport was Addilyn's favorite part for sure.  Her reaching for and squealing towards strangers or thinking the hallway to the plane was a parade for her, was was a little awkward for us, but certainly amusing. 

After our first flight on the way there I was feeling quite confident as it went pretty well.  Thinking I'd have some tips, although none of them at all original or genius.  However our flight on the way back did not go nearly as smoothly and I'm pretty much convinced that you really don't have much control over how your kids do on the plane.  You can be as prepared as possible but ultimately their temperament is kind of beyond your control.  (Maybe I'm just telling myself this as I ran out of "tricks" pretty fast on the flight back and felt like a hot, sweaty tired mess who flashed my boobs way too many times in an attempt to nurse and calm Addilyn)

But just in case, here are a few things that helped us on the flight there, and a little on the way back.  

We checked a bag and carried on the diaper bag and stroller.  We have the city mini stroller which is so nice because it is super light and easy to fold.  It even fit on the security belt. 

I dressed comfortably and in an outfit good for nursing.  I don't fly often, but when I do I try to remember to wear layers as I usually get hot on the plane but cold outside or want extra layers for a pillow (as if there is any resting though with a baby).  

Addilyn is on a pretty consistent eating schedule and nurses about every three to four hours.  I did my best to feed her close to three hours before the flight would take off so she'd be hungry as we were taking off, in an effort to help her ears and make her happy. 

Unfortunately Addilyn is not a comfort nurser as I would have happily nursed her throughout the flight, but that just doesn't work these days. She won't nurse unless she is pretty hungry.  

I brought all my food bribing tools, like puffs, yogurt melts, sippy cup.  A handful of baby toys, which do little for Addilyn these days.  A handful of non baby toys like an empty water bottle, my phone case and the baby snot sucker which do much more for entertaining her lately.  

We waited until the end to board the plane.  I've read advice saying board first as they let people with young kids do and I don't really get it.  Addilyn was way happier off the plane, crawling and moving.  I wanted to spend as little time possible stuck with her sitting on my lap so we boarded last.  

I thankfully didn't need it but I brought a few outfits for Addilyn in her diaper bag and an extra shirt for myself just in case.  While she's not a newborn any more, she has her moments of extreme spit up and I didn't want to be stuck in a smelly shirt until I got my luggage.  

We got lucky that our first flight was right about time she'd take a nap and she ended up falling asleep nursing right when we took off.  My arm started falling asleep and was really uncomfortable and I thought it would be fine to move it.  BIG mistake.  Becoming more comfortable is never worth waking a sleeping baby, especially on a flight.  Lesson learned.  Thankfully she was pretty happy the last hour and just went back and forth between Chris and I.  

Please notice the ghostly looking sleeping man behind us.  I'm sure he'd be super pleased to be pictured like this.  

We got unlucky that our flight on the way back was about an hour before bedtime, which made for a pretty cranky and tired baby who wouldn't really relax on the flight back, despite my way too many attempts to nurse her to sleep.  If I had a choice I'd much rather fly in the morning or earlier afternoon.  

Honestly one of the harder parts of the trip was the longer drive between the airport and my sister's house, which is where the Twinkle Twinkle (or twankle twankle) video comes in handy.  If only I could've played it on the flight.  


There were moments on the way back where I felt nervous about how loud she would cry or that she was so restless.  Our flight could have been much worse, but it definitely wasn't easy.  However, in the long run it's a short amount of time and was so worth it.   I seriously admire those that travel often or by themselves with kids.  I spent a lot of unnecessary worry about our trip (story of my life right?) and Addilyn was a great traveler.  

It was sure a lot more work traveling with a baby, but really fun experiencing a bigger trip with her!  I apologize for my novel with probably no new and helpful information.  But thank you for reading regardless! 

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Denise said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

Thanks for sharing.

Kayla MKOY said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

I'm so glad you all made it through :) she is seriously the cutest little thing. I don't know if I could ever do that!!

Carol Hines said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

Fun to read - funny to see that really white guy sleeping in the background. Yes, I'm sure he'd be real pleased to see that. So glad she did as well as she did!

Ali R said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

Glad the flight there went so well! I think you are right, you can be prepared but it depends on the baby's mood. Luckily you don't have to see people on the flight ever again :) Thanks for sharing!

J and A said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

You are amazing mama!! I love all these photos. You always look SO happy. Makes me smile. And I love that last photo with her legs everywhere - D does this! And I agree our stroller rocks!

Nadine said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

I'm not a mama but I love reading your stories about your experiences. I feel like it's helping me learn for the future!

That being said, I'm the absolute weirdo who LOVES when babies are on airplanes. The more the better. I'm terrified of airplanes and I know this sounds crazy but I feel safer when there are lots of little, innocent lives on the plane. Like, God wouldn't let this one go down! I know, it sounds crazy. But I could sit next to a screaming baby for a whole flight and be a-okay.

Bailey@Lost&Found said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

You and I sound so similar- at least in the worrying department. I worry about everything! We are flying to Hawaii in July and our little guy will be 8 months- I am SO NERVOUS! But, like you said, it's totally worth it! Hopefully we will have good luck like you guys (at least for the most part:) )

The Lady Okie said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

ha! that guys is totally ghostly looking :) But she is too darn cute. she looks a lot like Chris I think in a couple of those pictures! I have major flight anxiety too. I can't imagine trying to travel with a baby. major props to you!

Vicki said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

Thanks for sharing Katie! Glad your trip was totally worth it. I have read so many blogs on their experiences and so grateful for your tips and advice! :) I too stress over this stuff way too much. Need to learn to relax a bit and calm my nerves heh. Thanks again.

PolkaDottyPlace said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

I was SO excited when I saw that you posted tips about flying with a baby!! Olive is going on her FIRST flight next week so I appreciated reading about your experience. I've tried to read up on everything and to be as prepared as possible. I am sure it'll be a humbling experience but I'm looking forward to making family memories.

I have also been meaning to tell you that twankle twankle is a favorite at our house thanks to your recommendation. I think my husband wishes he could doze off to it every night :) Glad you had a great trip and got to enjoy time with your sister.

Jessica said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

she's so adorable! I am glad that the first flight went so well but I am sorry to hear that the second one did not go as well.

Autumn Duke said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

I still haven't taken Klair on a flight. Sam doesn't want to until she's older, but I would love to do a Disneyland trip while she's still young enough to light up like she does. It's nice to know that it is doable! Also, I love that Addilyn likes non-toy toys. I remember when Klair got to that stage and... well... it never left. Things they aren't "supposed" to play with are always more fun. haha.

Erin LFF said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

Props to you, momma!! I always feel so bad for parents in airports, they look stressed and I can understand why! Glad you guys survived!! :)

Lindsay Ropella said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

haha your novel - story of my life when it comes to posts lately. I found it really interesting though! But I guess I'm nosey. :) Not having a baby, so not having any clue of how to travel with one, I definitely got some tips from your story! They may be more obvious to people with children, but for someone like me who's clueless it was very interesting :)

Have a great weekend!

Camille Griffiths said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

Glad you had a pretty good flight! Even if everything goes according to plan, it's still nerve-wracking traveling with kids.