Does taking a week’s vacation to San Francisco with a nearly 3 year old and 5 month old baby make us adventurous or just plain crazy?
There was a time I would have called myself a veteran, expert traveler. In high school, I made a smart decision to join the Future Business Leaders of America club and four years later, had somehow become their National President, with trips to 14 states and Bermuda under my belt. This experience led me to Jacob Landry who led me to a year in France in college. (Not that you should ever follow a boy somewhere baby Cora…)
With a well-suited travel partner, my post-college years found me living in New York City, Hawaii and Seattle and traveling to many more states and countries. Thus, we didn’t think too hard about booking trips once baby Jack came along. Initially grounded due to his heart defect and surgery, Jack quickly made up ground traveling to nine states and Washington, D.C. by age 14 months. We wouldn’t let a baby slow us down!
Our biggest trip was a New England road trip just shy of Jack’s first birthday. All-in-all a successful trip, but, once home, I immediately blogged our lessons learned about traveling with a baby.
So are we visiting family in San Francisco? Nope. We just decided to take a vacation! On the one hand, I’m very excited. We’ll be visiting a new city, spending time as a family, and be far away from laundry, cooking and working. On the other hand, I, two months post-maternity leave, and my husband, one year into a MBA program while working full time, are both a little worn out at the moment! I’m worried that the trip won’t feel like a vacation because we won’t have much quiet relaxation time with two small children and their early bird schedules.
I’ve been meaning to talk to my husband (Jacob, do you read these posts?) and make sure we set the right expectations for this trip. I’m thinking that setting too high or incorrect expectations might make us unnecessarily frustrated. This will NOT be like a trip of our youth. No sleeping in, waking up with no set plan, nice quiet meals with only one other person’s opinion to take into account. Yet on the other hand, here is a chance to just enjoy each other! We can go to parks, expose Jack to a different part of the country, to different geography, food, and culture. We can relax and be kids ourselves and play at a children’s museum because we won’t have any reason to hurry. I’m optimistic we can come back refueled (if not necessarily rested) if we just embrace the rhythms and interests of our children (hello 6am and the local public library).
I plan to write a follow-up and share exactly what I learn about traveling with two small children. In the meantime, I’d love to know what you advise!