At the weekend, we took Richmond Baby on her very first aeroplane flight! We (well, mostly I) were a bit nervous about it: would her ears hurt? would she scream the place down? would we get dirty looks from all non-parents in the vicinity (after all, we all know pre baby how it felt to get on a plane and realise you’re the one sat next to/in front of/behind a baby…)? – it was only a 50 minute flight, London to Dublin, and I’m delighted to report that it was a success and none of the worries I’d had were realised.
It took us (well, mostly me) practically a whole day to pack and despite the fact we were staying with family – so arguably didn’t need the proverbial kitchen sink – and only going for 3 days, you would have thought judging by the suitcase that we were off on a 2 week long-haul vacation to somewhere with no shops or baby related goods available locally. Well, it’s best to be prepared right?
I packed for sunshine, for showers, for blustery wind, for hot nights, for cool nights, for nappy changes, for bottle feeding and for starting weaning (more on that another time), for playtime, for sleep time, for days out and days in. Hell, I even threw in a swimming costume! (actually that last bit is a lie, but everything else is true). Let’s just say, I made the most of my 20kg luggage allowance. Well, as I said before, it’s best to be prepared right?
The first thing that differed when travelling with a baby vs. travelling without (other than foregoing the usual obligatory boozing on the plane) is that we couldn’t check in online and just turn up and dump our bags then charge through security and bodyroll onto the plane just before they shut the doors. Like we normally would. No, we actually had to do it the old-fashioned way and queue up, answer questions about who packed our bags, and then we got old skool style boarding passes and checked in our mammoth case before heading to the oversized luggage drop off area to dump the car seat. I did enjoy having to hand over Richmond Baby’s little passport, too cute! I didn’t really understand why her boarding pass just said “Infant Cox” on it – why don’t they print them with their actual name on I wonder?
Anyway, off we went to the departure gates, where we then made our way through the “family lane” at security – never noticed that before – and thankfully didn’t have to try or give up any of the formula I had packed in our hand luggage. All the while, baby was happily looking around and smiling at all the new faces, bouncing about in her Baby Björn.
Then you get to board the aircraft first, by nature of the fact that you have a child with you, nice! We got settled into our seats and still all was well with baby, she got a bit frustrated when she had to be strapped in on my lap and sit relatively still, but singing the Teletubbies theme tune on loop seemed to do the trick and she was happy enough (probably the same can’t be said for the people in front of us who had to listen to me overemphasizing the name Po every time I repeated the jaunty little song).
As we took off, she happily drank her milk and there were no signs of any ear issues, she didn’t even flinch as the aircraft got noisier and noisier around us, just carried on glug glug glugging contentedly. For the rest of the flight she was happy to look out of the window,
sit on mummy or daddy’s lap, chew on her toy frog (dropping the toy frog on the floor a lot was another game she enjoyed playing) and then before we knew it we were starting our descent into Dublin. Another little glug glug glug of milk and we were down on the ground without any fuss. Phew. I was glad the flight was so short as even though she’d been really good, it’s quite a challenge to keep a 20lb baby happy in a small and confined space – all that bouncing up and down really kills your arms!
We then spent a wonderful weekend in Naas with family, who – I think it’s fair to say – all fell in love with our beautiful little girl (and who could blame them!), particularly because of her sunny disposition and the fact that she “didn’t make strange”… which apparently means she didn’t grimace every time she met someone new and they beamed at her and said hello. So that’s a new phrase we all learnt: “she doesn’t make strange”.
She made friends with Roly the Ragdoll pussy cat,
she impressed cousin Robert with her ball skillz (she can grip a small inflatable beach ball between her feet and move it from her hands to her feet, it’s quite a sight!), she delighted my cousin Angela with her pudgy thighs and her big smiles, and she even ROLLED OVER for the first time while we were there!! Most exciting, rolling has begun. In fact it was quite a weekend for firsts as she also had her first taste of real food! Weaning has begun… and no, we didn’t start her on Guinness just for the craic, we stuck to a teaspoon of baby rice,
which despite some face pulling she did actually chow down. That’s my girl!
It was particularly special that she had the chance to meet my wonderful Granny, her great granny, who at 95 years of age is an amazing woman who is adored by everyone. I have written about her here before and I was so happy that Richmond Baby – who is Granny’s 12th great-grandchild! – had the chance to meet and spend time with her, they got on fabulously well, even though baby made more than one attempt to make off with her glasses!
Despite us only being there for a short while, I am pleased to report that I managed to squeeze a bit (well, actually quite a lot) of super shopping into our trip. We swung by the Kildare Village outlet shopping mall and despite only being there for an hour, I managed to do some SERIOUS damage! Well, there were just too many gorgeous things for Richmond Baby that were bargainous (well, mostly bargainous) and I couldn’t help myself!
So let’s just say that basically baby is well kitted out for Autumn/Winter 11/12 and not just that, we’re talking well kitted out in the most B-A-U-tiful clothes you can imagine from chic winter woolies, cords, and dresses by Petit Bateau to a wardrobe essential Burberry parka (ahem, yes, okay I realise I went a bit over the top here) and high fashion stylish separates from Chloé. Okay, yes, perhaps I did go more than a bit over the top, but honestly they were discounted and it was too good a deal to walk away…. Plus, I bought all sizes 18months+ so she’ll have a decent amount of wear out of them… honest! Watch this space to see all the clothes modelled in due course, but in the meantime, here’s a sneak preview of some of my favourite pieces from the “Allegra AW11/12 Wardrobe”:
It was a fantastic weekend and so lovely to spend time with family, even though it is only a short flight to get over there, we just don’t do it enough – I guess life get’s in the way. But, I will plan another visit in the not too distant future and we’ll be back over there again in no time (well, besides, baby’s wardrobe will need updating for Spring/Summer 12 let’s not forget!).