Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Noah News: Week 14 (part 1)

Part 1: Our Journey to St. Louis

Well, we made it! Wednesday morning we crossed off the final items from our extensive list and set off for the airport. Scott parked and brought our luggage in to be checked and saw us to security. It was a tough goodbye knowing we wouldn't be seeing him for a full week. In 14-week-old land, that is an eternity.

Approved for take off!
After Scott bid us adieu we were on our own! Luckily, everyone we encountered was extremely friendly and helpful AND I was obnoxiously prepared. Let's run down the events:
  • Security: Easy Breezy. I had all items that needed to come out (liquids, iPad, etc...) in the car seat bag so they were easy to pull out and into bins. This way the diaper bag could go straight through the xray without being pulled apart. TSA was super helpful and put me in the family line with no one behind me so we could take our time. Noah was patient and rolled with the in/out of car seat transition great.
  • Airport: Our flight ended up being delayed so we had a decent amount of time to kill at the gate (plus, we got there super early). Once again, my little boy was a rock star. He napped while I had some lunch and read a bit of a book and woke up just in time to board. We gate checked the stroller and car seat, plopped Noah in the bjorn and headed down the jetway.
  • Plane: Lucky us...the plane was EMPTY. I had a whole row all to myself. If that doesn't make flying with an infant easier, I don't know what does. I took full advantage of the extra space (after wiping every possible inch with Lysol wipes) and spread our stuff out. Of course once Noah woke up from his slumber he decided he was hungry...NOW. This didn't coincide with my plan to make him eat on take off but to avoid 20 minutes of screaming baby I went ahead and fed him. When take off time came, I just fed him again...
  • Seriously, three seats is ah-mazing!
  • Flight: "Make them suck on the way up and way down." I must have heard that advice 400 times and took it very seriously. As I mentioned I fed Noah for the second time within about 30 minutes on our ascent. He probably thought this was awesome until he realized he was over full when we leveled out and yacked. I'll take some spit up over screaming any day though! The flight was a dream. Having our row allowed Noah to be able to lay down, kick his legs, have a little snooze, play and eat without bothering a single person.                                                                                                                     

Noah sitting like the big man he is in "his" seat.

  • The only true airplane "adventure" we had was a sizeable blow out that required use of the airplane bathroom changing table and an outfit change.I would put this escapade at a 3 on a stress scale of 1-10. Clearly, manageable. One thing that made this go smoothly was the advice I got to pack a ziplock with just diaper changing essentials (2 diapers, wipes, pee pad). This was much nicer to haul to the bathroom than a huge bulky diaper bag.  After watching a bit of the worst movie of all time (new Footloose) it was time for us to descend. Noah nursed once again for about twice as long as normal but he had no ear trouble so I'll call it win.
  • Arrival: We got all packed up, back in the bjorn and headed off the plane. Being the last one off we ran into the pilots who were a tremendous help getting our stroller up the jetway and they even gave Noah a set of wings for his first flight. I cannot say enough about the United staff and just how friendly they were to me while traveling solo. It made me much more relaxed which in turn made the little guy a dream to travel with. I digress...we got all set back in our stroller and took off to find Grandma and Grandpa!
As expected, my parents were waiting right outside the security gates to greet me Noah. They helped me claim my bags while I did a quick interview for Channel 4. Apparently they heard I was coming back to St. Louis and sent a news crew to the airport to document my arrival. I am kidding, of course. It was completely random and it was for a story about TSA changes; but I did make the 10 o'clock news.
We made it!
And with that, we set off for "home" to spend a week soaking up time with Grandma, Grandpa, and about 75 visitors. More on that in part 2.

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