Our First Family Vacation

When Tim and I first started talking, before our first date, we often talked about going to the Supercross race in Las Vegas. This now has been something on our bucket list for over three and a half years. A few months ago we were watching a race on TV and I got to thinking that there is also a race in Phoenix, AZ. Which also happens to be where my godparents live. So, while watching the race I jumped on the computer and found out which weekend the race was and then looked at tickets. I could hardly believe my eyes when I pulled up tickets on Southwest for just $88 round trip, total! That price included taxes as well as two free checked bags. I was so excited that I asked Tim, "Wanna go?" He of course said, "Yes!" My next step was then to look up how much tickets were to go to the race, and if we could find good seats. Since we had found such a great deal on the flight we were able to find great seats at a somewhat decent price.

I quickly called my aunt (godmother) and made sure it was ok with her for us to come and stay with them. She of course was extremely welcoming. It was settled, we didn't hesitate, bought the tickets and waited a few months for our first family vacation! 

Our flight out to Phoenix left at 6:15am. So, this meant we left our house at 3:30am. We of course were excited so sleeping didn't come too easy, but thankfully we did sleep a little. Karoline, who we thought would sleep on the way to the airport didn't fall asleep until we got to the parking lot, go figure. 

After getting onto the shuttled, checking our bags, through security and finding our gate we had enough time to eat a little breakfast and get ready for the flight. Traveling this early might not be ideal to some, but we loved it, especially Tim. One could say he's not the biggest fan of having to deal with other people or wait in large crowds. 

We were able to board the plane with all of the other families, before general seating. 
Karoline was great on the flight. We made sure we got up and walked around once as recommended by my OBGYN. We also gave her a sucker when we started our decent into Phoenix to help with her ears popping. Truly, she was awesome, we couldn't have asked for it to go any better. She of course did not sleep, despite being woken up 4 hours before her usual wake up time. 

After getting our luggage and finding my aunt we made our way back to their house for some breakfast. At this point it seemed Karoline got her second wind, so we went to the park. It was only after we left the park that she seemed a bit on the sleepy side. We were going to go for a drive to show Tim my uncle's golf course, and then this happened ...
Please note this is not our usual car seat and we still have Karoline rear face. This car seat was one that we were able to travel with much easier at this time since I am unable to help carry anything over 25lbs.
Apparently they were both a little tired. We drove around for a little bit. But, true to form the second we pulled into the driveway Karoline was wide awake for the rest of the day. 

On Saturday we were able to go to the Train Park. A park that I remember playing at with my brother and cousins. It was really neat to get to experience it all again with Karoline. 
Karoline enjoyed riding on the train!

My parents have a picture of me "driving" this stage coach in their home.

Sand is always a favorite.

After playing at the park I was fortunate enough to get Karoline to take a nap. Not only that but, I also got a picture of her sleeping! I do not have very many of these.
Such a sweet girl sleeping with her "bay."

Saturday night was the Supercross race. I was very excited to get to see what it was my husband used to do. The race was held at Chase Stadium. I had been to the stadium for a baseball game before, it was neat to see it transformed to a track. Overall, it was a really fun experience. I enjoyed getting to see it live, vs on TV, we (Tim, my uncle, and I) all had a great time. I was however glad I had ear plugs. They weren't necessary and the noise level was safe for R2. But, they sure were nice to drown out the sound of the announcers who felt it was a good idea to yell into a microphone. 

This was also the first night that someone else has put Karoline to bed in over a year. She did great and so did I. There is something to be said about knowing your child is in good and capable hands. It makes it much easier to enjoy yourself and have a good time. Karoline even started calling my aunt, "Nana." At this point in time she can't quite say the word aunt. None of us ever used the term Nana when referring to my aunt, she came up with that all on her own. My brother put it best when he said, "They (my mom and aunt) both do have extremely big hearts and aren't afraid to show it. So, I could see the confusion on her (Karoline's) part." 

We were sitting on what is normally the third base line.

Such a handsome guy.

Sunday was the last full day of our trip. Karoline wanted to make sure that we enjoyed all of it and was up at 4:30am. She slept with us off an on until about 6:30. One of her worst nights in a while. I am beyond thankful that her normal nights of sleep are from 8pm-7am. I sure hope R2 sleeps just as well as she usually does. The boys went on a bike ride while us girls had some shopping to do. I made a seven layer dip for the Bronco game as well as a carrot cake for dessert. There was a nap for Karoline that came in the car. I am not sure how many times I've sat in the car so she could nap but it always has been worth it. She would love to not nap, but poor little thing doesn't realize her little body still needs them. Thankfully she slept well and was able to make it through the Bronco game. 

Representing the Bronco's in AZ!

The game ended well and we were all pretty happy with the outcome. After such an early start to our day we were in bed and asleep by 10pm on Sunday night. Both Tim and I were elated when we woke up on Monday morning all on our own at 6:30am! Karoline didn't wake up until 7am, guess it just took a few days for her to get used to her surroundings. 

The airport in Phoenix is not near as large as DIA. We were able to make it to our gate in no time and had plenty of time to people watch and eat an early lunch. Our flight home went just as well as our flight out. This time we came into Denver from the west side. It was really neat, Tim was able to point out the Sand Dunes, Salida, Canon City, Pikes Peak and we could even see a dust storm in Pueblo that had shut down I25. On our decent it was a little bumpy, the rhythmic swaying was enough to put Karoline to sleep and to make me pretty sleepy too. When we landed several people were surprised to see Karoline was even with us at all, they all said she was just an angel on the flight! I'm very thankful it went so well. 

All in all, we had a great trip. I learned that traveling with small children definitely takes a bit more planning up front, but if you put in the time everything will hopefully go smoothly. I'm glad we were able to take a trip as a family of three and that it went so well. I look forward to many more trips in the future as a family of four. I can't believe our little R2 will be here in 12 weeks. We have finally picked a boys name, still no clue for a girl! 

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