This post is two weeks late but things have been a bit busy and this is the first chance I’m getting to update my blog. Two weeks ago we went to Dullstroom for the weekend with our good friends, the Maritz family. Dullstroom is a beautiful little town in Mpumalanga – the place is so tranquil that you just can’t help relaxing and with the busyness of the end of year we all needed a breather. In addition, Stef and Sophia are Cameron’s godparents and it was really great to have some time to just chill out with them and their kiddies, Daniella and Michael.
We spent a wonderful weekend with chilly evenings and beautiful days. On the Saturday we went trout fishing (unsuccessfully), explored the town and our surroundings and Sophs and I managed to fit in a massage (utter bliss). In the evenings we lit a fire around which we enjoyed great food and long chats. Relaxing as it was though, it was also a bit of an eye opener in terms of what travelling with a baby involves …
Firstly we played Tetris trying to fit everything into the car. Then we had to break our journey twice to give Cam a break (in the past we would have done a trip like that without any stops). On arrival we nobly attempted to stick to the routine and gave Cam his bath before putting him down. However between the chilly weather, new surroundings, long trip and bath in the basin we landed up with one seriously over-stimulated child and had a two hour crying marathon before he passed out. By the time the Maritz’s arrived we were looking pretty haggard and in need of a large glass of wine.
After a disturbed night of sleep (Cam was sleeping in our room and we’d forgotten just how noisy he is), we took a much more relaxed approach to Saturday. After a busy morning he fell asleep around 15:00 and didn’t wake until 20:00. We skipped his bath, gave him another feed and put him down. He went right back to sleep and only woke twice for further feeds. New rule – don’t bother with the routine for short trips!
Feeling refreshed and rejuvenated we headed home after a coffee stop in Dullstroom. On the trip there Cam had gotten cranky when he needed a feed but otherwise was okay (I landed up feeding him in the parking lot of the Belfast Spar – it should be noted that Belfast is incredibly dodgy and not an ideal spot to stop) . Since I’d fed him just before leaving our hope was that he’d sleep the whole way home. It started off well but then we had to stop for petrol and as soon as the car stopped Cam woke up. We then endured half an hour of Banshee Baby before the next garage. Twenty minutes from home he started up again, with the result that when we finally pulled into our complex Col and I were partially deaf and in need of another weekend away!
While travelling with a baby is more stressful, anything is hardest the first time and we know that the next time will be a bit easier. A bit of Banshee Baby is a small price to pay for family memories and we are looking forward to our next adventure already.