Traveling with Toddlers!

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Last week we took a trip! It was a long trip… it was a busy trip! We took two travel days to get to our destination and three to return home. WOAH!

It was my Grandmothers 80th Surprise Birthday party and we are so lucky to have gone, spent that time with her, and were able to catch up with relatives from all over, some of whom were meeting my children for the first time! My heart was so full while we were there seeing everyone!

We headed out after gymnastics practice, loaded up an aunt and a grandpa and started down the road. I was ready, and I was prepared. My children don’t own technology. They are two and three years old so we have decided that the owning of tablets, I Pads, Phones etc. is perhaps for older kids and teenagers, I wont get into it here… another post, for another day!

I packed snacks, because the key to motherhood and happy children is snacks. I packed games, books, and activities in their own back packs. I made sure the kid’s songs were ready on the stereo. I allowed them their favorite snuggle stuffies and bedtime blankets in the car, which on any regular day would be a big no no and off we went!

They traveled a total of 7 hours the first day with only one short break for lunch and they did amazing! They read books, sang songs, colored pictures, and visited about where we were going. We got a hotel along the way and it had pools, and open areas to run and play, we all got to stretch our legs, swim, burn off some much needed travel energy and get a good night sleep in before continuing down the road again the next day!


And we did get up early, have breakfast and head on down the road again!

After another long day of travel we arrived at Grandmas house. She was surprised to say the least! She had no idea we were coming, and the surprises continued from there. The kids and I were beat, we headed to the hotel and snuggled in for a night of rest, not before seeing and meeting great aunts and uncles who were also all arriving at the hotel, hugs all around and sneaky excited giggles for what was to come once it was party time!! My Aunt and cousin arrived later that night on a flight; all over again she was shocked. Her family was all together for her birthday and she was so happy!


The next night was the big party, everyone was ready, we took her out for dinner then headed back to the hall at the hotel to await her arrival, with a tricky fib she was led into the hall where she was given her final surprise, all but one of her siblings were able to make it to her celebration, some had traveled a great distance to spend this milestone with her. Seeing the laughter and the happy tears made the trip all worth it! The kids all danced and partied until late and loved meeting new cousins and family.

The next day we continued to catch up, visit, and enjoy everyone’s company, we spent the day at grandmas house. Once again it was a late night for the kids but worth all the family time spent together.

After three days of visiting, partying, and catching up it was time to head home. We had breakfast that morning with aunts and uncles who were also leaving that day and said all of our good byes!

We traveled once again to the same amazing hotel to spend some time in the pool again. The next day as we headed out we weren’t sure if we were going to make it… the news alert suggested that the highway we planned to travel was closed. After further investigation we discovered it had in fact just been opened back up, thank goodness. After all this traveling the children were starting to tire of sitting in car seats and traveling down highways so although this portion of the trip only lasted 4 hours it was more than enough for them and we had some major tears the last part of the trip. We stopped at my mom and dads and all three kids baled out of their car seats with enthusiasm! We had dinner that night with family and everyone headed to bed on time.

Now it was time to head home, after dropping Aunty off everyone was excited to get home, get out of car seats and spend the night in our own beds.


The trip was more than fun; it was so exciting to see everyone, I am so grateful to have such an amazing family and support system that made the trip go as smooth as it possibly could.

I have good kids, they are polite, they are well mannered, and they are well behaved. I don’t care who you are or how “good” your kids are if you stick them in a vehicle to travel for 5 days there is bound to be some hiccups!


  • Snacks for the car OBVIOUSLY!! But also for the hotel, we packed fresh fruit and “breakfast” foods because, I don’t know about anyone else’s kids but mine usually get up and eat right away sometimes in their PJ’s but staying in a hotel means going to the restaurant for breakfast and so having some fresh fruit and yogurts and things to tie them over is helpful to getting us all ready to head to the restaurant for a meal!
  • Activities, even if I am a believer in looking out the window and enjoying the scenery, taking in all that the world passing by has to offer having something else to occupy little minds and hands while traveling long distances is imperative.
  • Bring someone with you if you can, the activities will hit the floor and someone there to pick them up can avoid stop after stop. Its also sanity saving for the driver to have someone else to talk to while three blind mice plays on the radio for the 90th
  • Pull ups, for my three year olds who are potty trained they know that pull ups on a long trip when the temperature outside is -25C is a good thing to keeping their bums warm, and that they can change out of them as soon as we get where we are going! I feel it saves so much using them. Often they can hold it until the next rest station but when they cant its great back up!
  • Music, and audio books, listening to something other than mom sing (although I am practically the Next Canadian Idol) is sometimes soothing enough to let the little eyes fade and a nap to happen!
  • Get out, it was tough on this trip to make stops along the way because it was so cold for just a road side stop, but having travelled that highway before a time or two I know there are some fun stops along the way that would have broke the trip up a little more for the littles and bigs!

It was an amazing trip, even with all my hesitations I am so happy we set out on the journey.

Happy trails to you and yours wherever the road may take you!


Viva Las Vegas

It has been years, I literally mean it years since my husband and I have taken a vacation! The last one the two of us took together, like on a plane and out of this country was back when we first said I love you! I know romantic right? On a beach in the moon light, right before his goofy self thought it a good idea to run out into the ocean fully clothed! ( the beach patrol would have thought better of this idea had they caught us) but nonetheless it was a beautiful vacation to Cuba (2009) with sun and sand and too many drinks to count!


And then…. Petslivestock, kids, a house, career changes, and too many life events to count happened. I wondered if we even liked traveling with each other?

My passport had expired before our wedding and I just never had a reason to renew it! Well this past December I finally did! We finally booked another holiday. Las Vegas for the national finals rodeo!

It was going to be a lot of work to make this holiday happen in December. It’s a little more to navigate when I’m planning child care, packing for all three kids, and myself, and making sure Christmas is all lined up! But all that work was worth the holiday!

Thanks to my awesome sister, child care was a breeze, and the easiest thing to figure out!… Not to mention my mom and dad making it work to help out getting the kids to my families annual Christmas dinner and gift exchange! The kids had a great time and were busy the whole time we were gone! I wonder still if they even knew we left!

Off we headed early early early in the morning … I mean I was up to get ready at 2:30am to make it to the airport on time!


And then we were off! Napping most of the way there, I was happy we got there so early though! After checking into our hotel we were able to start walking! And we walked and walked and walked! I’m pretty certain that Steve can walk upwards of 10K/Hr Eeekk! We ate some great food saw some amazing performances, and gambled a little! I spent and lost a total of $6.00 I’m a big spender!! I wont go into the details of Steve’s gambling wins and losses!!


I think the whole city was geared up for rodeo I didn’t turn a corner without seeing a cowboy hat or boots! We headed to south point to watch team roping!IMG_5092.JPG It was amazing! everything ran so smooth and each run flowed into the next the entertainment just kept going the whole event thru it was amazing and the cowboys, cowgirls, and their horses put on an amazing show!


We ate – after a long and sketchy walk in 3 inch heals (because I thought it was okay IMG_5124to get dressed up fancy one night!) thru a very questionable neighbourhood the first night there to the top of the world restaurant at the Stratosphere! Now the views were spectacular, the menu however was not as worth the journey. For the prices I expected a slightly broader menu choice and was not overly thrilled with the flavour. I certainly would recommend the experience of the rotating restaurant but perhaps for a drink and appetizer rather than the full meal.


Our Views from our room were amazing also, and so when we made the Journey back (in the right direction this time). After dinner we watched the fountain show at the Bellagio from the comfort of our room at the Flamingo, with my very sore feet elevated!IMG_5110.JPG

We checked out the bull fighters only event! IMG_5190.JPGThe way those bull fighters can move is phenomenal! The footwork was so impressive and the venue was so neat! An arena built up in a tent in a parking lot on the strip! The rollaway bleachers all made it so fun and exciting to be so close to the action!


The Main Event! IMG_5196.JPGWe were both super excited to attend the NFR, the entire show was run so well! It was IMG_5203.JPGsomething we would do again. The runs those cowboys and cowgirls make are so fast, and right up close like that just made it so thrilling. We were lucky to have a couple from Texas sitting behind us who were avid goers to the NFR and they were so great to visit with, and enjoy the show with!




We Checked out Cowboy Christmas at the Convention Center, where we could have spent days walking thru the vendor booths, spending way too much money. As it was we spent half a day there and by the end of the crowds and hike I was ready to put my feet up and enjoy a beverage or two! IMG_5281.JPG


We also checked out a  cirque du soleil IMG_5297.JPGshow too, “O” I’ve wanted to see it for quite some time now and I was so happy we went! It was spectacular, the athleticism of the

IMG_5310 performers was astonishing! The timing needed to put something like this on is miraculous! When I think about all the moving parts of this production and all the behind the scenes pieces that work together to put something of this magnitude together it just blows my mind! I highly recommend “O” if you are looking for a show to truly dazzle!

On our last night there we headed to Fremont street where we found this amazing little restaurant, Hugos Celler.IMG_5346 It was one of the best meals we had while we were there! Our meal was amazing and the service was amazing. I cannot recommend this place enough!

IMG_5349.JPGThe Street itself is such a fun experience. We toured around, had some frozen cocktails, and took in the overhead show!




Las Vegas was so much fun. I feel really lucky to have the support for my children in order for Steve and I to have taken such a fun holiday, and a much needed adult time out. I hope we will get some time again to vacation again, but it was nice to get home and snuggle my babies again!

– A

For Anyone Interested –  VIDEO Is HERE