We had such a lovely Christmas this year, all things considered. The biggest consideration being travel! This year was an L. Christmas, so we knew we were going to Jackson. However, Josh had some extra vacation days and with it being Marion’s first Christmas, we decided to tack on a trip to Atlanta. That meant roughly 26 hours in the car in 13 days. Marion was an absolute champ however and handled the whole thing way better than we expected. We left Houston the night of the 19th around 7:30, about an hour before she normally goes down for the night. We did our normal mid-point stop and she slept through it. She did wake up around Brookhaven, MS, so we stopped, did a quick feed and change and we were at Dad’s house by 3 a.m. The other three segments of the trip, we drove at more reasonable hours, two afternoon drives and one early morning one. No matter what time we left, she spent most of the time in the car sleeping. Which is exactly what we hoped would happen! We did all the drives with no more than two stops and I don’t think it added much more than thirty minutes to our normal travel time.
Just before we left, Marion had started to get into what we call a flexible schedule. Which we promptly threw out the window while we were gone! We just followed her lead when it came to feeding and sleeping, and again, we were so pleasantly surprised by how easy she was. We joked a hundred times that we should travel more, as it apparently brings out the best in our baby! She actually slept through the night (by our standards, not the silly medical ones!) twice and most nights just had her usual one wake-up. She only had a few meltdowns and those were mostly due to her refusal to just go.to.sleep. She seemed to like all the extra stimulation and she was so flirty and charming! It was a lot of fun for me to see her interact with other people and she didn’t seem to mind being passed around. Thankfully separation anxiety hasn’t set in yet. She did have to make sure one of us was nearby though, and just doing a visual check with us made her secure enough to be a little social butterfly.
Co-sleeping made things so easy, as we didn’t have to fool with bringing a pack-n-play or any other gear. Sleeping gear that is, we had enough baby related stuff to outfit a set of quads I believe. I do have to say that I really missed the ability to breast feed, as we had to deal with always making sure we had enough formula, bringing and cleaning bottles and lots of extra things like that. Nursing would have really simplified that. I am pretty proud though, that even with so much stuff that we brought, we used almost all of it. Next trip, we’ll skip the baby monitor (we only used that one night) and take less blankets (we took four and only used two regularly.) Other than that, we used almost everything, even the Tylenol and thermometer. Thanks to not having to take the PnP, we were able to take the stroller which we put to really good use.
Now that you’ve made it through all the prose, here are the pictures!
Getting ready on Christmas Eve
She’s very excited!
With her favorite present, the stuffed puppy!
We had said that we were just doing a book and a teething toy at each stop (we had three) and we stuck to that, with the exception of the puppy. But we had a good reason for getting it!
We were at Bass Pro Shops on our way to get her picture taken with Santa, when all of a sudden, her face lit up in a way that we haven’t seen before. I thought it was the big blue background in SantaLand, but she was looking down, not up. That’s when we saw the big bin of stuffed puppies.
When we walked up to it, she just reached right out for this one particular yellow dog. She grabbed a hold of it’s ear and just did not let go. We offered her a black dog and a bear, and she had no interest in those.
After her picture with Santa, we walked past the bin again just to test her reaction and she got so excited for that same dog. So it came home with us 🙂
And yeah, that’s all the pictures we took Christmas day. We’re so lame. Apparently, I’m pretty good at getting the day to day down in photos, but I suck at documenting the big events. But here are two super cute videos of her and her puppy. Again, ignore the idiot behind the camera.