We are popping our family sun holiday cherry in a few weeks and I’m beyond excited. The last time I was on a plane was four years ago for a friends’ wedding in Spain. Having spent the last few years holidaying in Ireland in the rain, I’m looking forward to guaranteed sun, no cooking, no cleaning and letting the routine go just a small bit.
We are heading to Spain’s Costa Dorada to a family resort, a far cry from my past trips to New Orleans, Memphis and Nashville, but with two toddlers it’s as good as we are going to get.
So yeah, I’m ridiculously excited but I’m also quite nervous about travelling abroad with kids for the first time. I have 101 questions and what ifs floating round in my head and I’m trying so very hard to be as organised as possible. I like to be in control; have I mentioned that before?!
Lets start from the very beginning …
Our flight is at crazy early o’clock in the morning so how the bloody hell are the kids going to cope with being woken and whipped from their beds to head to the airport? Can I really be arsed with parking the car ages away from the airport and have to herd them onto a shuttle bus? What if Aidan is in one of his giddy humours and is a nightmare in the queue to check in our bags? The same goes when we’re waiting in line for security. Or worse still what if Michael O’Leary’s crowd don’t have three seats together and we have to sit way away from each other.
Now I know Aidan will be beyond excited when he realises he’s finally getting to go on an airplane but i just hope he will sit down and be quiet on said plane. A movie or two on the iPad should sort him out but his little sister has potential to be a different story altogether. She couldn’t give a monkeys about movies, iPads or cartoons, she hates sitting on anyone’s knee and is not shy in using her lungs to express her dissatisfaction either.
Go to Spain they said, short flight they said. Well two and a half hours with a one and a half year old that just won’t sit could make two and a half hours seem like two and a half days!
What will happen if their ears pop? Will they roar in pain the whole way to sunny Spain? Oh sweet Jesus, the palpitations have started already! And I haven’t even thought about a potential delay yet!
And then, when we land, what if Aidan jumps on the baggage carousel and disappears through those rubber flap yokes? Or what if Sarah’s buggy gets smashed to smithereens during the flight? Or could you imagine if our bags get lost?
Assuming we get through all of the above unscatched, we then have a whole week in a foreign country to contend with! I hope they can cope with the heat. But what the hell am I supposed to put on them at night? I don’t want them overheating or too cold what with the air conditioning in the room. Speaking of sleep, can I get pasteurised milk in Spain or is it just that manky long life stuff? Jaysus I’ll never get either of them off to sleep if they don’t have their beaker’s of milk.
Travelling abroad with kids – more concerns
What if they don’t like the food? Or what if i forget to top up their sun cream and they get burned. I’d never forgive myself for that. What if they drink the water in the bath? Surely they’ll be awful sick after that. Everyone knows you don’t drink the water from the tap in Spain. Well, everyone except toddlers that is! What if Aidan pees in the pool, or worse still …. Enough said! I’d be mortified.
What if I don’t pack enough clothes for them? Do they have Calpol and Dioralyte in Spain? What if the cot provided by the hotel for Sarah is not comfortable? Oh and I so hope our accommodation is away from the nightly entertainment and is quiet.
And when I mention accommodation, Aidan and Sarah have never shared a room but we only have a two bedroomed place booked. I dearly hope they manage it for the week at least, if not it’s those sofa beds in the living room for myself and Daddy Chambers! Just where you want to ‘sleep’ having a paid a small fortune for a week away! And more concerns about sleep, will Sarah nap in the heat? If she doesn’t she’ll be like a bag of cats all week. Should I keep them out of the sun between 11am and 3pm? Or what if one or both of them burn their feet if they walk barefoot on the ground by mistake? Your head would be melted thinking about it all!
Oh and another thing, is the safe in the room really safe? Could you imagine if all our passports vanished and we were stuck, all sunburnt, hungry, sick and tired in Spain?! I wouldn’t be able to cope! Ah, this travelling abroad with kids would melt your head!
Maybe we should have headed to Wexford for a week. You’d definitely get pasturised milk in Courtown. And their wouldn’t be a mosquito in sight!!
For some serious tips on travelling abroad with kids check out this fab post from Cherry Sue Doin’ the Do.
And do you know what else stresses me out? When weekday morning go wrong. Really wrong. Just like this one did!