Sunday, September 16, 2007

We're off to Maine

When we found out that U. was scheduled to be in New York for a week long conference, we planned a family vacation around it. Maine for the 1st week, and New York for the second.

We reserved a car to drive us to the airport, but it never showed up. This is the second time that's happened. The first time was when we had an early morning flight from LAX to Europe and the receptionist kept telling us the cab driver was just a few blocks away. (When she told me he was on a certain street - I told her that was impossible b/c I had a view of that street from my balcony and he wasn't on it.) Thank goodness for curb side check in. I stayed with Astrid and our luggage while U. parked the car, and we made it just in time.

This time we learned from our mistake and when the car didn't show up on time and they didn't call, we didn't waste any time waiting - we loaded all of our luggage in the car and took off for Burbank airport. Although we had to pay for parking which we didn't plan on, we at least had time to get a coloring book with magic ink (no mess) for Astrid and some breakfast snacks from Starbucks before boarding our flight to New Jersey, (and then a connecting flight to Portland, Maine.)

Here's Astrid looking up to watch "Animal Planet" in between reading her "Peter Rabbit" book.

Astrid's flown many times before, but this is the first time that she understood that she was inside an airplane. She kept asking, "Airplane?" While looking out the window she kept calling the blue sky "water", but seemed to understand that way down below was the "ground".

This is also the first time we've paid full fare for Astrid, now that she's 2 years old. Sucks big time but that's the rule. If you're under 2 you fly free, but if you're 2 and over you pay the full price of the ticket. Wearing Papa's headphones while munching on some animal crackers. She didn't care for the Jet Blue issued headphones, but she loved these big, noise canceling ones. U. and I were a tad anxious about how Astrid would do on this 5 hour flight from LA to NJ (in coach!) now that she's older (almost 2.5 years old), but she did great. She had her butterfly backpack filled with coloring books & crayons, books, her toy monkey, and the Fisher Price flash cards (pictured above). I also had some snacks packed for her (bananas, animal crackers, graham crackers, dried peaches, and raisins). And of course her blanket so she could fall asleep. And as a last resort there's always Papa's electronics (iPod & iPhone) that she loves playing with (viewing the photos of herself).

There were also 2 dogs on the plane, so we'd occasionally get up to "pet the doggies."Astrid didn't want Papa to speak for some reason.

When our flight landed we were given compliments by the passengers seated in front and behind us. "She was really good," said the man seated in front of us who was pleasantly surprised. "What a good baby she is," said the lady seated behind us.

It's funny because when you board some people smile at your cute baby, while others give you the look that says, "Oh no...I hope that baby doesn't cry the entire flight." So it is the ultimate compliment when other passengers say your kid was good (aka didn't annoy them) and was a pleasure to fly with.

We made it safe and sound to our hotel in Maine and now we're off to downtown Portland for some dinner.

Maine is the 11th U.S. state that Astrid has traveled to (in alphabetical order):

  1. Arizona
  2. California
  3. Florida
  4. Georgia
  5. Maine
  6. Montana
  7. Nevada
  8. New Jersey
  9. New York
  10. Utah
  11. Wyoming

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