On the way back, we had to fly back to Barcelona from Valladolid, then from Barcelona to Frankfurt, Germany, and then an 8 hour 20 minute flight back to Chicago. Yikes!!!! Even now, I can't believe that we did all of that!
Evie had never flown before this trip. I know, I know...I like to start with the high ropes course. I was as prepared as I thought I could be: plenty of diaper, snacks, entertainment options, etc. Of course, none of those things will work when you're dealing with a fussy toddler, but Evie was a trooper, and I learned a lot about my own levels of patience.
|At El Parque Güell in Barcelona|
A few things helped us more than I thought they would though. First of all, when flying for extended periods of time with a toddler, tiring them out at the airport is key. We ran Evie from one of the terminal to other during each layover. It worked well for us on our way to Barcelona: she slept for 6.5 hours of the 7.5 hour flight! On the way back, we had less luck, but we tried our best. Fortunately, she wasn't too fussy and I was able to walk around the cabin of the plane for most of the flight. I don't know what I would have done if there had been more turbulence...
Second, I never would have believed in the kindness of strangers to entertain my child. From the soon-to-be grandma on our first flight who played peek-a-boo with Evie for at least half an hour, to the elderly Spanish grandma of 5 who held Evie for an hour of the train ride to the beach, it seemed like everyone was understanding of fussy babies and willing to help out if they could. I will remember to pay this forward!!!
|With my dad in the Plaza Mayor of Valladolid|
It wasn't all easy. I had to hold Evie for about 16 hours straight on the way back because she refused to go by my dad, or go in her stroller in the Frankfurt airport. Trying to entertain her on the long flight from Frankfurt to Chicago was tough too. But really, the whole ordeal was better than I thought it would be.
Have you flown with your child? How did it go? Do you have any tips for me in the future?