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Road trip recovery

After 25 hours, 1,600 miles, nine days and countless cheek squeezes, I’m happy to say that Bea survived—and thoroughly enjoyed—our Thanksgiving road trip. We’re relieved she’s such a road warrior since we’ll be turning around in a few short weeks and doing it again for Christmas. (It’s insane. I know.) I’m not sure traveling with...

After 25 hours, 1,600 miles, nine days and countless cheek squeezes, I’m happy to say that Bea survived—and thoroughly enjoyed—our Thanksgiving road trip. We’re relieved she’s such a road warrior since we’ll be turning around in a few short weeks and doing it again for Christmas. (It’s insane. I know.)
McKinley_BeaMe_12-3-14I’m not sure traveling with a baby ever gets easy, but we’re finding that it certainly becomes less flustering after a few trips. Lessons are learned, expectations are lowered, more stuff is left at home, and a spare set of clothes is always packed within reach.
However, Andy and I have accepted the fact that no matter how prepared we are, everything takes longer with a baby. Getting ready. Getting there. Getting home. And the most time-consuming thing of all: getting back to normal.
As our Thanksgiving holiday proved, a week of schedule-less freedom does strange things to a 7-month old. Bea’s already tumultuous sleep routine was even more unpredictable on the go. And by “unpredictable” I mean “non-existent.” We tried everything we could to make her travel accommodations as cozy as her room at home—we adjusted the temperature, turned on a white noise machine and filled her bed with familiar toys—but she was having none of it. Our poor, sweet Bea spent the last few nights of the trip waking up every two hours.
Now that we’re home, I’m trying to erase all of the new habits we supported during our trip. It’s a little tedious, but really, getting Bea back into a normal routine isn’t any different than what I subconsciously do for myself after a vacation: I eat healthier, get back into my work/play groove and stick to my same (embarrassingly early) bedtime every night. I just have to help Bea make the switch now, too.
Thankfully, Bea is a pretty easy-going little lady—and, like me, she clearly appreciates the greatness of sleeping in her own bed. She hasn’t had many night-waking issues since we’ve been home, and she seems to be getting used to napping out of her car seat again. However, with great rest comes great energy, and she’s been keeping me occupied with her unwavering curiosity and newfound mobility during her waking hours.
At this rate, I may never get our suitcases unpacked. But that’s OK. With the next trip on the horizon, maybe we’ll just throw ‘em back in the car and hit the road—which would mean I’m actually extra far ahead on my post-trip to-dos. Glass half-full, right?

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