We’ve all heard the saying “It’s the journey, not the destination!”
But for us, it was BOTH.
I’ve shared in previous posts about the destination, so this time I’ll share about the journey with a toddler. Let me rephrase that…journey with a very “makulit” toddler.
We’ve tried a 20-hour plane ride before so I assumed I wouldn’t need as much and it wouldn’t be difficult at all.
In booking the flight, I made sure that nap time wouldn’t be affected or else she’d be very cranky during the plane ride. I just had to make sure she had things to do to keep her preoccupied. The good thing about Cathay Pacific is that they have online check-in. So we din’t need to be in the airport 3 hours before our flight. We just needed to be at the self check-in counter for our bags an hour early. Since we had no idle time at the airport till we reached the plane, it was a breeze. She had no time to run around or give us a difficult time while waiting for boarding.
Before landing in HKIA, she fell asleep, just in time for her afternoon nap. We had to carry a 33-pound kid from our seat until the door of the plane. Good thing we didn’t have any heavy hand-carry. Our stroller was waiting for us right outside the door of the plane. Thank God we decided to take a stroller with us. This trip gave me the opportunity to really test out the Capella stroller I recently purchased (contemplated between capella & maclaren). Bought it coz it was lightweight, one-hand fold, full recline for sleeping, reversible, full canopy cover, stands on its own, and cheaper. And what do you know, I was able to use EVERY SINGLE feature 🙂 …was happy with my purchase!
The kiddie meal also helped her stay happy and calm during the plane ride. It had a cute swirly straw, colored plastic utensils, and colorful food. Her toys/bears also came in handy during the flight. I had to make them talk telling her to be a good girl, keep her seat belt on, and keep quiet. It works like magic whenever the toys talk!
An hour into the trip, she was getting restless…that’s when I brought out my laptop with Dora shows. That kept her quiet for another 30 minutes. She was just talking a bit loud and telling us what Dora was doing the entire time. So I guess everyone who was seated near us got a free story-telling session about Dora :-).
Another thing that kept her busy were the paper cups in the airplane comfort rooms for gargling. I gave her 3 cups and with the plastic spoons she got from her meal, she was able to play pretend cooking. Of course her dad and I had to play along with her. You can see how great a toddler’s imagination could get. It was very refreshing to listen to her ideas and questions about the things that surrounded her during the 2-hour trip. This is one thing I love about traveling with kids. They learn a lot through experience and observing different people they see.
To keep her from running around, I always tell her not to run away from me and stay close or else a stranger might get her. One funny thing she’d do on the plane (on several occasions) was to point at someone and ask me “mommy is s/he a stranger?”. To think, her voice is always a bit loud.
The plane ride going home was late at night so I anticipated she’d be asleep by the time the plane took off. True enough, she asked for milk and dozed off.
One thing though that was a bit of a problem during the plane rides was going to the potty. She didn’t like the toilets in the airplane, disneyland, or airports. So she wouldn’t go even if she had to. Imagine, she also didn’t release any bowels for 3 days! She only wanted to use toilets in the house to do that.
Here’s a funny story. While we were waiting for boarding in HKIA, she said she wanted to make poopoo. I took her to the toilet and she saw me putting tissue on it. She gave me a disgusted face and said she didn’t want to poop anymore but you could see she really had to go. She was crying saying she wanted to get out of the bathroom. I don’t know how, but she was able to control it. She just started running around and playing in the airport instead.
She had a disposable diaper on coz I knew she didn’t like peeing in public toilets. While we were in Duty Free, she suddenly said “painful painful” reaching for her diaper. She suddenly put up her dress, and removed her diaper in front of everyone! OMG! we were so embarrassed! She was running around without any underwear while holding her dress up! You’d see shocked faces of the people who saw her. She really refused to wear a diaper at that time. Good thing there was a Disney store and they sold princess panties. I ended up buying some, and I just put a cloth diaper in her underwear in case she peed while sleeping on the plane.
This was one takeaway I had for this trip…Always have a portable potty everywhere we go!
I was able to get one at Baby & Co. for around P500. It’s like a big bowl that has a little toilet seat on top. It comes with plastic bags for you to put under the toilet seat so when the kids pee, it goes straight to the plastic and you can pour it right into the toilet bowl and throw away the plastic bag. It prevents them from having to sit on public toilet bowls. For that past weeks, this portable potty has been very handy.
Things our Chesca learned on this trip:
1. It’s okay to use the portable potty when we’re out. (She’s been doing so ever since.)
2. “Mommy, to get to Disneyland you need to ride a plane, then a bus, coz its far far away from our house.”
3. “Always drink when the plane takes off or lands so you don’t get painful ears.”