Travel with Kid(s) or Alone — I Need Your Advice!!

Wow, talk about another beautiful sunny day in Anchorage! I’m not sure how many more days like this we’re going to have!  Today I went on a little hike with the hiking group of mamas. Unfortunately Joshua wasn’t happy so we had to turn around early. That was sort of a bummer, but what can you do!
At least it was pretty —
Thankfully we didn’t see any bears, but I’m surprised because we did see this: 


A big pile of dead salmon.
There were no creaks around the trail we were on, so we are almost positive that someone brought it up to this trail.  So rude, who would throw a ton of dead fish off the side of a trail!? It smelled really gross. We’re thinking – assuming- someone brought it up to “bait a bear,” which means to attract a bear and then kill it (stupid, I know) or they just wanted to get rid of threw it here. I’m trying to figure what else the purpose of it being there would be. Not cool people, not cool at all.
Look who I found on my way home!
My sweet handsome boys!
Alright, I need your help! I have a very important question I need your advice on! 

This fall/winter, I plan on traveling back home to go to a football game and see family too, of course. Our entire family (me, husband, both boys) will be visiting next summer, so this is more of a short trip… but still a trip!

None of my family (except parents and sister who visited this summer) have met Joshua yet. We haven’t seen our extended family and friends for over a year so everyone obviously really wants to see the kids. 

I have a couple options:
a) go by myself for a quick weekend. I would leave the kids home with my husband, go for the football game, see family and then fly home by Sunday night.
b) go by myself with both the kids and stay longer, probably a week.
c) I could go and just take one kid, but I don’t really like that option. I could still then only go for a weekend since my hubby is working. I guess I could probably find someone to watch one of the boys during the day, until my husband got off work if I had to.
What should I do??
Is flying with two toddlers a horrible idea? (Joshua will be 1 by then so yes- two toddlers!) How hard is that going to be? I will have them, luggage, two car seats, a stroller. There are no lay-overs, so that is good.  I know it can be done, I’ve seen super-hero moms do it before, but is it going to be awful?
I could go by myself for a couple days, but what would I do without my kids?? All my friends have kids so it might be strange visiting them and not having my own kids with me. Plus, I know my family will want to see them. However, we will  be back in the summer, but that’s still a ways a way. It might be a fun trip to take alone…. but still, no babies with me?!

Just thinking about leaving them…. I don’t know if I had do that. I feel like I would worry the whole time about them. What would I even do

Oh! I should also mention that we can only buy two seats so if I take both kids it will be me with Joshua on my lap (around 13 months at the time we go probably) and Lucas in his own seat. And Joshua is practically the size of Lucas… ha

I could go and take one kid, but which one would I take? Maybe taking one kid makes the most sense?

I know that is a lot of information! 

What would you do?? I need your help!!

Published by Samantha Mellen

Certified personal trainer & health coach helping women transform their lives through fitness, abundant mindset coaching and internal peace. Mom of two boys, living life in Alaska.

14 thoughts on “Travel with Kid(s) or Alone — I Need Your Advice!!

  1. GO ALONE!! I flew with both kids WITH my husband and its still so much work! I can't imagine doing it by myself. Not to mention, it might be nice for a quick get a way by yourself. You haven't ever done it right??!!! You would come back happy and refreshed! But I would mostly go alone to save yourself from the stress of traveling with both babes by yourself!!!!

  2. I say if you are going soon with everyone go by yourself and have time to talk and enjoy family alone. otherwise i would say take both boys and stay a week. it really is not so hard. carry one and put one on a leash, even if he is not run to run away. take snacks and relax and enjoy family

  3. If it is not a financial hardship to pay for seats for both boys on the plane, I say take them & stay a while.

    I would not do lap-child though, after 6 months old. No way. Esp. not by myself!

    I couldn't leave my 1 year old for a weekend, so if it came to taking one or the other, I'd take the younger (he'll still be nursing right?)

  4. How much is the average airline ticket from/to Alaska? I'm sure it's way too expensive to have someone fly out to help you with the flight. How long of a flight would it be?

    I absolutely could not leave my boys and they are now 14 and 16. I just enjoy my family and don't like to be separated from them. They are in Maine on a missions trip this week and then will go camping with the church for 4 days in a couple of weeks. It's okay for them to go away but I still miss them. I went by myself to a conference ten years ago when they were 3 and 5 and I had stomach ache the entire time – like someone punched me in stomach because I was so homesick. I do not like to fly, at all, and it did not help that JF Kennedy Jr and Carolyn Bisset's airplane went down the night before I was to fly home.

    I'd be torn too. The airplane ride could be torture but I couldn't leave them either. I'd only get two seats too – I'd suffer thru to save the cost of the other seat.

    Karen in MD

  5. any kid over the age of 2 is going to have to have their own airline ticket… something to think about. (i think that's right.)

    i would probably either go by myself… or just bring Joshua. I know you could do it, but it's going to be tough… real tough. you might be more patient then me, but it'll be tough. how long is the flight??? we went to FL a couple months ago (kids are 4 and 2) and hubby went with too and it was still hard to keep kids entertained. but i guess if you can put up with it for the few hours in the airport and plane, it wouldn't be bad.

  6. No matter what you decide, let me know what days you will be home and I will fly up to see you. Of course would be great to see the kids too but decide what's best for you and do it that way. I'll get a ticket to the football game too!

  7. I am all about traveling with out kiddos. I love traveling with all three of mine. 6, 4 and 2. but going somewhere especially to see family is so much fun by yourself. You can really chat with friends and family and enjoy yourself. Especially since you are going back in the summer.

  8. I've done trips by myself before with two kids. (2 1/2 and six months) and found that people are really really helpful when you are outnumbered by children.

    See if your family can procure a couple of carseats so you don't have to haul them with. (Rental car company perhaps or friends with kids that have outgrown their carseats?)

    If it's only the travel part that makes you nervous I say plan plan plan and you'll be fine, but if you think having free time with family is appealing then leave the kids at home.

    if you decide to take them I have some packing tips I can share…just let me know.

    Swithcing gears….
    Is there someone you can report the baiting/dumping to? It sounds SO dangerous to have those fish there next to a trail! Do you carry pepper spray when you're out? I am too big of a wuss to live in grizzly country! My BIL lives in Valdez…too remote for me and I used to be a park ranger!

  9. If you can't get Joshua a seat, I'd say leave them at home.

    We flew in August with Luke, he was 10 months old. He spilled a coke on DH's lap. 😦

    Then, we had to go back at the end of September, we thought we'd learned our lesson & used bottled drinks. Nope, he STILL managed to spill a drink on DH's lap! (it belonged to the guy next to us!)

    So, um, yea, holding a kid on an airplane sucks and we vowed we will never do it again. We'll either fork over the $$ for seats or drive.

    I think you'd have an AWESOME time with your family if you went by yourself. If you are okay being away for 2-3 days, GO FOR IT! I wish I could do it, but I'm too attached!

  10. I don't know if I could be away from them the whole weekend…. I know I would really miss them. However, I have worked a saturday and sunday all day and been gone from them all day and only seen them at bedtime, so I guess it wouldn't be TOO different. I would probably be gone 2 nights and 2 days only.

    Not sure! 😦

  11. In all honesty, I think you should go alone. My son is a fantastic flyer, but I still get nervous when traveling. He's been to California 5 times and to Hawaii twice, but entertaining during an entire flight can be a bit taxing on the mama! I get nothing but compliments on his behavior, but now that baby is due soon I feel that may all change. I think you should travel as a family before you attempt to juggle both boys on your own.

    I know exactly what you mean about family wanting to see them, but you have to think about the big picture. Flying, being overwhelmed with so much attention and lots of new faces, adjusting to a new environment (which usually equals no naps!), then making the jouney home again in such a short time frame may be a bit much for the boys. Plus, you deserve a bit of time to focus on YOU!

    I didn't leave Lucas for the first time until he was 18 months, so I really do know how difficult it would be to be away from your babies. But like you mentioned with your work schedule…it's been done before!

  12. I personally would take the kids and stay for a week!!
    You could have your hubby help you get your luggage & carseats checked and then you'd just have the boys, the stroller (with kids strapped into it) and your carry ons. You can check the stroller at the gate and there are always flight attendants standing there and they could totally help you get seated. Plus if it's not a full flight you might end up with 3 seats! When we flew to CA a couple months ago with a layover, there was only 1 flight (out of 4, roundtrip) that Jenna didn't have a seat. If Joshua is still in an infant carrier you could have him sit in that, that was what we did and it worked like a charm! She slept almost the entire time!
    It would be hard for me to pass up my kids having time with family that they hardly, if ever, see. We have out of town family and I jump at any chance for us, my kids especially, to see them. I think it's really important, especially when there are grandparents involved. 🙂

  13. I fly about three times a year cross country with my daughter and hubby has never traveled with me because he is active duty military. I have learned ALL the tricks of the trade of traveling my myself with a child. Granted, it is only one, but still. I agree with the other posters that said flying with a lap child is the WORST. I know you might think he'd be ok but it really only works well when they are little. By the age of one he will be ALL over the place. Lucas would probably be fine but you will still have to deal with possibility of tantrums on a plane and that is no fun. I agree go alone and take a break for yourself. It would be good for you, good for the kids, and if the whole family is traveling to OR again soon, why not? There is a first time for everything.

    PS: if you do decide to take them check out http://www.kidsflysafe.com. I use it and love it.

    Car seats check for free and if you buy the car seat travel bag at BRU, you can stuff it full of clothes, diapers etc and save on luggage fees.

    A portable DVD player will save your LIFE on a plane. Seriously.

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