We recently took out first vacation as a family of 4. We had traveled to NY and LA with the kids separately so this was a new adventure for us! We visited my brother and his family in LA for several days. Our big concern was how Amber would do on the airplane. I flew with her back in May when she was 8 months old and it was tough. She did not want ot sit still and I had to put on quite the dog and pony show to keep her entertained. I was worried because she is now several months older and really hates to sit still.
We knew if we provided Nathan with books and a DVD player he would be fine.
We got to the airport pretty early and ended up walking right through security; therefore we had some time to kill before we boarded. Nathan looked so cute walking around holding mickey and pulling his Thomas the Train rolling backpack. He did not want to put the backpack down!
The kids did pretty well on the plane. Luckily it was not a full flight, so no one was sitting in front of Nathan to complain about him raising and lowering the tray over and over.
Amber fell asleep for about an hour and really did pretty good for the majority of the flight. As long as she had her lovie and paci she was easily calmed.
She is really into books right now, so she was content reading them over and over. This is the 1st time I have flown with Nathan since we had to buy him his own seat (He has flown with my mom a few times in the past year) and it was much better than when he had to sit in my lap!
He is really into Mater (from Cars) right now, which is humerus because he has never seen the movie before. He has several books about Mater,so we figure that is where his fascination comes from about Mater. Anyways, our plan was to let him watch Cars for the 1st time on the plane. He has never seen a "real" full length movie before, he only watches Veggie Tales, Clifford or Mickey Mouse. We figured this would be a huge treat and keep him occupied for most of the flight.
I had brought popcorn for us to munch on the plane and that was by far his favorite part of the flight. (once we were in the air and he could not see airplanes anymore)
Below is the last picture on my camera before it met its end. Thankfully, my sweet sister in law had an extra camera I was able to have so I could continue to take pictures!
Nathan is into truck of all varieties right now, especially the trash truck, so he was quit mesmerized by the cement truck!
After the cement "show" we headed to the park.
Maeva and Nathan rode in the jump seats that are in the back of my brothers Tessla. They had 5 point restraints, and were riding backwards, so I feel it was much safer than a car-seat. He had them specially added to the car and I think they are a nice touch!!!!!
Maeva insisted Nathan needed sunscreen, and that she should be the one to apply it! It was adorable!!!
Of course, he needed some on the back of his neck too! He stood very still for her to grease him up.
Last year, Nathan rode the walking only pony but we could tell he wanted to ride the fast ones (that was Dan's assessment!!). Maeva was not fond of any of the horses last year.
This year they both were so big and brave. We fudged a little on their ages so they got to ride the fast ponies! They loved it! Maeva's head just bobbed up and down!
Maeva did look little next to all the "big" kids who were riding the fast ponies! After the Pony's we rode the little train. We wanted to play on the big playground afterwards, but it was pretty hot outside.
Amber got to ride the ponies too!
On Sunday, we went back to the beach, since it was evident my child really wanted to play in the ocean! We drove to Santa Monica beach and played in the water and sand for awhile! Nathan loved the ocean. I was afraid he was going to have a big meltdown when it was time to leave, but thank goodness he was pretty cold from the water so he more than happy to be wrapped in a towel! He ran in and out the water, over and over again! He was so happy!
Maeva loved being in the water as well. It was fun to watch the 2 dad's with their kids out in the ocean!!
Amber enjoyed the beach, however her favorite part was eating the sand!! She and her aunt enjoyed sitting under the umbrella playing with sand toys!
I did let Amber put her feet in the ocean but I was afraid it was too cold for her to be totally immersed. When I put her down on the sand she took off crawling right into the water! What is with my 2 kids??? Do either one of them understand the high drowning risk of just taking off into the water? Although, I am thankful they do not fear the water!
Amber got mad at Uncle Joseph because he was trying to prevent her from snacking on the sand.
This was our only family photo of the whole trip. Oh well, at least we got 1!
A little cousin down time after a busy morning at the beach! They both were in a little Veggie Tale trance.
Amber says "Wait, I want to watch too, and I want to hold the DVD player all by myself while chewing on the screen". Needless to say, she got evicted from the movie watching party!
On Monday morning we said good-bye and headed to the airport. Aunt Lorraine and Maeva left early for work and school and then my brother took us to the airport....in LA rush hour traffic, BLESS him!
I tried standing on my head while dancing to get them all to smile for a cousin picture, but at least they were all looking at the camera!
Overall, we had such a fun and successful 1st family vacation. I look forward to the many more vacations and travels that we will make together as a family!