dreaming of a white second christmas

we just returned from another wonderful visit to see my family in pittsburgh. by just i mean two days ago, but it is hard to get back into the swing of things after the drama of an all-day airport fiasco. (all plane trips with children are fiascos.) this plane experience was actually by far the best we've ever had, both to and from pittsburgh. river was happy, content, and for the first time he was absolutely intrigued by the take-off and landing. it was so cute to watch him watching the world get smaller. he stared out the window in wonder, shut and closed the window shade, read a little sky mall, and then decided to nurse and take a nap. he didn't throw fits, grab anyone's hair, throw his toys, or spit up all over the front of my shirt (he is well past the spitting up stage but i am grateful for this anyway, as he did spit up all over the front of my shirt during a plane trip about a year ago) the worst he did was stick his head in between the seats to offer non-stop "hi! hi! hi! hi!"s to the passengers sitting behind us in the last flight.

tampa has such a cool, modern airport! the kid's play area was much appreciated during our three-hour layover. 

i've learned a couple things about flying with an infant or toddler. number one is, don't be embarrassed if they decide to make a terrible fuss before boarding. everyone will soon learn you have a BABY and they will not want to sit next to you, thus giving you an entire row to yourself. number two, in case anyone still hasn't gotten the point that you are toting along a sweet, precious, friendly loud, whining, jam-handed toddler with you (you want to really stress this point), let the baby sit on the seat next to you while people are still entering the plane and finding their seats. no one wants to sit next to a loud, whining, jam-handed toddler, and they will quickly move on to another empty row. number three, sit in the very back. you expect the front to be the best, but it's not, for a couple reasons. a) you're not gonna get the first row. you're just not. b) no one likes to sit in the back, so you have more of a chance of sitting by yourself and disturbing less people (aka, receiving less nasty looks) when your baby cries. and c) you're closer to the bathroom. fourth, if you're a nursing mom, sit by the window. i know it sucks to have to ask people to stand up so you can go to the restroom, but near the window, there's more privacy, and it's a lot less awkward. especially when the kid you're nursing is a toddler. the fifth and possibly most important thing i've learned about flying with a baby is to use pocket diapers. i used solely prefolds for almost a year, flying many times with them, and they will make a bad airplane experience even worse. on that teeny tiny changing table in that teeny tiny airplane bathroom, pockets are easier. way. easier.

in pittsburgh we had a second christmas. my mom made a delicious christmas dinner with all the trimmings, and afterward we opened presents. we did all sorts of christmassy things throughout the week, like sledding and building half a snowman and drinking hot chocolate with whipped cream and peppermint sprinkles. i have officially received my proper intake of christmas. i can put the tree away now.

my husband cut the turkey wearing my mom's pink pampered chef apron. had to get a picture.

mom. devine. seriously.

the week before we left for pittsburgh, the weather had been fair and there was no snow on the ground the night we arrived. however, the following morning it started snowing and it hardly stopped the entire time we were there! i was very happy. i really wanted river to experience his first snow (he saw snow when he was four months old, but uh, he didn't really care). since we're texans and we don't get snow in these here parts (i don't really talk like that) we don't own a mini snow-suit. so to make sure he was warm enough, we bundled him up in a pair of leggings, socks, PJ pants, jeans, a onesie, a long-sleeve shirt, a sweater, a hoodie, and a hat, and then we slipped two pairs of socks on his hands since we didn't have gloves.

at first he kept pointing and saying ew.

then he decided he loved it.

hooray for snow! this is the best one we got. my sister's hair always eats her face and my brother never jumps on time. it felt like an episode of the office.

he loved it so much, he didn't want to come in, even though his cheeks were bright red and his fingers had turned into little icicles. with tears in his eyes and snow stuck to his butt, he begged to go back out.

we stayed for just one week. a week goes by quickly, especially when it is in between long flights. i wish we could have stayed longer! it was fun and i miss my family already. it's so quiet here without five other people in the same house.. and cable tv. i could really go for some cable tv right now. today i kept making excuses and convinced myself that it was okay to just chill today instead of getting out of bed at seven and cleaning the house and unpacking more boxes. new year's resolutions? what new year's resolutions?

reading the upside down edition of oogy, a book my sister gave me for christmas.

next week, i promise...

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