You Stay Classy San Diego

523Travelling without kids is a new experience for us.  We have the ability to travel because my in-laws are retired and able to come down from Wisconsin and stay with the kids.  It’s a win-win.  Right now on the way to San Diego, we realize that while we don’t have any local family in Greenville, we are incredibly lucky to have my wife’s parents who allow us to take a breath, feel like adults and travel. 

The funny thing is that as much as we look forward to a break, the first thing we do when we get on the plane is download 846 pictures of the kids and review them fondly as if we didn’t see them an hour before and every day for the past 4 years and 11 months.  The only reason I downloaded them from my phone is that it helps to occupy my time during a long, turbulent flight.  002

We realized that we don’t have the iPad with us and reminisce about how AJ thinks it is his.  We discuss maybe watching a movie on the laptop when we’re finally in the air, but refer to it as a “moomie” as that as how Andy pronounces it. 

After reviewing the pictures, we’ve spent a good hour of the flight discussing how big Baby Jamie is getting and so ends the first leg of our bumpy jumpy puddle jump from the local airport to a real airport, you know, the kind with Cinnebon, Chili’s and people who stand on the people-mover, not understanding that stopped traffic, much like slower traffic should keep to the right. 

It is very difficult to leave and be this far away from 3 kids under the age of 5.  It seems so easy when you’re in the daily routine, especially when the baby is crying and the other two feel compelled to notify us that the baby is crying at 11 pm, 1 am, 3 am, and all hours..  Thanks buddy, communication is the key.

As soon as we got in the car to head to the airport, I asked my wife if she remembered to say goodbye to AJ.  She replies, “Of course!!”  We said our goodbyes to the boys last night before bed, not realizing that we would have time this morning to see them before our journey.  My wife elaborated that AJ, the detail-oriented genius, had said to her “That kiss I gave you last night was to say good-bye Mama.”404

We spent a good half hour discussing that, now only 4.5 hours to kill until we reach our destination. 

This trip to San Diego is a first for me, probably as far west as I’ve travelled.  It certainly is the furthest away from the kids we’ve ever been.  Especially with the baby, the choice to leave is very difficult, our original plan was to take them all with us as we are going to a conference my wife is required to attend.  We considered taking the children with us, but the thought of three car seats, or even two, was too daunting for us to even think about realistically.  The alternative is to drive for 40+ hours across the  California, so San Diego will have to be a destination for our kids  when they’re older and a little less dependent. 

The original thought on taking them was to visit the new theme park by Disney, Carsland.  AJ was obsessed with the movie Cars, Andy is obsessed with it, and it is Jamie’s birthright to follow his brother’s lead to carry that torch, too.  The expense is another consideration.  Flying from NC to CA, family of 5, and to pay for Disney parks and accommodations and food and mickey hats, renting a mini-van, parking it in Goofy and….you get the idea. 

I would have to get a real job to afford it, but then, if I got a job I wouldn’t be able to get the time off to do it! Ironic.

I feel bad at this point that we have not yet taken our kids to Disney World given how often we travel to Florida..  I will definitely take them when they are older but for now it’s too much with a baby and Andy would not remember it. 

I am the youngest of 3. I know I was probably 3 or 4 years old when my parents took us to Disney World. Times were very different back then, but I’m sure it was exhausting for my parents. I do look forward to following in my Dad’s footsteps. He got through it somehow, but I’m just not that much of a fan of gin.  I have friends with just one or two kids that take them to Disney and even though I’ve only got one more, it’s just not in the cards….yet. 

Soon guys, I promise, we will take you. 

499Our trip is only for 4 days and even though we are physically without them, obviously with this story, we clearly have them on our mind, the entire time.  That tangent about Disney was not something I planned on writing when I started this, it came from boredom and the thing that mostly occupies my mind.  It came from sitting on the plane, contemplating whether or not I am doing right by my kids.  Damn kids.  When we see friends, we have our laptops, phones and cameras armed with literally 1,ooo’s of pictures for anyone willing to look at them damn kids.  If our friends and colleagues are not interested, we will find someone who is interested in those damn kids.  We will put them on Facebook, this blog or a projector in the hotel conference room if we have to.  Love them damn kids.   

We love to travel and all the exhaustion that goes with it.  For now, during this trip, we are looking forward to our next exciting trip, the trip home to our boys who are never really far away from us.

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