Is it really a week since I posted, I knew it wasn't yesterday but I didn't think it was that long!
Oh well, I am excited, for it is only 4 sleeps (if Naomi sleeps through, which she is currently doing every second night!!) till we go on holiday! We will be taking the long drive to the frozen North to visit our families in and around Aberdeen.
Travelling with a small child has it share of stresses and complicating factors though! There is, of course, the sheer amount of "stuff" they need. I went through all the stuff we took last time and started trying to think of things we could take out so that we could avoid taking the roof box (I can't think what those things do to your fuel economy but I would really rather not do the 800 mile round trip with that attached to the top of my already quite brick-like family car!). At one point I started telling my husband we could manage with only two dummies rather than six, he quite rightly pointed out that although this was true, it was unlikely to make much difference to the overall capacity of our car! I likened the process to editing an essay at university, where what you needed to do was take out a whole paragraph, but being unable to decide which one, you would instead go through taking out some "the"s and maybe hyphenating a few words here and there. In the end I am not sure I downsized the equipment at all, though I did promise to pack less outfits and sleep attire for the child! (Though I also swapped the bouncy chair we took last time for a bumbo, that definitely takes up more space!). I fear that in a few days, when push comes to shove (quite literally) we will just admit defeat and put the roofbox (or sail) on top of our already quite big car!
The next problem is one of distance. It is clearly unreasonable to expect Naomi at 6 months old, to sit in her car seat for 8 hours like her Dad and I used to do before she was around (well, we didn't sit in her car seat, we wouldn't fit!) so you have to start thinking about how to break up the journey and you start thinking of various relatives you haven't spoken to in years and phoning them up to ask if you can stop in for a cup of coffee or even to stay the night so the child can chill out for a bit. Last time we travelled Naomi was only on breastmilk, getting food into her that way didn't take all that long and wasn't all that messy, this time we will need to think about how and when and where we can shovel some mush into her every few hours too!
The car has another issue too, if Naomi starts to cry on the motorway (which is inevitible, she hates the car and we spend a lot of time on the motorway) there is nothing you can do, you can't pick her up, you can't shove my boob in her mouth (I wish I could find a way) and if you have bravely sat in the front you can't even get into the back to tell her it will all be okay. I feel like motorways are places of stress for me, I am examining every sign to see how far it is to the next service station and then you have to decide whether to gamble on her making it to the next one or do you stop now, thus lengthening the journey even further!
I am very excited for my holiday, it will be great to see family and friends again, but please won't someone invent a teleportation device, I find myself dreading the thought of the drive!