Contemplating a trip again

Alright, so it’s been some months since we went to Denmark. And Germany. And no blog posts yet. It’s not cool – but I did Instagram our trip on @travelingwithmarkus account.

Now, back in New York City to resolve some things before planning the next trip. As an travel entrepreneur you really CAN get it both ways.

I’ve never been on a cruise. Unless you’ll count the DFDS Seaways Cruise from Copenhagen to Oslo, Norway when I was a kid.

That’s an option.

I also been dreaming about doing it the Amtrak way, for a long time. Before Markus was born. He turned 1 this past Thursday, is it time yet?

I’m so eager to get back on my traveling game. But how do you travel with a toddler? Is cruise a good idea? Is it too soon to cross country with train? Or should I just fly to Paris and get it over with?

What do you think?

Baby’s First Flight

After getting through the packing, getting to the airport, through security and onto the plane – the real worry started: How was baby gonna act during this long flight? The flight attendants had been beyond helpful and I was able to get the whole, left last row for myself and Markus. The car seat got buckled up in the window seat with him in it and I sat in the middle. Markus was curious! He has this cute sound he does, when he’s eager .. and he kept saying it while looking everywhere around him. That made mommy’s heart happy.

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The plane started taxiing and since it was around 7PM and therefor also Markus’ usual bedtime he started getting fussy. I gave him a little bit of the bottle (I had pumped, to make it easier during the trip) but he wasn’t having it. He started a full-blown fussy-attack so I had no other choice but to take him out of the car seat and rock him. He was doing his usual ‘I’m crying so loud because I’m tired’, during take-off but few seconds after he was a sleep. I tried “forcing” him to suck on the nipple of the bottle in order to help with his ears and he allowed it. But he was a sleep. I gently put him down in the car seat, buckled him up and wrapped his blanket around him. And I started holding my breath. The hours went by ….

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Twice he made a little sound like he was going to wake up but I comforted him and he slept again.

I kept holding my breath but 4 hour into the flight I realized that I had nothing to worry about. My child was a sleep and he was going to sleep through the flight. I was able to enjoy the flight myself, and got a little bit of a cat nap.

As always, the service onboard JetBlue is great. I got my free seltzer waters and plenty of free snacks.

Jetblue inflight services

About 40 minutes before arrival at Palm Springs, the flight attendant let me know so I could start giving Markus his bottle. The descent would be worse on his ears if he wasn’t sucking on something. He was a sleep and for the first time in his life I had to try and wake him up. Problem was, he didn’t want to. I literally had to force him to take his bottle … (ps. he doesn’t wanna take a pacifier. I had brought one anyways, but I ended up dropping it under the seat at take-off :-/)

Mommy + Markus in a plane
And then we landed … while he was still sleeping, quietly sucking on the bottle. Seconds after we hit ground he opened his eyes and looked around, and gave me one of his famous little smiles. This mommy was RELIEVED! First flight was over and had been so comfortable.  Flight attendant Laura helped me out of the plane with my carry-ons and helped get the stroller and car seat put together again.

Markus arriving in Palm Springs

I am thankful to the crew of JetBlue, and I’m thankful I got a seat for him. Now, I’m just awaiting our return on Flight 150 to NY on Dec 2.

Palm Springs Baggage Claim

On a side note … Palm Springs International Airport is so beautiful! Right after you get out of your gate, you walk outside amongst palm trees to get back into baggage claim. Everything is in a 60s style so you really feel like you’ve arrived! All in all, Markus’ first flight went so well that I’m excited to start planning the next trip. But first, let’s enjoy California!

Palm Springs International Airport

Palm Springs International Airport
Palm Springs International Airport

Car seat & stroller on your vacation

With only 11 days until our departure to Palm Springs I’m getting a little overwhelmed trying to figure out what to do in regards to car seat and stroller for my little one (He’ll be 3 months when we leave). I had initially planned on just carrying him in my Baby K’tan through the airport and then buy an inexpensive stroller with reclined back when I came over there. But then it hit me that of course we also need a car seat!
Then I thought of bringing an umbrella stroller we were gifted but I’m not sure it’s ideal for him just yet. I will be spending my time in California with family members who rented a car through Alamo for three months so I inquired about renting a car seat through them. BUT, this was their response on the option of renting a car seat for the few weeks we’re there (vs. the three months my family is renting the car) I got this response:

“In relation to your inquiry … renting just a child seat would be a very rare occurrence, if possible at all.”

I have to call the Palm Springs location directly but haven’t gotten around to that yet. Then I googled car seat rental and found this place: http://www.coast2coastbabies.com/ where you can rent baby equipment at a low rate. Their infant car seats starts at $6/day which isn’t bad.

Either way I feel funny about renting an used car seat. And if I have to pay even as low as $6/day I may as well just buy a car seat from an online store and have it shipped to the destination. It may be cheaper or even a little more expensive depending on which brand I’ll go by. No matter what – safety comes first and before ANYTHING!

Then going back to the stroller… Is it wise to count on a new stroller we haven’t had experience with and he may not like?

Or should I just bite the bullet and bring along our Graco Fastaction Fold Click Connect Travel System, stroller and car seat and hope that gate-checking it doesn’t smash it up?

You see how confused I am?

What do you do in regards to stroller and car seat for your baby when traveling?

car seat on your trip

First vacation with baby

In 14 days, I’m going on my first flight since December 2015. This time only – it’s going to be a total different and way more challenging experience. It’s the first vacation with baby! And I’m traveling solo!

I found out I was pregnant at week 7 after flying (for work) New York – Boston – Seattle – NY – Chicago – NY – Washington – Boston – Orlando. And then Amtrakking it from Orlando to NY. And, again back on a plane from NY to Antigua and St. Maarten before I finally arrived back in JFK again. All of this within less than two weeks. I thought I was feeling nauseous because of all the flying. But no, it was little Baby Kerr in the making.

My son was born in August, and on November 14 just a couple of days past turning 3-months we’ll be JetBlueing it from JFK to Palm Springs, CA. I’ve been in Palm Springs a couple of times before, but usually flying via LAX and then driving. But, this time around I’ve been able to book an award flight for relatively cheap going straight to Palm Springs where we’ll be staying at an AirBnb. The total for the r/t was $203 but I spent 13.000 TrueBlue points instead.

Just flying alone makes me a little uneasy especially when there’s turbulence. The thought of flying with my precious little one isn’t making it easier. What if something happens? What if he gets a little fussy? I’m breastfeeding but will be pumping for the journey, but what if it’s not enough. How to use the restroom? What if my fellow travelers look at me funny, or with disapproval? What if, what if…
I AM excited about introducing him to traveling and the many sights he’ll be experiencing (though he won’t remember it) – but it’ll form him and make him ready for the real big adventures he’ll be facing when he grows up – you know, because he has a mommy who’s a tour guide

Until next time, you can be sure that I’ll try and read all of the other blogs on experiences and tips traveling with little kids.
Do you have any recommendations for me?

If you want to follow us on Instagram, @nycandtours is our handle (until I create a more appropriate one that’s not too related to my NYC business) … and #NewYawKerrOnTour our hashtag.

MarkusOnTour