tuesday (2/7) - a 2 hour flight (to philly), a 1 hour layover, and a 2.5 hour flight (to orlando). not our desired way to do it (money chose for us, in the end), but it probably couldnt have gone any smoother than it did. X didnt nap but she didnt ask to nurse on the flights (a win since she has been day-weaned at home for a while, but i was wondering what she would do on the plane...she didnt even ask. weaning seems well on its way to completion).
our second flight was absolutely packed! it boggles the mind the amount of people who flood in to florida in the winter. the girl in front of us was 12 years old and from the UK. she was on her first trip to the u.s. headed to disney on holiday. she was very sweet and excited. to balance that loveliness, behind us we had two self-absorbed parents of teenagers talking about how gifted their kids were in sports. i wanted to slap them.
we landed in orlando, got our rental car and got to our hotel (we stayed at a hotel by the airport that night because we got in at dinnertime and didnt want to do anymore traveling). after X went to bed, dave went out to chipotle for dinner for us but we tried to feed X with just the food we had with us (brought from halifax). she went to bed easily, but woke up at 5a hungry (asking for banana bread. lol). thankfully we still had some pasta and shoved that in her face and she went back to sleep.
wednesday (2/8) - ate breakfast and drove out to indialantic (where my mom lives). hung out at moms (and als), and daves parents came over (they had traveled down to attend my moms wedding too, and to see X). X took a few minutes to adjust to all the people and the new surroundings, and then was her normal self. we had sandwiches for lunch. muenster cheese was bought and i was unable to resist. i crammed 3 slices into my face (and thus i embarked on my experiment to see how long lactose stays in breast milk...). for dinner, dave made pork tenderloin for several people (other wedding guests were already coming in to town) and then he went off to play a local pick-up game of ultimate frisbee. X went to bed easily (despite telling me her tummy hurt) and slept the whole night in her own bed, in a hotel! wonders never cease.
thursday (2/9) - hung out with daves parents, then dropped X at moms so dave and i could have a date. went for sushi, a new-to-us place called thai thai 2. i got sushi with cream cheese (more dairy!). and i also had a wine cooler. blah! fowl. never again. i just thought i could maybe get a tiny buzz and relax a little. nope. also, having dairy on my taste buds again has been pleasant, but im not at all feeling an urge to gorge, which is probably great.
after our date, we walked from moms to the playground down the street. X climbed like a maniac. then we walked on the beach. it was breezy and cool and X wasnt as motivated to run in to the water as last time. she was curious about the sand moving under her feet when the waves went back to the ocean. i forgot that it would be a good idea to hold her hand (last time we were here, she wasnt solo walking yet, so we definitely were holding her hands), so she fell in water, but we had a fun time (though she may be a little spooked of falling in the water now). she also learned to spot pelicans.
(X climbing at the playground; standing in the water)
back at the hotel, we had Xs first red butt poop of the trip (aka, we gave her something that hurt her stomach), but this was still considered a pretty big success for us, normally everyday of a trip shows us some error of our X feeding ways. we made it two days in to this trip without being meanies this time.
friday (2/10) - ugh, more food issues abound. we got bagels this morning, which seemed to piss her off. we spent a bit of time with daves mom in the hotel room and then headed over to my moms house to change the scenery. we had lunch there by ourselves (mom and al were out) and then tried to get back to the hotel and take advantage of the unexpected sunshine. wrong. it started raining as soon as a toe was dipped into the pool. :( we got X dressed and went to a local indoor play place. she was hungry from not eating a good lunch (this happens when her stomach gets too irritated) so she was a little testy while playing with other kids at first, but she seemed to really like the space and we were happy to have found it on a rainy day. upon leaving, she got dozy in the car on the way to the grocery store and was a bit grumpy (yet she hasnt actually been taking short naps here, even if we provide the time and opportunity). but, we made it through the grocery store and got back to my moms house with food for dinner. by now, she was raging hungry and acting bratty. it was all i could do to wrangle some food in her without losing my shit. she ate a small dinner after all was said and done and then proceeded to crumble like her stomach hurt again. what the hell had we given her? she pooped a million times, most of those making her butt red and i was tired of feeling like a failure, and definitely tired of hearing her whining. we barely made it to bed time alive, but we finally heard some silence at 8p. a really early bedtime. today was a pretty big fail.
(she didnt seem annoyed by the rain. she had her feet dipped in to the hot tub and was happy as a clam)
saturday (2/11) - X had a morning cry fit due to a memory of grandpa (daves dad) being "scary" (the fit lasted 30+ minutes). as the fit was winding down, we got in the car to go to the zoo with grandma and grandpa. while boarding the zoo train, i saw a girl i swam with in high school and her two kids (random). after the train, we did half of the zoo: the aviary and african animal areas. fed nectar to some parrots and seeds to some cockatoos (dave got pooped on). X liked seeing the birds land on people. then we saw the cheetah and rhino and giraffes. she loved that. and then it was lunch time and we headed back to my moms.
dave went to get groceries for the rehearsal dinner he was cooking/catering and X and i went to the playground, the beach, back to the hotel and back to my moms in time for people to start arriving. i helped dave cook while X mingled. she had another cry fit from another memory of a boy at the party having previously scared her (ugh, this seems to be a new and lovely thing she has started: strong cry-inducing memories that cannot be calmed down). dinner went well, we met lots of als friends and family. dave cooked too much food, but at least it all tasted great.
(happiness on the zoo train!; feeding nectar to the parrots)
(climbing at the playground again; beach walking, she would only get close to the waterline if i drew a line in the sand to follow)
sunday (2/12) - wedding day. my mom and others got ready in our hotel room. not surprisingly, my mom was emotional (she didnt have a real wedding wedding to my dad, this was her first crack at being a true bride), but everything went off smoothly from my point of view even though the weather was the chilliest day the florida winter had yet seen i think. the guests were in coats in the covered tent for the ceremony, but the vows were sweet enough to warm the cold bodies (i think my favorite part was al expressing the sentiment that they were in the autumn of their lives, etc). we threw some ceremonial seashells into the ocean and ran back inside to get warm.
(the blushing bride and happy groom; dave and X)
the reception room was nicely decorated, the brunch was fantastic and i gorged on cheese and desserts as far as my eye could see. i even had a mimosa (the dairy and booze consuming felt a little like what someone who "fell off the wagon" must feel like. i was compelled to continue through sheer momentum, not even through desire. it kinda made me cringe afterward). if dave ever dies on me (please dont though) i would want to get remarried in a laid back brunch wedding like this. X ran around like crazy with the other kiddos and then we came up to the room for some much needed quiet time. later we hit the grocery store, where X actually took a nap (a 5 minute nap). then went to my moms for a leftovers dinner. we didnt realize that half of the wedding guests would be back over there too.
monday (2/13) - had our last visit with daves parents. last visit with mom and al (X gained a nice scrape on her forehead). then we packed up and headed back to orlando (stayed in an airport hotel again). X went to bed early. we seem to have tired her way out on this trip and messed her sleep up so much that she was going to bed early, which was fine tonight especially because we had to get up early for the flight.
(cuteness on the playground)
tuesday (2/14) - got up and to the airport no problem. our flight to philly was packed again but went smoothly. we had a few hours in the philly airport, but we passed them successfully. then we got on our halifax flight. the flight went well, but whenever we take these smaller flights, we seem to get all the safety sally flight attendants who explain to us that X needs to be belted in at all times during the flight because "if we hit a bit of turbulence, she could fly right up to the ceiling and bump her head". yes, i understand that, but you do realize the child would scream the entire flight if she was restrained like that for 2 hours? while she regaled me with safety tips throughout the flight, i also had to listen to dip shit numero uno in front of us asking the flight attendant (repeatedly) which state we were flying over, asking about the weather in halifax, lamenting the policy the u.s. has of only allowing canadians to stay in the u.s. for 180 days out of every year before they have to go back to canada, asking which caribbean island would be best for people who "like nature", and chatting the flight attendant up about her recent ukelele purchase (and then strumming said ukelele for a bit!). i wanted to punch the guy.
travel reflections - the hotel room with fridge and microwave, plus a rental car and close proximity to a person with a kitchen proved to make this the smoothest food trip yet. it would have been nearly perfect if i hadnt tested out my capabilities of eating dairy (note to self: lactose doesnt seem to filter out of breastmilk like alcohol does [one drink per hour]. i stopped eating dairy 5+ hours before bedtime and it was still bothering her).
closing remarks - congrats mom and al. we had a really nice visit, and i know X did too. we were happy to be able to travel down and join you on your special day. its wonderful that you two were able to find each other and know happiness again. im glad to have you in my life and i know X is a lucky girl to have your love.