We're back from our big trip (well, actually, we got back Sunday evening, but are just starting to feel "settled" again). I think the more we travel these days the more we realize that this has truly become home--maybe kids help with that as much as anything else.
I don't think we could possibly manage to fit in any more visits in a week than we did--we saw all five of the kids great-grandparents, all of their grandparents, all five of our brothers and their wives/fiancees, etc., plus four of our aunts and uncles, seven of our cousins, and a few close friends from college! It was great to see everyone, but needless to say a bit of a whirlwind.
Joshua loved having so much time to see the extended family, especially his aunts and uncles, who he thinks the world revolves around! As much as he enjoyed seeing people this was probably the first time that he expressed/verbalized his desire to be back home. Starting the second or third night and every night following, his bedtime would go something like this: take a bath, give good-night kisses, whimper "Joshua sleep in Joshua's bed, go home please." I often feel that way about my bed when I'm traveling, but it's so hard to see your little boy so sad when it's something when you can't do anything about it. Thankfully, he had the time of his life when he wasn't sleeping, so we didn't feel too bad.
While traveling safety was our first concern and all went smoothly, our trip to Michigan was still quite eventful. I usually think I've gotten used to all the gross moments parenting throws your way--there have been days I've changed half a dozen messy diapers or more, and pre-kids that was pretty high on my gross meter. Unfortunately, about the only thing that ranks higher is being nauseous (pregnancy has made me pretty used to that) or hearing someone get sick. Well, no pregnancy sickness/queasiness, but Joshua had his first case of the flu--while in his carseat, in the middle of traffic in downtown Chicago. Ick! It's still amazing to me how "mom-ness" steps in and your previous repulsion is overwhelmed by your parenting instincts. As awful as it was, I didn't really think about it until later, even as I scrubbed down a carseat, wiped up a little boy, or rode in the vehicle afterwards. (I'm sure it helped that I'd gotten a bad cold the day before, so my sense of smell was less than stellar, but even that usually doesn't do it.) Not the most pleasant story, but still amazing to me because of how unnatural the whole thing would have been for me before children and how it didn't phase me this time. Other than that hour which Lydia chose to scream during as well, our kids were thankfully cooperative. However, it's not something we look forward to doing often-- it's long/tiring for everyone.
Also, we crossed another "when I have kids..." milestone. I always declared portable DVD players were unnecessary for smooth trips, but I'm a convert now! I'm sure it's doable without, but oh so nice to have. :-)
I'll try to post several pictures from our journey later today, provided the kids cooperate.