Mia first “earned her wings” at three months of age. Planes, trains, automobiles you name it, we’ve done it. When traveling with a small child you have to be prepared to know that pretty much no one who boards a plane is going to voluntarily choose to sit by you. Never will you hear, “Oooh Can I sit by the small child… they are so cute on planes.”
Arriving home from our most recent trip to PA, I realized that Mia is a darn good travel partner. We were delayed, stuck on the tarmac for over an hour, delayed again and experienced major tubulance. Let’s just say she gets it. I attribute her behavior to the fact that I never stopped traveling because I was afraid of the journey with child.
For most, myself included, the thought of being confined with a group of people and your screaming child with no exit in site is pretty much torture. But, like I said in a previous post about taking your kids out to eat, you will get through it and in the long run you’ll be all the happier.
What to take…
Don’t load up with too many items or your carry on bag will bestow great misery upon you. I know because I’ve done it. Think about the items you would take with you regardless and figure out how to make them kid friendly… download some kid-friendly apps to your iPhone or bring along headphones and utilize the free XM radio. Simple is good. Our mini DVD player, which we purchased for around $75 has a perfect battery life of about four hours. It really is mini.
Plane Travel Tips
- If you are traveling alone, I’d advise against bringing the carseat on board. Check it. I watch parents struggle miserably with carseats every time I fly. I never lugged one around and travel life has been good.
- Check your stroller at the gate not at the baggage check. The stroller will serve as an extra hand to carry items.
- Check out an airport’s website before your trip. Some airports, like the Pittsburgh Airport, have a kids area where they can run around and play freely.
- Sprite is a treat in our house. Flying means Mia gets to enjoy Sprite. It’s a special time and it gives her something to look forward to. Seriously, sad I know, but it works.
- If your child is under two, take advantage. Most airlines let babies fly free up till two.
- If your child is over two, sign them up for a frequent flyer number with the airlines you fly with. Why shouldn’t your tot earn frequent flyer points?
For more tips check out www.flyingwithkids.com.
December has been a whirlwind month and 2009…. Well, 2009 has been a whirlwind year. Lots of ups and downs in the Mamma Mia world. What fun would it be without a little craziness, right?
I’m taking the next two weeks to relax, reflect and think about how I can make 2010 the best year yet for me, my family and the Mamma Mia blog. You should do the same. Shut down the Tweet Deck, close out of Facebook and take some time to regroup and figure out how you can be a better person, parent, friend, son, daughter, volunteer etc., etc.
If you have any suggestions, comments or thoughts regarding what you’ve read on Mamma Mia this year or what you’d like to see in the New Year… leave a comment and let me know.
I wish all of you the very happiest of holidays and a very blessed New Year!
I have never been a fan of the portrait sessions where the photog instantly transports your little one to a snowy meadow or autumn forest by whipping down a backdrop. When Mia was born I convinced myself I would not succumb to the snowy meadow syndrome and instead attempt for the natural environment photos.
I was introduced to local Orlando photographer Erica Clements a year ago. Erica was able to step in and take charge of my quest for “non portrait portraits.” She wowed us with our holiday photo last year and again this year. We are downtown living folks so it only made sense to capture our natural craziness in the landscape of downtown Orlando.
Zoolander, I mean Mia, really took charge of this shoot with her poses and facial expressions. We all had a great time being ourselves and letting Erica capture these amazing “non portrait portraits.”
Check out more of Erica’s fabulous work www.ericaclements.com
Have you picked up your copy of PLAYGROUND magazine’s winter issue? If you haven’t you should. This issue is full of holiday ideas and parenting tips to last all year.
The Cinderella article is just in time for the holidays… when we could all use a little extra help around the house. It’s also just in time for 2010. The perfect time for parents to turn over a new leaf in making sure our kids learn to be independent and responsible. What better resolution!!!
Click HERE to download a copy of the latest issue of PLAYGROUND. Check out my Cinderella article on page14!
If downloading is not your style, pick up your copy at one of the distribution points listed on the website, or subscribe and have it delivered to your home.
Ho, ho, ho…. And the holiday giveaways continue. Today Mamma Mia is giving away a family four-pack to the Orlando Repertory Theatre’s showing of Dear Santa. The show runs November 20 through December 20 with showtimes on Fridays at 7 pm, Saturdays at 2 and 7 pm and Sundays at 2 pm.
It is the time of year to peek into the magical timeless world of the North Pole, bustling workshops, cheerful elves and even Santa himself. Santa’s efficient, yet frenzied Chief of Staff, the ditzy housekeeper with a secret crush, the high-pressure sleigh salesman and the workshop foreman who does not quite command the English language all combine to keep the place running like clockwork, wit the exception of a few mishaps. Soon, a request from one child’s letter throws everything off course. The answer lies in rediscovering the Christmas spirit.
Don’t miss this holiday show!
How to enter:
- To enter to win the tickets simply click here and your entry will be sent directly to the Orlando Repertory Theatre.The winner will be notified on Monday, November 30.
If you don’t win the tickets you can always purchase them by visiting the Orlando Repertory website or by calling 407.896.7365 ext. 1.
*Winner can select any date except December 12.
I can’t even begin to tell you how excited I am to be able to offer one lucky Mamma Mia reader one of LeapFrog’s most amazing products! I guess I really don’t have to tell you over and over how important reading is for our little ones. But trust me… There are really kids who enter kindergarten who have never picked up a book!
Using the same technology as the Tag™ Reading System, the Tag™ Junior book pal was created to work with, not against that natural urge toddlers’ have to explore just about everything. Tag Junior introduces preschool skills through fun book-based activities.
The Tag Junior book pal is easy for parents and children to use. This is important. Mia’s received a few learning gifts in the past that I still haven’t figured out. Even computer illiterate parents can download audio for up to five books to the book pal, then let their toddlers go to town.
Each Tag Junior board book introduces a different preschool skill including alphabet, counting and social play. There are fun sound effects and open-ended questions that encourage toddlers to take the lead. Open-ended questions and fun sound effects encourage children to take charge, as they touch any part of any page to bring words, pictures and activities to life.
Talk about tracking progress… When a child is through playing, parents can connect the book pal to the online Leapfrog® Learning Path to see progress and download printable activities for more fun.
* Included sampler book, If I Were…, has 16 activities and over 70 audio responses.
What you win:
A LeapFrog Tag Junior Book Pal and two books, ABC Animal Orchestra and Pooh Loves To… This bundle is valued at nearly $57.
How to win:
- Become a fan on Leapfrog’s Facebook page. You MUST do this in order to qualify as a winner.
- Leave a comment on this post. Just be creative…. I leave the comment choice up to you this time.
- If you don’t have a Google account I can link to, please leave your email in your comment or send it to Mamma Mia directly if you feel uncomfortable leaving it in your comment. If you leave your email in the comment leave it as: youremail (at) emailserver (dot) com. I swear I’m working on an easier way to enter my giveaways so bare with me friends!
- Follow my blog and leave a comment letting me know. Just click the link to follow on left hand side of this page. (Come on… I need followers!)
- Tweet this giveaway and leave a comment with the link.
- Follow my blog on FB networked blogs. Soooo EASY!!
More stuff to know:
This giveaway ends at 11:59 pm Eastern Standard Time on November 30. Contest open to the residents of U.S. and Canada only. The winner will be selected through random.org and will have 24 hours to respond with shipping info.
More chances to win:
Fellow mom bloggers are running the same giveaway. Another chance to win, win, win! Yes, I do have a few friends…
Parenting by Trial and Error
Blogging ‘Bout Boys
During the Halloween season I gave away five copies of Wubbzy’s Halloween DVD. Good news Wubbzy fans! Wubbzy’s pals want to share five copies of the new Wubbzy holiday collection DVD, Wubbzy’s Christmas Adventure with Mamma Mia readers too!
Mia has been loving Wubbzy’s Christmas Adventure for about a week now. I have to say the reviews are extremely positive. Lots of laughter is a good thing!
The holidays are on their way, and everyone in Wuzzleburg is getting ready for Winter Wonder Wubb Club fun! In this new DVD, Wubbzy pitches in to decorate the Figgity- Fig Tree, fix Walden’s snow sculpture and even solve the mystery of the Snow Shoo-Shoo. There’s plenty of singing, dancing, hoopty-horns and slippery sledding, all in the DVD that celebrates the ultimate Wow! Wow! season of caring, sharing and friendship.
What, you ask, do you need to do to be the proud owner of Wubbzy’s Christmas Adventure? Leave a comment below telling us why the 2009 holiday season is going to be AWESOME!
All Mamma Mia giveaway winners are selected randomly so your comment will not be judged. Really, how easy is that? You can always email Mamma Mia directly to enter the contest. Five winners will be contacted on Wednesday, December 2.
Check out the Wubbzy’s Christmas Adventure on You Tube.
Growing up, Frank Sinatra was often the soundtrack too many a family gathering. So when Michael Buble came on the scene in 2004, I was captivated by his similar sound. His music stirred up all kinds of wonderful memories and emotions for me.
I had the amazing opportunity to hear Michael Buble in 2005 at the historic Wang Theater in Boston. We happened to be there for the weekend and my thrifty man found us last minute tickets. Michael Buble combined with one of the most acoustically magnificent venues… speechless.
So yes, Michael and I have a history. I’ve been listening to his new CD, Crazy Love, in my office all week… My office is definitely far from the Wang Theater, but the CD has absolutely carried me through a rather hectic and crazy week. The CD rocks! Watch the video for Haven’t Met You Yet on You Tube now. I aspire to have this much fun at the grocery store.
Don’t take my word this new CD is sweet therapy for your soul. By leaving a comment below you can win your very own copy. Let us know why you’re a fan, or why you think you’ll be a fan or even why you want to be a fan… be creative. I have five to giveaway so chances are pretty decent you’ll be swaying to the Buble beat sooner than you think.
If you don’t want to comment below (or don’t know how… ahem… mom), but still want to enter you can email Mamma Mia directly. (you’ll need to click on Mamma Mia to get to my email, mom.)
Winner will be announced November 25.
There’s a lot of great music out there. I’m trying my best to review it all and relay my thoughts to you all on the best of the best. Stay tuned for some kiddie music reviews. Mia and I are having a private kiddie listening party this weekend so stay tuned!
PS~ Sorry for the lacking of accent marks on the Buble. My system was rejecting my attempts.
I live in 1200 square feet of space with my little family. I don’t have room for people let alone space to store the amount of artwork my Mia brings home. Everything is a masterpiece to me, and symbolizes another step in her toddler to big kid journey. The other day Mia showed me a piece of paper and said, “This is a rocket ship.” Usually I just say yes it is and move on, but let me tell you… This really was a rocket ship. My kid is drawing real stuff! Milestone moment indeed. How can I not save every single beautiful project?
If you’re drowning in a sea of kiddie arts and crafts, fear not. I’ve been asking around and have come up with some ideas to save space, save sanity and save the art!
The No Hassle Scrap Book. The word scrap book in general kinda scares me, but I’m not sure what other word to use for this. You must first find a non scrap book kind of scrap book. The kind that has plastic sleeves instead of blank pages for decorating. Utilize a book for every two year’s of your child’s life and slide artwork into the plastic sleeves. There are lots of cool scrap books out there sans tape, paste or glue. Just slide art in the sleeve and viola it’s preserved in time. I’ve found books at local Marshalls, TJ Maxx or even Target.
Family Affair. At the beginning of the month set up a letter sized envelope for each family member… Nana, Pap, Great Auntie etc., etc. Divvy up the artwork between envelopes as you bring it home from school. At the end of the month slap an address on it and send to your relatives who are surely dying for artwork or some kind of creation by your child. Be sure to set one or two masterpieces aside for your file.
Framing. Have you seen a Jackson Pollock piece? Um, yeah… Your child is creating real art that when framed correctly could look pretty cool on your wall. There are always great frames to be found at IKEA.
Go Digital. Take a photo of the artwork and toss the original. As harsh as it sounds, that jpeg is taking up far less space. If you have access to a scanner, you can always scan it straight to your desktop. I found some of my childhood projects last year and did just that.