Vacation Day 1: Travel

We had a 5:30 am flight so it was an early day. As these were bargain tickets bought on the fly, beggars can’t be choosers.

We also flew on American Airlines. We usually fly Southwest. That 25$ a bag kept our packing in check. Thank goodness we have a washer and dryer at our final destination!

We were grateful that Daddy could help us get to the gate. A HUGE thank you to American Airlines for the companion pass for him.


The hanging gardens around Portland International are amazing!!!

Even at four in the morning, the place was hopping. My kids made some friends from the Ukraine.

Mom Win!!!!

I found these cups at Target. We kept refilling them with ice water and never had to BUY water. Plus, the cups are eco-friendly. Loved them!

We had seats all together for this flight already, but if you do not, don’t panic. American will do all they can to keep families together.

Some tips though:
Ask if animals are flying with you. There was a cat on our flight. Even though the lady said it was hypoallergenic, my daughter still started sneezing. I didn’t mess around, I gave my kids Benadryl and kept the inhaler nearby.

ALWAYS BRING YOUR ALLERGY KIT. TSA will let it through. Epi-pens, inhalers, liquid Benadryl. They didn’t even blink.

Snacks, don’t forget the snacks. My snack bag for each kid: Protein bar, goldfish, fruit snacks, and trail mix.
That cup of ice water came in handy too.

One personal item as your carry on. Those bins filled up so fast. I was grateful we all only had a bag that would fit under our seats.

Headphones! There are free in-flight movies. Headphones are a must.

Travel pillows. It is hard to get comfortable on an airplane and it is a bit cramped in coach, those travel pillows really helped the kids out.

Dallas layover!

I don’t know how this happened but when my kiddos thanked the pilot for an awesome flight when we landed in Dallas, he invited them into his office.

I had stowed my phone and had to rush to get pictures and video. Lenna asked a ton of questions and Jude was just in awe. They got to sit in the seats and it was simply magical of this pilot to do this. I am still amazed.


They got their wings and we stepped off the plane in Texas! It’s a short video since I lost my phone in my large bag.

Texas, y’all.

So, of course, we had BBQ brisket.

Lenna loved the train. Jude was less sure about the whole thing. It’s a large airport but it felt small to us. Our gates were right by the train and the staff at Dallas Fort Worth was just awesome. We were truly charmed.

Jude was pretty tired after lunch. This was him at our gate. I had to half carry him to the plane. We were in the very back, which actually was nice! You could lean your seat all the way back.
We had no seat assignments for this flight and I had to go to the gate attendant to work out our seating. Without blinking she put us all together in section 30.  On the plane, I was told by the flight attendant that they reserve seats so that they can make sure children stay with parents.

That really impressed me.
My overall experience with American Airlines was a 4 out of 5 stars. The ONLY thing I did not like was the 25$ bag fee. Otherwise, I would fly with them all the time for the in-flight movies alone.


We made it!!! Waiting for us was a surprise. My sister and my niece were with my mom! I fully admit I was too busy hugging everyone to take more pictures.

The airport in Richmond was small and we got our bags and headed to the gas station…. for dinner!

I was sceptical. However, it was some good eating!

We recommend WaWa’s and yes sissy, you were right.

After dinner was the two-hour drive and we fell into our beds around 11 local time. That would be 8 WA time so an early bedtime for the kids. 😂

From our house in WA to my Mom’s it was a 17 hour day.

Welcome to the South kids! Its gonna be a fun vacation!



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