First airplane ride

Thursday, March 27th, Mattie, Joe and I were headed to Mesa, AZ. We were going there for the wedding of a cousin, but Mattie was convinced that the sole purpose of the trip was a sleepover with Julia. She was packed, had a new coloring book and colors and ready to go. The morning of our departure, we had to take Jonathan to the doctor, because he was entering his third day of having a fever. He tested positive for strep throat. With antibiotic in hand we went to the airport and met Tim's parents to take Jon and Ben. They were buckled in the van before I even had a chance to say goodbye, knowing that the spoiling was about to begin. Jeanette helped me into the airport with what seemed like enough baggage to leave home for an eternity. Two carseats, two kids, a stroller, an enormous diaper bag and two suitcases--one suitcase was full of kitchen stuff for Cash's new apartment. We checked in, went to the bathroom and then up the elevator to security to get to the gate. It was only 37 degrees in Lincoln, so even though we were destined for a warm and sunny place, we still had jackets and shoes and socks on, so they all had to come off to go through security. Once we were through and dressed again, we sat and waited. The kids were well behaved, but that didn't stop people from looking at us with eyes that said, "Oh, I hope they are not going to be sitting by me." When it was time to start boarding, Joe decided he needed to poop, so we had to take everything to the bathroom to get rid of that diaper before sitting on the plane with that rotten smell. We boarded, buckled and sat with great anticipation of Mattie's very first plane trip. It was Joe's too, but I don't think he really cared.

Mattie was so respectful of everyone on the plane, talking as quietly as possible, which for her is quite a feat. She was all of a sudden so grown up. The take off was exciting and fast, and as soon as we were in the air and there wasn't much left to see, she shut the window shade, took out her coloring book and went to work. Joseph did great until our decent into Denver at which point he let people know just how high of a pitch is audible to the human ear. The airport experience was interesting. Mattie pushed the stroller up the jet way and through the airport until we found a monitor to check our departure gate. We came in at B86 and were leaving at B18. DIA is not small, so into the stroller Mattie went , Joe in the sling, and enormous diaper bag resting on the edge of my shoulder. We took all of the moving walkways, stopped at two bathrooms, got a tin of jelly beans and a smoothie and had some extra time to let Joe run around a little, and to allow Mattie to have fun going against the moving direction of the walkways. At boarding time, Joe again began getting stinky, so off to the bathroom we quickly went. This flight started shaky due to Joe's fits, but he finally surrendered and fell asleep for the remainder of the flight. Good thing I'm still nursing...that helped a lot!! We landed in Phoenix, ears a little plugged, and deplaned, got our luggage and made it to the curb with the help of an airport employee that I'm sure gets tipped for his services...poor guy, I tried to tell him he could find someone else that needed help. I should've just said, "I have no money for a tip". Cash met us and took us to Mesa for our sleepover.

Julia and Jacqulyn gladdly took the kids and agreed to babysit and Cash and I went back to Phoenix to meet Alexis and Ryan and see Cash's new place. While waiting for our dinner reservation, we played Rock Star, which after my reservation, I decided was so much fun! It's addicitive! Stephanie met us for dinner and we were seated at 10:00--that's 12:00 my time, so I was hungry!! Back to Vern and Melinda's for the night, and the next day we enjoyed the beautiful weather all day. Mattie went swimming with Ryan for the entire morning, then we went and picked oranges. When we got back to the house, mom and dad, and Grandma were there. We all visited for a while and then eventually we (the grown up kids...Alexis, Ryan, Cash, Steph, myself, Julia and Jacquelyn) went to Scottsdale to shop and eat. By this time, Mattie wasn't feeling well, and had a fever. She was left in capable hands, and both kids were in bed when we returned. Two nights in a row for me out until late, meaning really late central time, and then up early---sleeping in by central time standards. Saturday morning began at 5:30, so we had a quiet house to ourselves. Mattie's fever had reached 105 which warranted a visit to urgent care to confirm that she had strep. Once more, antibiotic in hand, we returned to Vern's house. Mattie took a nap and had to be woken up to get ready for the wedding.

Everyone said she looked much better. I'm such a good mom to know how to medicate my daughter in a timely manner to mask her symptoms to get her through the wedding. The wedding was great, the reception was short for us as we opted not to stay long and go back to the house. The morning would come quickly since our flight left at 6:00 am. I had the opportunity to visit when everyone returned for a little while. Cash took us to the airport, and again our flights and airport experiences were without remarkable events. Mattie was feeling pretty good, fever down, three doses of antibiotic in her. We arrived home at 1:15 to a house full of sickies. Jonathan was doing better, Joshua had a fever on Friday, and Jakob and Benjamin were doing ok. Tim had brought them all home Saturday night.

It was a good trip. Fun first experiences, wonderful time with family--always too short, and of course always good to be home.