Our road trip was, all in all, a success. The trip up was absolutely uneventful. Kai slept the entire way. I meditated. I sipped water and ate healthy snacks, intending to make this trip different. (Spoiler alert: It was the same junk food fest that they all are.) I listened to the music I wanted to listen to. I even got a little bored. But the ride passed pretty quickly, considering. Can’t complain about that.
Of course, that long nap meant Kai did not want to sleep that night.
And that he started trying to get up at 1:30 am. (I fought him off til 4.) He did at least nap later that morning. I napped a little, too, and also caught up on season 4 of OITNB. (Best that I watched that with a baby to hug, because damn.)
But we navigated a room to ourselves quite well. I did feel the absence of another person, especially when showering (shower stalls + toddlers = nerve-wracking soapy slickness), and I had to lock him in the bathroom with me every time I had to go to keep him from mashing his fingers in a drawer while I was stuck on the toilet. But aside from one incident, in which he bonked his chin on an end table and bit his lip hard enough to draw blood, he made it through the weekend unscathed. (I cannot say the same; I accidentally shut my hand in the hotel room door. Those things are heavy. My hand was swollen for days.)
Kai really enjoyed exploring the hotel. Which was a good thing, because it was way too hot to visit the park.
I was sad about that; I was really looking forward to introducing him to the parks of my childhood. But he had fun running up and down the hall and pushing the elevator buttons. And knocking on people’s doors, and taking the filters out of the room’s AC unit. (At least they were cleanish.)
The party was a lot of fun. Isabel enjoyed the fuss, and the presents. I got to visit with my cousins. Anya played with her cousin Jemma, and even Kai got into it for a bit. Plus, cake and ice cream! What more could you want?
Anya charmed everywhere she went, and though she has stopped answering to Anya (she is Sonic, thank you very much), she was pretty well behaved for 4. I think she wore Mimi and Poppy out, though. (Two overnights in a row is a bit much, perhaps.) Still, I only had to go all Hardcase Mommy a few times.
After dinner, we visited the local custard stand (Homewood Grill) – another staple of my childhood. I’ve never seen Kai more enthusiastic about ice cream before. (It is damn good stuff.)
I’d wanted to take a drive and see the sights, and Kai was antsy enough after dinner to warrant one. But there was a storm blowing in, so I had to cut our outing short. I didn’t get to see any of the landmarks I’d wanted to visit. But we had a pretty good time watching Disney Jr. in the hotel room.
The next morning, Kai and I slept til 7. He woke up smiling and cuddly. Nursing and nuzzling my cheek and cooing.
I would have happily lingered in bed, but he was too busy for that. We grabbed a spot of breakfast, packed up, then hit the road.
The drive home was a bit less pleasant, as Kai did not sleep more than an hour or so. I sang to him a bit; he loves it when I sing to him. After a while, though, his patience wore thin. He was hot and hungry and uncomfortable, and he wanted out of the car seat, now. To voice his displeasure, he shrieked. For miles. There was one thing, and one thing only, that would appease him. Which, unfortunately, I could not give him while driving down the interstate.
But he learned that if he sticks his hand up above the car seat, I will put crunchies in it. I fed him half a can of crunchies that way. Which occupied him for half an hour or so.
It was a fun trip overall, but far too short. I would like to linger a bit next time. Stop a bit more often on the way up and the way back. See some more people. Play at the park. But as far as road trips with babies go, I’m calling this one a win.