Sunday, February 19, 2012

Leaving {My Toddler} On A Jet Plane {For The First Time} ...

What, those aren't the words to that song? Crap. Well, those are the exact words I've been singing these past few days as I began getting ready for my trip to Nashville next week. Did I mention I'm leaving in four days? I am. And I'm trying not to think too much about the "going away" part. Why? Because, Loyals, it will be the first time I've ever left Carter over night. Ever. In his whole entire short little 19 month life. 

I know. We'll be fine. He'll be fine. I'll be fine. It's healthy. I get it. But that doesn't mean that I'm not internally fah-reaking the heck out. 

Can I let you all in on a little secret? I'm a control freak and Carter is my full-time job. That means every single waking second (and sleeping, for that matter) of every single day is consumed by my thoughts of, "Routine!" "Is he eating enough?" "Did he nap long enough?" "Why isn't he napping at all?" "Did we work on letters today?" "Numbers?" "Spanish/French/German/Mandarin?" "Routine!" "Routine!" "Did we play enough?" Etc. 

Together, Carter and I, have worked long and hard to establish our routine. It certainly didn't happen over night and within the last few months it has become a true staple in each of our lives. Lord knows we both lose our shit if The Routine hits a bump in the road. 

So the thought of leaving The Toddler in the {very} capable hands of my husband and my parents kind of, sort of gives me The Freakouts. 

Thankfully, I know the both of them so well that if and when The Routine isn't followed, they certainly aren't going to tell me. They're going to let me continue on my merry little way of thinking that they've followed every single little sign, post-it and letterhead note that I've left for them around the house to an absolute "T." 

In case you needed proof of my control freak nature, I now present to you Exhibit A:

Now, don't be fooled Loyals. This sucker has been laminated and is tacked to our fridge and I may or may not have laminated a second copy to leave for my parents in the guest room. Do you think it's a bit much if I include a copy in the guest bath as well? Let's just say they're lucky that I ran out of room for sub letters when I drew this up. And for those of you saw my tweet and have asked/emailed where I made this? The answer is I simply uploaded a blank MS Paint document and added in the text. 

So, like I mentioned earlier, I'm leaving my son for four days in the {very} capable hands of both my husband, clearly the child's father and my parents, two brilliant individuals who have successfully raised two incredible children. 

What am I so worried about?

I can't help but think to myself, "They won't know how to tuck him in at night!" "Will they remember to add glow sticks to his bath?" "What about his meals? They won't forget to give him milk or juice, right?" "Do they even know that juice only goes in the straw cups and milk in the sippy?"

I'm sure you're laughing and yes, the truth is that this IS slightly comical, but it's the truth nonetheless. These are the things keeping me up at night. 

The girls I'll be joining in Nashville for Blissdom have some serious work in store for them. They may not know it yet, but I'm counting on them to occupy and entertain me enough that I don't for a single second think about turning around and getting right back on a plane to Maryland. No pressure, right? 

Of course, I would be lying if I said I wasn't looking forward to some adult conversation. Some Me-Time. Some time away from the Toddler without having to constantly worry about Routines, Meal Times, Activities and Stimulation. I'm absolutely excited for that. Remember, I AM human after all. 

So, what will C be doing while Mama is away? Hopefully coping beautifully with my brief absence, sleeping late and behaving like the little wildebeest angel that we all know he is. 

With hopes of softening the blow, I thought I'd put together some little gift bags and boxes for C to tear into each day that I'm away. Something that, if only for a few minutes, will redirect his attention from the fact that his mother is off galavanting in Tennessee without him. 

So, where did I turn to? The dollar bins at Target, of course.  Literally a Toddler's heaven. For less than $30 with a few additional non-dollar-bin items thrown in, I was able to turn this stash.... 

... into these darling little bags chock full of books, crayons, coloring books, balls, bath time glow sticks, animal cracker snacks and more! All I have left to do is tag them with their special "Open Me" day and add in a little note to my sweet C. Not too shabby!

Now that C's activity bags are taken care of, that's one more thing I can cross off of my "Blissdom Prep" to-do list. 

Tell me I'm not alone, Loyals? I'm not being completely irrational, am I? I'm leaving my baby over night for the FIRST time EVER. 

Cue The Freakouts. 

I'll be taking a step back from blogging these next couple of days in order to soak up an inordinate amount of Toddler Snuggles and finish packing what I'm sure {but have no idea if I'll truly need} for Blissdom. Don't fret- I'll be back on Wednesday with a sort of All About AP post and in the mean time, you'll hear from not one but two of my most favorite bloggers, ever! 

Happy Sunday, Loyals. Thanks for listening!



  1. You are such a good mommy AP. Love the cute little bags. What a great idea.

    I hope you can enjoy yourself at Blissdom. So glad you will be able to have some "me" time.

  2. I have never left S for more than a few minutes. I think , in fact I know, I would be feeling the same exact ways! Good luck girl!

  3. I love the gift bag idea, but my guess is Carter will be like most toddlers and not realize you're away. (Based on my experience as a sitter and preschool teacher.)

  4. Cute gift bags. My guess is that Carter is going to act like most toddlers and not even realize you're gone. (Based on my experience as a sitter, nanny, and preschool teacher.)

  5. He's gonna do great mama and you deserve to have an absolute blast!! I cannot wait to hear how blissdom goes and how badly I need to figure out a way to get there next year!! PS you are such a freaking awesome mom and M and your parents are so lucky that you've made it such a great routine that I'm sure they'll all be fine :) xoxox

  6. I left my daughter one time for one night almost a year ago....I suppose it's time I do it again. I don't know how I would handle 4 nights. The hubby and I are planning a real adult vacation for Spring 2013, I'm already excited but nervous to leave not 1 but 2 of my children.

    And bath time glow sticks? I've never heard of those, I think I need to get some.

  7. Love the goodie bags! Such a great idea. You will be a mere 30 minutes away from me when you land in Nashville! Hope all you gals have fun at Blissdom and enjoy your stay in Tennessee :)

  8. Great gift bags! You go on and enjoy yourself in TN!

  9. Really the laminated schedule isn't bad. We left Chase with my parents last night with plans for them to put him to bed. 7:45 we get a text "he's been crying for a half hour" so we raced home to our poor little never been put to bed by anyone else teething baby. I'm sure if we weren't just a half hour away my parents could have given him ibuprofen and he would have gone to sleep eventually.

  10. C is going to love having his grandparents there! Plus all those awesome gifts :-)
    Looking forward to meeting you Sunday!

  11. C is going to have a blast with his daddy! good time for some male bonding :)

  12. Awww your an awesome mama...making up little goodie bags for him, adorable!!

  13. Love the gift bag ideas!! And he and you will do fine woman. Enjoy your trip! So wish I was going!!

  14. Look at you super mom!! This is a big step! I probably spend more time away from Jamie in one week than you've ever spent away from Carter. So speaking from experience it will all be ok!

    When I left Jamie for the first time overnight I tried to make my dad a list. He saw it and laughed. Looked at me and said "you do realize I managed to keep you alive for 30 years right?". He then promptly picked up Jamie's stuff and off they went. Sans list. And you know what? They did great! And so will Carter!

    Hopefully you do great too! Try and enjoy yourself!!

  15. Um. It looks like I hijacked ilymtc and wrote a post. Seriously. I smiled and even teared up a time or two noticing the similarities. you are a wonderful mommy and carter is very lucky to have someone that puts so much time and thought into him. Of course you will miss each other! But the time will fly! And he'll be so excited to see you when you get home! I'm excited for you and I'm excited to see just how much fun you both have!


  16. Have a great trip, and will all be fine. From someone who has done the same freakout before going away, I can totally relate. I've done it a few times now...sometimes just a night, so far no longer than 4 nights myself. Only one night that both my husband and I have been away from the Tomster. Our "schedule" with Tommy, however, is nothing like yours since I'm only home all day with him on the weekends. It will be a mini vacation for you and him, and I bet as much fun as he'll have with Daddy and his grandma and grandpa, he'll appreciate his Mama even more when you are back!

  17. Those bags are fabulous! What a fun mommy!!

  18. Thank you for reassuring me that it is not weird to not be able to predict in the foreseeable future when I will be "ready" to leave my baby.

    You obviously have great help, are prepared, have a fun trip planned--but it's still hard! Enjoy your time and you will be SO happy to return home!

  19. You are a fun mom! I'm leaving my six kids with nothing fun like that. I'm not sharing your post with them at all. ;) You'll have fun, you'll wonder what he's doing, you'll miss him, you might cry. But you'll all survive, and next time it will be easier. Looking forward to meeting you!

  20. I think it's healthy that you're going and getting some "me" time!

    I have left Thatcher overnight 4 times in the 1st year, and it's hard every time, but they do great. It's healthy for them to see you come and leave and have some things that you do on your own, I think! And, they really are just fine - amazingly our parents and spouses have it under control when we're away, but they're relieved to see us when we get back, too!

    I definitely didn't get him presents or fun things for when I was gone so you win mom of the year! Way more thoughtful than me - ha ha!

  21. I know how you feel. Your an awesome mom & those goodie bags are such a cute idea. Have a good trip

  22. I tell you what! I'm the same way when it comes to Chloe. Although, I haven't ever left her over night. But I have a feeling I would be the same way. She has certain things that only Husband and I know about. Like she takes her milk in a certain sippy and her water in a certain sippy, and that she won't take her milk from the water sippy, and visa versa. And that we do mornings a certain way....and she has certain things that she eats in the morning because she has to be able to eat what Day Care has for her morning snack. So, if she's having a bagel at school, she won't get a waffle at home...that sort of thing. So, I know exactly how you feel! You are an amazing Mommy, and if I were leaving for 4 days, I'd make the same rules and post them EVERYWHERE! LOL! I hope that you have a great Mommy time out and enjoy yourself!!

  23. LOVE those bags! I'm stealing this in the future if I need to. You're such a good mama. I too abide by our routine and go crazy if something odd gets thrown in the mix. Enjoy your time away!

  24. You are not alone. I thought I would have a complete and total melt down when I left my kids for the first time (for 3 days). It was hard and I missed them terribly, but I had a lot of fun. Have fun in Blissdom. Love the cute bags you made for Carter. Very sweet.

  25. This was me before Hubs and I went off to Vegas this past fall.

    You'll be fine, he'll be fine AND you need this time!

    Enjoy yourself at Blissdom!

  26. I'm working up the the nerve to MAYBE leave Kitty with my mom when I do my half marathon in August. MAYBE.

    You hit the nail on the head, lovah - she's my full-time job! And I love her more than anything! When you put your every waking (and sleeping) moment into raising a productive member of society, you have a system and a standard! You also can get a little myopic :) ENJOY your time away and come back and teach us EVERYTHING, mkay?

  27. I totally understand the freak out. In September of last year, my hubby took my son (who was 10 moths at the time) to Hawaii to go visit our family for two weeks. Let me tell you, that was the longest 2 weeks in my life. And to make it worst, when they came back, my baby forgot who I was for a day or two.

    I love the daily goodie bags. Such a great idea.

  28. Loooooove your idea of leaving him presents to open each that that you're gone! What a good Mommy :o)

  29. I've never left Grayson either overnight. I have spaz attacks with regular babysitters!

    I know C will have so much fun with his daddy & grandparents, and you will be fine, too! He'll love the little treat bags and I bet you will get the best greeting ever when you get back!

    Can't wait to meet you!!

  30. THAT is adorable. All of it. The goodie bags? Why didn't I think of that? (maybe because $30 times four is a lot of extra Blissdom budget!). What are these glow sticks that you speak of? They sound like something the kids would L.O.V.E.

    I'm leaving the youngest for the first time ever. I may have to text my hubs at regular intervals asking for pictures.

  31. I just left Evalyn overnight for the first time two weekends ago. And surprisingly? I didn't even worry for a second. It was wonderful. You will have a blast and he will be just fine. And trust me, it will be the best moment EVER when you walk in the door at the end of your trip and see his excitement when he sees your face.

  32. I freak out too. It took me 18 months to let Colton stay the night with my grandparents (the ONLY place he has stayed) and he is 2. I also like our routine and I don't want anyone (besides me) to mess it up!

    Have fun!


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