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Travel Day

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The day began with the final countdown cloud coming off the refrigerator.

Schäfer said, “I can’t believe this day is here! I’ve waited so long!”

We were all ready to go by 8am. It has taken us 4 days to pack and get the house ready, but it was worth it. A stress free travel morning was glorious!

Our preparation also blessed Hubs and I. We were asleep by 10:30pm last night. Waking up refreshed was so worth it. Dare I say that we were better parents because of it?

Hello warm, tropical Thailand.

I keep reminding Hubs that eventually the kids will haul their own small suitcase filled with their belongings, but until then I promise that I did my best to leave the kitchen sink at home. This year we had 2 suitcases checked and 3 carry on bags. One of the bags was mostly filled with diapers and snacks.

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The girls moved non-stop. Selah zoomed the Thomas suitcase around. Sianna tried to stay on the line.

Since our flight was delayed, we were 2 hours early. I was happy to let them work some energy out. I didn’t mind that we were so early. If we had been at home, the kids would be emptying out toys or trying to open the suitcases – especially Miss Selah who is in the Age of Discovery.

It was cold in the airport. I dressed the kids in layers so that they could be taken off as soon as we landed in Thailand’s 91 degree heat + humidity. Hubs nor I wanted to be carrying around bulky winter coats.


There was quite a bit of fussing regarding who got to push the suitcase with wheels.

Schäfer watched a nature special and played with the finger puppets.

Once on the plane, Schäfer played with his Tag. Sianna worked on a sticker book.

This girl could stick, stick, stick stickers for hours.

Our flight to Kunming was only 30 minutes – not even time to offer a refreshing beverage.

Flying to Kunming is normally not an option. On a whim, Hubs checked the flight prices one last time and found discounted tickets for 100rmb each + taxes. ($16) Once the taxes were added in, they were about the same price as the bus.

However, the bus is 4+ hours depending on how many road accidents there are versus a brief 30 minutes on the plane. Oh, and if we took the bus we would have to overnight in a hotel to ensure that we would make our flight. Not to mention hauling kids and luggage in a taxi to the bus station, a taxi to the hotel, and then a taxi to the airport.

3 taxis + 4 bus tickets + 1 hotel = those $16 plane tickets were golden.

Selah did pretty good on the flight. In 20 minutes, she went through stickers, a small toy, and almost all our beef jerkey. We pulled out some Baby Einstein for the last 10 minutes.

You gotta do what you gotta do when in confined spaces.

When we landed in Kunming, we noticed the weather was already feeling warmer. The lunch options were: expensive Chinese, greasy KFC, or expensive Starbucks. We opted for the latter.

All checked in and heading to our gate. We were delighted to learn that the new Kunming Airport has an indoor play area at International Departures. I love for my kids to run around and play hard before they have to sit for 3 hours.

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Once on the plane, the kids received good behavior prizes. Schäfer has been asking for some army men. Sianna received paper, stickers and new markers.

Selah also received paper, stickers and colors, but she was finished with that in 3 minutes.

So I gave her a small walrus and sea turtle which she played with for 4 minutes.

And then she was DONE.

Two is an incredibly difficult age to travel with.

By comparison:

age 6
Schäfer played for a while, then asked for a movie.

age 3.5
Since it was 3:15pm, Sianna quickly fell asleep and stayed that way for most of the flight. When she woke, she ate the in-flight meal without making a mess and then watched some Mary Poppins until landing.

Meanwhile Selah…
would not nap because she’s in a new place and everything is so exciting.

loved emptying all the magazines, barf bags, duty free shopping guides, and airplane safety pamphlets.

TV does not entertain her. She won’t watch more than 5 minutes.

Then, she’ll open and shut the windows, toss her toys about, jump on the seat, and talk to the people behind her.

Meal time is incredibly difficult because she wants to feed herself… on an airplane…using that little, wobbly tray…

The easiest way to get through the flight is to walk around with her at which point she’ll stop to talk to strangers, try to open their purses, or play with their buttons and jewelry.

We arrived in the Land of Smiles with tired, but happy children. They shed their layers while we stood in line for customs. (At this point, Selah entered and exited Thailand several times while we were getting the big kids through customs.)

Once we were stamped into Thailand we got our luggage, purchased SIM cards, and piled into a taxi at which point Selah crashed and slept the entire way to the guest house.

Our kids went straight to showers and were in bed by 8pm. I stayed in the room and helped the kids practice quietness, finding the potty, and filled the ever persistent need for hydration.

Tomorrow is a big day! We’re off to see the doctor and dentist. Yes, my kids look forward to medical appointments. They are so rare and… exotic to them.

1 comment to Travel Day

  • New additions to “You know you’re a TCK when …”:

    * you enter and exit a country several times while your family goes through customs
    * you look forward to medical appointments. They are so rare and… exotic.

    Yay for vacations! and Yay for TCKS!

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