We just returned from our first "family" vacation. Josh and I have had many, many traveling adventures as a couple and many trips with our parents but this was our first with Julien. It sure was a lot different than traveling without the baby.
We went to the Lake District in the north of England. We planned the trip around a conference where Josh was to give a presentation. We found out Tuesday via an email at 1 PM that the conference was canceled. We decided to go anyway as we already paid for the plane tickets and the hotels.
We left our apartment Tuesday afternoon around 4PM to catch our 7PM plane. We quickly realized traveling with a baby requires much more stuff than when we traveled in the past. We had the stroller, car seat, car seat stand, diaper bag plus our own stuff. We were nervous it wouldn't fit in a Taxi so we took the Metro and RER to the airport. That was an adventure involving a lot of stairs but we did finally make it to the airport with plenty of time.
Julien did great on the plane ride to London and we the car ride to our hotel. Once we got to our hotel he let us know he was hungry! We managed to check in and get to our room with him screaming the entire time. I fed him and he went to sleep which was a huge relief! Room Service for mommy and daddy.. no chance to visit the adorable pub in the hotel.
The next day was set off for our next stop, Stoke-on-Trent. Julien was great as long as I fed him every 3 hours. We spent a lot of time sitting in rest stops while I fed him but it was safe and kept him happy. He was being such a good baby we decided to try going out to dinner, just across the street from the hotel to a "Friday's" type place. We had Julien dressed up as a pirate for Halloween and he was so cute we wanted to show him off a bit. Unfortunately he had a major break down in the restaurant. We took turns eating while one person held him and walked around outside. Finally I went back to the hotel and Josh paid the bill. Once I fed him he was an angel and slept all night.
We finally made it up to the Lakes on Thursday. We stayed in a really cute B&B with only one problem, the water in the shower didn't get hot. It was luke warm at best and there was nowhere for me to wash the baby. We made the best of it and Julien was in heaven not having a bath! The B&B provided a pack-n-play where Julien slept. We spent our days driving around, hiking and shopping. Josh and I switched off wearing Julien in the Bjorn and we had a great time.
We had to stick to eating large lunches in restaurants while Julien slept. We are now terrified to go to dinner after the Holloween incident. We were in bed each night by 9PM after having simple picnics in our room. It was definitely different than our past trips! At least this new way of travel saves us a lot of money and is probably better for our health. I did long to visit some of the adorable restaurants though.
Julien was less than perfect on the flight home. He started screaming in the Air France lounge and continued off and on until take off. He did fall asleep when we got up in the air and slept the rest of the flight and the descent. He only woke up when we got off the plane. He started to cry while we waiting in a huge line for customs so they brought us to the front of the line and we got through quickly. Then we were waiting at the end of a HUGE Taxi line and someone told us to go to the front with the baby. I just walked to the front while holding the baby while dragging his stroller and looking very frazzled. Josh was behind me with all of our luggage looking equally frazzled. They gave us the next Taxi! Sometimes traveling with a baby does come in handy.
All in all we had a great trip. It is more complicated traveling with a little baby but it is definitely not complicated enough to stop our adventures! I am looking forward to visiting California in a couple weeks, 11.5 hours in the plane, that should provide blogs for a month!