This post has been a long time coming. We took a trip out to Phoenix all the way back in MAY! But I feel like I’m in the eye of the storm of hurricane “Toronto” and am eager to share with you our first family trip.
My beautiful “Aunt” (I say aunt but she is only a couple years older than me so she seems more like a cousin) was getting married in Scottsdale. First of all, taking a trip across the country when you’re trying to save lots of money for a big move didn’t seem feasible at first. But we kept searching and by some act of God we were able to find tickets from O’Hare to Phoenix for $200. Total. For all of us. Round trip. Crazy, I know. And my grandfather very generously covered the cost of our hotel room. We felt so grateful to be able to come and celebrate with my aunt.
Second of all, traveling across the country with an 18-month-old on your lap is a whole other feat we had to accomplish. For children under the age of 2 years old, passengers can keep their child on their lap, which is nice because you don’t have to buy another ticket, but it’s bad because your mobile, approaching terrible twos, little girl has to stay put on your lap for 3 hours. But once again, the odds were in a favor and we had an extra seat next to us for BOTH flights, allowing Willow to sit in her own seat, look out the window and kick her little feet without hitting the seat in front of her. It was, quite possibly a miracle that all hell didn’t break loose.
Now I had been to Arizona a few times before, but my cold weather loving husband had not and was expecting a trip full of misery. When we arrived, the heat was a bit overwhelming while trying to maneuver through the airport with luggage, car seat and baby in toe, but once we arrived to our hotel, the beauty of dry heat set in and sitting by the pool was yet another miracle. Willow never seemed to mind the heat (as she does here in Michigan) and the pool was so much fun.
We stretched our trip out over the long weekend so that our stay was not quite so drastic of a change for Willow. And so that we could spend a little time enjoying ourselves. Our hotel room was situated right across from the swimming pool and the monitor reached out far enough to the lounge chairs. So while Willow napped, mom and dad relaxed with a beer by the pool. It was this small little reality that made us feel a little bit like we were actually on a vacation.
The rehearsal dinner was at an eclectic, ranch style restaurant with donkeys, chickens and antique farm equipment. The late nights added to the time change made us all feel a little hazy, especially Willow as she was ready for bed at 4:30 pm, but we had so much fun seeing family.
The wedding, oh my gosh the wedding, was beyond beautiful. I have never been to a more stunning and gorgeous wedding. Everything was perfectly orchestrated and planned. And the bride, wowsa, did she look good! Spending time with family and celebrating this amazing couple filled us with such gratitude, even if we were seeing stars by the end of the night.
Overall, traveling with a toddler to a different time zone and climate is hard. It’s frankly exhausting. But it was worth it. Even with the scorpion I found in my suitcase and my very possible run in with a rattle snake, it was worth it. That weekend was special to us for so many reasons and putting in the extra effort to bring Willow, to spend time with family, some of which we don’t get to see as often, was amazing. Congrats Maggie and Joseph!
I hope that by the time we get settled into our new life in Toronto I can begin blogging on the regular again. But for now, please accept my infrequent updates to wet your palate. Until next time.