Fifteen hours

Any tips on surviving fifteen hours on an airplane with a two-year-old?

I have stocked up on relatively-quiet, long-attention-span-eliciting toys like playdo, markers, stickers, & books. What else can I add to that list?

I will pack snacks galore, one Elmo DVD to play on my portable laptop, some duplo legos if they’ll fit, and a stuffed-animal that doubles as a travel pillow (thanks, Valerie!). And more diapers than we can possibly need, along with more diaper-wipes and a change of clothes, or two, of course. 

For Sophie’s 3 previous airplane rides, she was still nursing, which actually made life easier. I guess this time I’ll stock up on drinks and lollipops, so she’ll have something to suck on during take-off and landing. 

Am I forgetting anything?

I am taking comfort in the fact that even when she was five months old and flying back from Boston with a bad head-cold and not enough sleep, even in those dire conditions, we still didn’t get many nasty looks from our fellow passengers. Everyone could see that I was walking her up & down the airplane aisles, in the sling, quietly singing “Hush little baby.” Everyone saw that I was doing my best, so they were sympathetic.  This thought helps me feel that we can get through this longest plane ride yet.

And fifteen hours doesn’t last forever. Hopefully, she’ll sleep for some of it. And Ben will meet us on the other side, with a car and a car-seat and kisses.


6 responses to “Fifteen hours

  1. celochick

    benadryl? Seriously, I would consider one or two more movies for emergencies (i.e., 101 Dalmatians (O’s favorite), Aristocats), maybe a pocket calculator (something with buttons that doesn’t make noise), a small cookie cutter for her playdough, a new pocket size board book (we have a bunch if you’d like to borrow any) and a small bottle of vodka for you (smile). We’ve done a few cross-country flights and one marathon car ride last summer. All I can say is, “patience!” Remember, Sophie has as much right to be on that flight as anyone else. They can give you all the dirty looks in the world but it doesn’t matter. Also, a tip. As soon as you board (take advantage of boarding early if they’ll let you), ask for a can of juice or milk and a snack for Sophie. It might be a long time before they get back to you. Do you have a small bag for her to put her toys into? Also, have you packed anything that she has never seen before? That helps for a bit. O played with playdough for 5 hours so you never know what will make them happy. Good luck!

  2. Tracy

    Is it really 15 hours? Wow! The only other toy suggestion I have is the travel Magnadoodle. What about music? I have a CD of 100 Kids Songs. It’s all nursery rhymes and helps them learn the classics. You could pop it into your laptop. I’m going to figure out how to send it to you electronically.

    • elewinnek

      Thanks, Tracy & Dino! It’s 15 hours, counting a layover in Minneapolis, which will actually give us a chance to stretch our legs and get a change of scenery. We have a magnadoodle, but it’s kinda large, I’ll see what will fit in our carry-on. And, really, Sophie has been waiting for this airplane ride for 6 weeks, so I think she’ll be thrilled to be on it, at least for the first few hours. Maybe after that she’ll fall asleep.

      • variableclouds

        Wow, fifteen hours. We were exhausted after a 6 hour flight to SF! The best tip I’ve seen is take a roll of masking tape- lots of fun for Sophie, and you can use it for any last minute child-proofing when you get there. Have a great time in England!

  3. bencycles

    Scotch? for you, not the baby…

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