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Archive for October, 2007

Oh…the things children say….  Three year old Delaney has decided she would like a sister.  Dropped that one on Daddy yesterday and decided to push the issue with Mommy and Cooper at bedtime.  Her reasoning?  “If I have a sister, then we can put THAT ONE (pointing at Cooper) back.”  Yep…wants one year old Cooper to head back (wherever ‘back’ might be!)

Of course, Cooper didn’t understand and Jeff and I laughed for a good 15 minutes, while trying to explain, in our most serious grown-up-can’t-keep-the-smile-down faces…Cooper is staying.  He’s a real person, a brother, a son and a sweet little boy…and he isn’t going away.

And she wants us to have another one…huh?

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An open letter to American Airlines:

You have some WONDEFUL people who work for you, but boy, oh boy!  You certainly have some of the unfriendly type as well.

Here’s the scoop.  I’m a mommy.  For the most part, when I travel, it isn’t alone. (read: 2 small, but incredibly darling children usually join in the fun).

According to SOME of your staff, your boarding policy has changed.  You no longer allow those traveling with small children to board first.  (When I say SOME, I mean, the people at MY ticket counters….because clearly, the attendants who ANNOUNCED, “we will now welcome those who need special assistance and those traveling with small children to board first” at the American Airlines gate RIGHT NEXT TO MINE this past Thursday (October 4th, in St. Louis, MO did not get the memo!)

I was told the new policy is to avoid making other passengers wait.  However, the plane doesn’t take off until I am in my seat with my children….whether that happens first or last.  And, by the way, when I board with my ‘group number’, I ALWAYS manage to offend your first class passengers….I can’t imagine its a good time to be bonked by a 30 pound car seat.  As the eye-rolling tends to get to me, I do make sure first class knows I did request to pre-board…so as to avoid the jostling of those already seated.

 Here’s the visual (if you have traveled with kids, this might make you alternately giggle or sigh with understanding):  I am traveling with only one child on this trip from St. Louis to San Diego… Cooper is 16 months and has been walking for half of his life.  I have a double stroller (as my 3 year old daughter will be joining us soon in SD. )  Cooper is in the front seat.  The car seat is lying across the top of the stroller.  My left shoulder has one bag full of food and milk and yet another bag with items to occupy my son’s attention on our 4 our flight….a DVD player and DVDs, books, a few crayons and a small, tiger puppet.  Cooper has his blanket (his ‘bit’).

At the door of the airplane, I readjust the bags, take the car seat off the stroller, unbuckle Cooper, and with my right hand, manage to fold the stoller to be stored with the baggage.  If I’m lucky, Cooper will walk onto the plane himself and I can take the bags and carseat….if I’m unlucky….Cooper feels timid and won’t walk in front of me. 

 Its at this point, I have invariably been awed by the kindness of strangers.  Almost without fail, some kind stranger will offer to help me on…and, while I’d love to tough it out on my own, I do accept.  Occasionally, the kind stranger works for American Airlines….so, thank you, kind strangers, for making this awkward, tiring journey bearable.

And God Bless those kinds strangers who tell me how well behaved my children are after a flight!  There is little that makes my heart sing as a generous comment.

American ~ Please help me to make life easier on your other passengers….don’t force me to maneuver my children and all of the love that flies with them onto a plane full of other travelers.  Bring your pre-boarding back!

Thank goodness Southwest and US Airways have not followed in your footsteps!

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“Mommy, you don’t match very well.”  Doesn’t sound like a big slam, but it is….I do work so very hard to do things ‘right’ in my children’s eyes.  Let’s be honest….I’m supposed to be MOMMY….the one who has the answers to every ‘why’, who can kiss a boo-boo and make it magically better, who can disguise vegetables in the ‘good food’..but, somehow, its the pink lid on the green cup that catches my three year old’s eye.   Don’t misunderstand…the mis-match was a blatant foul in Delaney’s eyes. 🙂

 And sadly, I instantly want to jump to my own defense…”I was in a hurry”, “You were running late for school”….”Didn’t you see all the neat treats I managed to bring on the flight to California?  The extra pair of panties in case of an accident?  The High School Musical DVD?  The Marshmallows?  And, yet, its my inability to match a cup with a lid that gets your attention!

 That’s ok…I’ll live to fight another day.  You are sleeping and I’m dusting off my Mommy-cape.  I promise, tomorrow, all of your cups and lids will match!

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