Here we go…first commercial flight for Nicholas and first time for Mama flying with both boys alone. Amazing things happened to get this trip off on the right foot. First, Rob was able to get a gate pass to help me get the boys through security and to the gate. He did final diaper changes and helped to keep everyone entertained before the solo Mama show started. Second, on Alaska they will place a hold on the seat next to an infant in lap seat. This means that when booking an aisle and window seat, the middle will only be sold, if all of the other seats are sold out on the plane. Having an empty aisle seat for the bag made it so much easier to access than digging around my feet for it.
I was ready with SO many different entertainment options for Cooper. Including the ipad with games and shows, coloring, toys, etc. What did we use? We started with our packed lunch, pb&j, his favorite. When the beverage cart came by we requested a few ice cubes and two cups. He spent nearly 20 minutes pouring the ice back and forth and drinking the melting ice. Next we stuck and re-stuck 3 puffy stickers all over him and the carseat. Then the beverage cart came back and so we got more ice, cups and this time the flight attendant included a stir straw. Cooper was thrilled with the straw addition and played another 20 minutes.
Nicholas did fantastic on his first flight. He was awake most of it, but did get a short snooze in. There was less than 10 minutes of crying total on the plane which was very impressive with so many new sights, sounds and smells for him.
Cooper and Nicholas enjoyed a few moments of snuggle time while I got reorganized. It was a delicate balance of drinking enough water for nursing, but hoping to not use the restroom. I did end up heading to the restroom once on the airplane with Nicholas. The flight attendant held him and when I came out I was shocked to see him all smiles. She said it was her favorite part of the job 🙂 Despite talking about where I was going and introducing him to the people he could see between the seats, Cooper had some tears when I got back to my seat. This was my one first flight regret and I will do things differently for the flight home.
Before we knew it the 2.5 hour flight was wrapping up and we were descending into Tucson and enjoyed talking about the desert scenery we were seeing out the window.
Upon landing I felt such relief and was so excited to see my sister and nieces. They met us at baggage claim, helped us collect our items and get to the rental car location. Apparently I had enough stuff with me for all 4 bigger kids to each get something to wheel, push or carry. No wonder I was sweating when doing it all by myself! It meant a lot to have my sister and nieces meet us at the airport. It was comforting knowing I only had to make it to baggage claim before seeing 4 beautiful smiling faces.
Incredibly, when we reached their home Kari had already set everything up for us. There were welcome signs, places to sleep, diaper changing stations, feeding chairs installed and even a hand drawn map of the house by Daphne. Auntie Kari did an amazing job of making her home, our home, and getting the boys settled in quickly.
We are ready for our family time to begin with lots of sister and cousin time.