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Monday, October 17, 2011

Motherhood Mondays: How long would it take for you to feel ready to travel without your baby?

Alex and I have loved taking family vacations with Toby in tow, but lately, we've been thinking...

Wouldn't it be nice to take a trip with just the two of us? Without bananas. Without diapers. Without 6am wake-up calls! And, hey, we could read magazines on the plane. But, I can't help wondering, would we miss Toby too much? A mama's heart (and head) is a mysterious thing. Would I be able relax with my baby 1,000 miles away?

We talked it over: Alex wanted to go away for seven fabulous nights. I thought we could start with...one night. So, we settled on two nights. :) We're taking a little getaway this weekend to celebrate Alex's birthday (the destination is a surprise!), and Toby will stay home with my mom. Fingers crossed it will go smoothly, and I'll be able to turn off my parental neuroses chill out!

I'm curious: Have you been wanderlust-y recently? Where would you want to go? And fellow parents, how long did you wait to travel on your own, without your baby? Where did you go? Was it hard or awesome? Did you travel for business or pleasure first? When you were growing up, did your parents travel on their own? I would LOVE to hear your thoughts!!!

Just for fun, which of these three waterfront places would you like to visit...
This hotel in Miami, where you can order a grilled fish sandwich by the pool, read magazines, and then go dancing at night.
This (budget!) hotel in Jamaica, where you'd sleep in a thatched roof villa and go snorkeling among green turtles.
This whale-watching spot in Vancouver, where you can hike along the cove, get a massage and sip single-malt scotch as the sun sets.

Which is more your style?

P.S. 10 tips for traveling with a baby.

210 comments:

1 – 200 of 210   Newer›   Newest»
Melissa T. said...

We wanted to go to Hawaii for our 5 year anniversary. But I couldn't bear to leave our 18 month-old for two weeks. So he came along and we had a great time. We were even able to sneak away for a bit while friends watched him. So much fun!

Joanna Goddard said...

melissa, i hear you! yeah, two weeks sounds like soooo long. but i wonder if it would feel super refreshing? i can't decide. we're only going away for two nights and i'm so nervous! :)

Diana said...

I just moved back to the States from Yorkshire, England...and I miss it LIKE CRAZY! Even though I've spent more time in England than anywhere else besides home, I think I'd go back to catch up with friends and visit more British author homes.

Then again, those Jamaica photos are quite tempting. I'd love to go swimming with sea turtles, especially as the weather turns colder.

In short, I want to go EVERYWHERE!

Erin R said...

That last hotel is a bit of a journey from Vancouver. It's on Vancouver Island, at least five hours away. Oh, and it's worth the effort :)

Kelly said...

We have not travelled without our son, and he is three. Honestly, I haven't felt the desire to leave him...we've vacationed with him and really enjoyed it. Of course we have date nights together here in town while grandma babysits. :)

Kelly said...

My mom told me that the longer you wait, the harder it gets for both the parents and the baby. We started leaving our little guy with Grandma every once in a while when he was 3 months old. We love a weekend away, he loves to stay with Grandma, and Grandma adores having him all to herself. Baby steps!

Erin said...

My baby had her first overnight around 6 months old and did so well - so it wasn't as hard to leave her for 2 nights when she was 8 months old. That's still the longest we've both left her, but each of us individually have taken 3 night trips maybe twice each. We now are expecting #2 so I think any long trips will be several years into the future for us :) A few nights away is so refreshing though, especially when you know they are having fun and in good hands.

megan said...

My son is 2.5 yrs old. For our 6th wedding anniversary this past August we went out to dinner and a cirque du Soliel show. It was the longer I have ever been away from our son. It was also the first time someone other (his grandma) than his parents put him to bed. We don't have local help so date nights are far and few between. This coming February we plan on flying to Vegas and staying for 2 whole nights! We live in Los Angeles so it's a short flight. I am so excited! I am still worried being that far from my son. Enjoy your weekend away! I think that it is important for parents to get some grown up time together

Sarah said...

I"m not there yet. I know one day I'll be ready to go on a trip, but we went to a theme park for 10 hours without our baby and I missed her SO MUCH!... Maybe in a few more months.

-Sarah
http://agirlintransit.blogspot.com/

Kendra said...

My mom has told me about the first time her and my dad went away without me when I was a baby. My dad left a 6 page letter (double sided!) to my aunt on how to take care of me for the weekend! My aunt already had 2 adult children! I feel like this means I'm going to need extra tips when it comes time for me to leave my babes :)
PIECE OF CAKE. PEACE OF MIND.

Kelly said...

I would go to Jamaica. I'm expecting my first now so I won't be going anywhere for awhile I guess.

Anonymous said...

Jamaica! But that pool in Miami looks so inviting!

Tam said...

my little is almost 20 months and still nursing - Ive never left him for longer than 4 hrs. We don't have family to watch him, so I guess thats one of the reasons its not an option for us (the other being I'm crazy) -- but my husband is jonseing for some alone time w/me. We really want to go to Vegas. Sigh.

Stephanie said...

Our daughter was 2 1/2 when we first left her alone for a couple nights...and we waited WAAAY too long. Right after that we went to Cancun for a week, and I was surprisingly ok with it. My husband however wanted to call our daughter EVERY SINGLE DAY, sometimes twice a day.

oh, and I'm super wanderlust-y lately...Europe us calling my name : )

anna of (green gable) said...

Interesting topic. I'm definitely craving a day night with hubby after 2 months caring for our newborn. But I miss her do much when I'm away from her form ore than an hour!
Anna of (green gable)

Kendra said...

Also, the 3rd spot is right by where I grew up and I would highly recommend it! My boyfriend is from a little town near there as well and it is a gorgeous area. Surfing is soo fun there :)
PIECE OF CAKE. PEACE OF MIND.

megan said...

Our bambino is turning three (tomorrow!) and I've only been away from him for one night - and we were in the hotel room NEXT DOOR (we went to Ireland and my folks came with - we went out with a friend while we were in Dublin and our kiddo stayed the night with the folks in the room next to ours). It was really a great compromise. I think having your mom there is what will help you to relax - I mean, it's your mom!!!

kate said...

We took our first one night away when Luke was about nine months old. The second trip was two nights about a year later and when he was 2.5 we went to Mexico for five days. Each time he has either stayed with my parents or they have flown out to stay with him and each time it has been awesome and I have usually worried far more about my parents surviving than Luke surviving. It is so unbelievably nice to just be with my husband and not worry about all the extra stuff you mentioned in the post - diapers, changes of clothes, snacks, naps, a constantly chattering kiddo, etc. - and just be with each other. Good for you for taking the time!

Katy L said...

I would love to get away, but I've never even spent the night away from my 15-month-old. I blame breastfeeding, and the fact that she won't take a bottle. And also we lived on another continent for the first 10 months of her life with no one to leave her with! She's been to Santorini with us, and several less exotic places, and we have a blast. But now I am expecting number 2, and I would love to get away with my husband to a little bed and breakfast for just one night before we become a family of four in February. We'll see if I can work up the courage of depriving my kid of her nighttime breastfeed.

Elana said...

My husband and I went to London a few weeks back without our 11 month old baby. At first we were going to take him and we thought better of the travel + jetlag effects (coming from California) for the little guy. He stayed home with BOTH grandmas who flew in from the east coast. A great time was had by all!

I missed him, but I knew he was in good hands. When I came home I felt refreshed and excited to be with him! I think it's important to spend some quality alone time with your partner and remember how important that relationship is too.

Good luck and have fun!

Oh and I'd love to visit all three beach spots, but I'll make do with San Francisco.

third room studio said...

I'm still waiting for a holiday without kids. It seemed that by the time my son was old enough we had another newborn! Thankfully they are easy enough to take with us, though I would love to have a child free getaway... One day.

sumslay said...

My parents said they left me alone for the first time when I was 1. Of course, I don't remember it so I was fine! But apparently my dad woke Mom up the next day and rushed back to get me. :) I remember them taking trips when I was older without me, and I didn't care - I knew they'd bring me back a toy! :)

I say go now! Of course you'll miss the little guy, but it will be refreshing AND you'll be that much more excited to get back to him. :D

petitor said...

Everyone needs breaks, and so are the parents. I think it's absolutely understandable couples sometimes need to get away just the two of them to freshen up. I think couple of days to start and see is a great idea. And then you can slowly extend your stay as the baby grows up.

For me, anywhere where there are mountains and water is a perfect place. I just came back from the central coast wine trip which was nothing but merry!

Anna Alter said...

My daughter is nearly 11 months and this weekend was the first time I was apart from her for an entire day, I was so nervous! It went well, but I'm still not sure when I will attempt a night away... it's so hard to imagine it. Though I think it would probably be very restorative. Good for you for taking the plunge!

Jamaica looks heavenly...

cristie said...

two weeks ago i left my 6 month old for the weekend. the first night she stayed with my parents and the other two nights she was with my husband. she did great all around! i got a little teary the second night but it was great to get away and do baby-free things eventhough i talked about her and thought of her ALL THE TIME! :)

Lauren at TwIn Style said...

I don't have children, but I feel like I could go on a vacation without my baby as long as my mom was taking care of him or her. I really trust her, and I don't think I'd feel too anxious. That said, I'd have to go somewhere with excellent cell phone service so that I could check in as much as possible and always be available. My cousins went on a cruise while their son was young, and not being able to call as often as they wanted to drove them insane.

--r said...

My son is two and a half, and despite the fact that I think about trips without him (to destinations unknown), I can't imagine going anywhere without him yet. Not only would I miss him like crazy, but his interpretations of how things go/work/happen are PRICELESS, so taking him to do stuff isn't just fun at the time, but for weeks and months after as his re-tells us about events.

Amelia said...

So funny that you posted this, I just looked my husband last night and said, "I know we're being responsible...savings...blah blah blah, but can we plan a getaway for just the two of us this Spring?" We have a 2 year old son, and we're thinking about having another child soonish, and a twosome getaway seems to be in order. I don't know why we mothers are wired to crave a break only to spend the break craving the child, but I offer this: we went on a four day trip to a wedding this past spring sans little one, and I decided to do my mother the honor of trusting her care completely. I only called once a day, and when I felt pangs of missing my little one, I thought about making him laugh one day with stories from the trip and the pride that (I think) he will have in having "those kinds of parents". I want to instill a getaway mentality in my children and thus must model a bit of getting away myself. Enjoy your trip, there are two things that are insanely sweet in this world: Sleeping uninterrupted on vacation, and scooping your little one back into your arms after time apart.

Anonymous said...

We left our baby with her grandparents when she was 7months old. We went away for 2 nights and it was SO WONDERFUL to be alone with my husband. I obviously love my daughter but it was a true treat to go away with my husband and just be the 2 of us for 48 hours. I highly recommend it. Afterall, it was just the two of us for 6 years, and having a strong marriage is essential for raising a child. Plus it is a major benefit for your child to be flexible and get used to having someone else do it a different way than mommy does. I know, it can be hard to let go, and I left a list of instructions, but my daughter was perfectly fine when we returned and I felt refreshed and reconnected with my hubby. Have FUN!!!!

Tragic Sandwich said...

I wonder this sometimes, too. Right now I can't imagine leaving Baguette overnight, much less for a few days. My parents left us with our grandparents, who we knew quite well, for about two weeks when I was 4 or 5 and my brother was 2 or 3. My mom said they spent the entire time saying, "Oh, the kids would love this!" and went back the next year with us. They then decided that it was cheaper to take us the first time!

But my grandparents were in their 60s, and Baguette's are in their 70s. They're in great shape, but Baguette is a high-energy little girl who needs (and wants) a lot of oversight.

Kelsi said...

I'm not a mama, so I can't really weigh in on that part! :) But I remember my mom taking two trips without me: once when I was three when she and my step-dad married in Vegas (yeah, they did that!) and another time when my parents went to Florida for a week. I remember missing her, but I also remember having SO MUCH FUN with my grandparents!

And I'm in love with the idea of whale-watching and hiking in Vancouver. That sounds like the absolute most relaxing vacation ever.

JenJekel said...

I'm totally Wanderlust-y lately, although I just got to go to Memphis this past weekend, so that made it a little better. Until I saw that second destination you posted anyway! I would go there in a heartbeat if I could swing it! Although the bathtub at the first place made me wistful!

erica said...

The first time I spent a night away from Leon was for a job interview when he was 25 months old.

The second time was for two nights to visit a dear friend in New Mexico. Leon was 30 months old. I took that opportunity to completely wean him (finally!!).

We have yet to spend time away as a couple. I think a 3 day trip would be doable now that he is no longer co-sleeping.

Hiking and single-malt scotch in beautiful British Columbia is right up my alley. I would also love a quick getaway to Montreal or Quebec City.

MaxxSilly said...

We went away for the the first time this year leaving our 4-year-old and 10-month-old with my MIL. After 4 years of no time alone I was ready to go. It was our 5 year anniversary and I very much looked forward to eating food while it was still hot and not wiping anyone's face. We were only an hour and a half away and called twice but it was bliss.

Let me tell you, when we got back we felt refreshed and closer than ever. We needed that time together.

Oh, and we got the biggest and best hugs when they saw us walk through that door. Do it - you have earned it!

Maia McDonald said...

Oooh definitely the Jamaica vacation for me! Also I don't have kids yet but when I was a kid my parents would have a week long adult only vacation every fall, and we would stay at my grandparents. I think it worked because we were with someone we loved and felt comfortable with it and my mom knew we would be fine as well.

Emma said...

As much as I love the woodsy feel of Vancouver, I spend summers in Maine, so Jamaica looks like the ultimate destination for me!

LW said...

As someone who does not have kids yet, I would love to hear more stories from people who have left their young children from time to time to vacation. Please say it can be done! I don't know if I can go a year or more without an adult-only vacation.

Anonymous said...

After reading a lot of these comments make me think of what I did. I am a home-stay-mom and I really needed some time with my husband. So we took a 4 day vacation to the state where we met when our daughter was 8 months. It felt great!! We would call once or twice a day to only hear that she was great, sleeping better than how she slept with us, having fun, eating really well. We enjoyed sooo much. It felt very strange to have an idea of a restaurant to go and not having to prepare the diaper bag, the car seat, to eat in the restaurant using both of our hands and not feeding our daughter, to be able to go to a museum after that, to have a loud tv at night, etc We came back feeling with a lot of energy and happiness. Our daughter seeemed so big, so heavy, big eyes, everything grew in those days.

Lindsey said...

@Kendra -- My mom did the exact same thing the first time whe she left me with my grandma when I was just under a year old, except my grandma had TEN kids!!!

Anonymous said...

I cried the first time we left our baby at home for a weekend away. I didn't expect to but as we drove away I was gutted with emotion.

Krystal said...

My baby girl is only 2 months old and I feel like it will be an eternity before I can leave her. She won't take bottles so I get nervous even leaving her alone with my husband for too long!

http://krystallitt.blogspot.com

Alexa said...

When my mom was growing up, her parents often traveled without their children and they always took separate planes, just in case!

Daniela said...

I would go to Copenhagen for a weekend, eat at Noma, do some shoppping and just relax wit my man. Oh... wouldn't it be nice?

Jenny said...

When I was 4 and my brother was 18 months old, my parents (who were only 23 at the time) left us with our grandparents for three weeks(!) and took a cross-country road trip. They still talk about it all the time, and I know that my brother and I had a great time at Grandmas!

D2 said...

Great topic Joanna! I'm so glad that you two will be getting away for the weekend - that is FAB. You will feel refreshed and it will be so great for the two of you!!! We did a weekend downtown when our baby was 4 months old and then did another night away (1) when he was 6 months old and then again for 4 nights (to Mexico) when he was 9 months old. Our mother in law watched him and I didn't worry AT ALL (fabulous MIL). And the trips (even the one nighter) were wonderful - recharging and it was so nice to get QUALITY one on one time. I think it was so good for the two of us to do it. GOOD LUCK and you will have such a great time. And yes, my parents did go away often (together) when we were younger. We looked forward to having sitters/relatives watch us - it was a mini-vaca for us too!

i'm leslie said...

I first had to travel for work when my kiddo was 4 months old. It was only for one night, so it wasn't TOO bad. Last month (when she was 7 months old), I had to leave town--again for work--for 10 days, which was MUCH harder. We splurged on an iPad2, so we could Facetime and that made it much more bearable.

Imagining a day where I actually get to travel for pleasure...:)

Oh--and we went to the Wick in our pre-baby days. It's awesome! And so relaxing.

Barchbo said...

I went to San Francisco for a week for work when my son was 4 1/2 months old. I missed him...but it was awesome, too! I wore heels! No diaper bag! My schedule was my own (except for pumping!)

Seriously, it was a little hard, but I really enjoyed reconnecting with my "old" self - non pregant, non Mommy. Plus, I was 40 - I had such a strong non-mom identity that perhaps I missed my old self more than normall.

It was really great for me, and he, his cousins, and grandparents had a GREAT time! I am going to Chicago for work next month and off he goes without me. My husband and I have had nights and weekends away a few times but we sleep easy knowing that he is safe with people who love him. (He's 12 months old. And NO separation anxiety, which helps.)

Jo @ In Corners of My Mind said...

We have had a few single nights here and there, where we were at home and the kids were at Nanny & Papa's, but last March we travelled child free to Boston for a week. We had a fabulous time. Before leaving we went through all the day to day of the kids...I left meal plans to help in that dept. We also established that I would only call once a day to check in, This gave me peace of mind and allowed me to talk to the girls if I wanted to. We had fun buying souveniers for them and even scouted out a few things we could do with them if we returned to Boston with them. All in all it was great, and the best part...coming home, and getting those big hugs, big smiles and huge cuddles.
Enjoy your few days!

i'm leslie said...

Oh! And we saw Sarah Maclachlan there!

undomestic chica said...

My twins are 9 months old and we just went away for the first time on Saturday. We spent only one night away, but it's a 4 hour drive each way so we were gone a big chunk of the weekend. I would definitely recommend it.

Jill said...

My daughter recently turned two and while we haven't taken a legit vacation without her, she has stayed with my parents (1.5 hours away) for three nights in a row on two different occasions. The first time was when she was 13 months old and it was great, but my heart felt pulled in two directions. The second time was recently and I while the first few hours were hard, I wasn't ready for the adult-time to end when three nights was up. I agree with the commenter who said that the longer you wait, the harder it is - my parents traveled solo when we were growing up and they've pushed hard for us to do the same, saying it's what has kept them happy as a couple for 39 years....

Lyndsay said...

When our son was 15 months old, my husband and I traveled to NY (and experienced a wonderful side of the city, thanks to your guide) for my 30th birthday. After traveling for the past year with a baby and all of the extraneous items it entails, I was excited to pack lightly and do whatever I wanted when I wanted. I was especially excited for the plane ride, since our previous flights had included entertaining a baby for 6 hours. A few things I took away from the trip were: 1) It was fun having it just be "us" and I’m able to admit that freely without feeling guilty because that's why we married each other in the first place, right? 2) I had to remind myself at times to live in the moment and enjoy the time with my husband, because it’s easy to go to that place of missing the baby and wishing myself home. 3) It’s important to leave your child with someone you trust implicitly, like my parents – who took such wonderful care of Owen that I think he was a little disappointed we didn’t stay longer. 4) I was glad our trip was four days. It was the perfect amount of time together and I didn’t feel like we were gone for too long. I’m sure as Owen gets older I’ll be more comfortable for a longer period of time, but for now, four days is doable. Hope you have a wonderful trip!

Bethany said...

My sister-in-law and her husband actually exchanged vows on that very bridge in Negril! And stayed at the rock house!

Moonlight said...

when we were young my parents chose to go on vacation with my uncles family and my cousins, so that they could bond with us all day long, but still be able to go out alone during the evening and leave us with our older cousins to baby seat us!

if your baby feels comfortable around your mom, and she feels ok around Toby, there's no need for you to worry!

as for the last question, i find more relaxing a place with a big pool, but when 'm thinking about scenery...i'd go for the second option!

PoetessWug said...

If I could get a great massage at a place that looked like the Miami Hotel, while at the same time eating a delicious grilled fish sandwich and listening to some good music in Jamaica, it would be perfect!! LOL

Kate said...

Expecting first baby this winter, so no experience from the mama end. But my brother and his wife would not let us care for my nephew for a night alone until way too late in my opinion (past 5 years old). Trust your caretakers! We can do it, and we want to! And it will make a tighter extended family as a result.

Also, my hubby and I went to the Jamaica hotel you mentioned last winter and it was FAB. 2 for 1 cocktails at 5 pm sitting over the ocean....fabulous.

Robin said...

Good for you! I am excited to read about your vacay.

My parents watched Micah overnight for us to attend a wedding (in-town) when he was 11 months. The first time we actually went someplace without him was was for another wedding, in LA - he was 2. It went so well, we have had two other 2-night mini vacays since then. I feel totally comfortable leaving Micah with my parents, which is such a blessing.

My parents traveled without us, both for work and for fun - I adored our nanny so I didn't mind at all!

Heather / It's So Suburban said...

We took a week-long road trip to Washington D.C. this summer without our then 14 month old. It was hard, but good for everyone I think. We're planning a longer trip to Europe next spring and haven't decided whether we'll take the little guy or not.

Jenny said...

I recently left my little girl at home with my husband (her daddy!) to go to Paris with my best friend. I was so nervous beforehand (not because I thought my husband wouldn't be great - just because I am a mother!!) but I had the BEST TIME! It was wonderful just to do stuff with no schedule or extra baggage to cart around - I loved it! Looking forward to taking a trip with my husband next ...!

Miss Stovetop said...

We're travelling soon for Diwali, and it was initially supposed to be a 2 week trip to India. But now I have a project in hand and a conference to attend, so we have to cut it short by a 3 days. My mum-in-law was pretty unhappy, so I did suggest that I could fly back earlier and my 7 month old would come in with her Dad, but to be completely honest, I think I only suggested it in the heat of the moment and because I knew they'd say no! I'd be devastated and weepy and miserable, but then again because she's too young. If it was at a time when she could talk... like 18 months or more, I think telephone calls would make it much easier. Or weepy-ier. Or both :)

Nelah said...

My husband and I traveled when our little girl were 18 months, simply because my in-laws wanted us to get away a bit from baby duties. It was two nights, 3 hours away but sure was the hardest thing. Interestingly, the thought of being away from baby doesn't seem to bother dads as much.

Once you got away though and know your little one is in good hands, you won't constantly worry. I am speaking from a perspective of a paranoid freak's standpoint and I did fine. Two nights are a good start, baby's step :)

Nelah*52NewDays

justine | lovemaki said...

it's been 3 years and my son has never really left my side. i take him everywhere with me:) though, i have been thinking of going on a little road trip, down there to New York sans toddler. i figure it will be too much and to try and go around a city with a child. i tried it in san francisco and failed. spent it in the hotel room with a very burnt out child:P

i'm sure that you'll feel more at ease with your mum watching him:)

xx

Petites Merveilles said...

We left our little one when she was about 14 mos old and only because it was our wedding anniversary. If I had my way I still would've taken her with us on that weekend. I missed her so much and I stressed so much but she had a great time with her grandparents and she behaved like an angel with them!
Still I totally understand the stress you're going through. Hope you have fun though!

Arbine said...

My husband and I haven't gone on a vacation by ourselves since before our girls were born. They are 2 and a half and 1. I have been very wanderlust-y lately. I really want to take a trip to Europe for at least two weeks. But since we are living off only one income (I'm a SAHM) and don't really have anyone who would be able to watch our girls for that long, I'll just have to visit Europe in my dreams. I know I would miss my girls terribly but I taking a vacation sans kids sounds fabulous. And I'd choose the Vancouver one. Have a great day!

Deanna (Silly Goose Farm) said...

I had postpartum depression with my first baby and couldn't WAIT to be without her (I know that sounds awful)... so my husband and I had two nights without her when she was 2 months old. Since my 2nd kid came so quickly after, I felt bad leaving my mom with essentially two little bitty babies, and I was in a completely different state of mind, so my husband and I didn't have any extended alone time until the kids were 6 months and 22 months. Schedules have been wacky lately, but usually my parents take the kids for a long weekend ever 6 weeks or so.

Yes. I'm incredibly wanderlusty right now!

My mom LOVES to travel, but my dad... notsomuch. So whenever my mom wanted to travel when I was growing up, she took me with her! It was a blast.

anilia said...

I finally left my guy for a three day weekend when he was just shy of two. I went to Miami by myself and it was wonderful. My parents also took him fr a week this summer and next weekend the hubby and I will be in NYC for a very fast one day, two night trip. It feels wonderful and so wonderful to be reunited. Do it!!

Deanna (Silly Goose Farm) said...

PS - leave your child(ren) alone with your parents for any extended period of time (even one night) and they will definitely come back with a bad habit!! Not an "awful" habit, more like a "Grammie says I can do it" sort of thing :-) I learned that the hard way!

Kellie @ Sasse Avenue said...

Hi Jo,

I envy you for being strong enough to make the decision to take a little time out. My big girl is six years old and my husband and I have never been away with out our girls in that time. He is worse than I am with separation anxiety. Hopeless :)

Kellie from Australia xx

Small Things Simple Pleasures said...

Our girl was two and she stayed with her grandparents (husband's parents) while we went skiing (2 days, 1 night). The grandparents live in another country to us (they live near a ski field) so it helped that we were all staying in their house together first so our trip away was like a holiday within a holiday. Fantastic for all of us.

KJ@letsgoflyakite said...

Great discussion topic! It took me over 2 years with my first (but she was born with serious health problems and I wanted to make sure she recovered) and a year with my second! I found it really difficult to go away while still nursing.

Audrey Leighton said...

don't go with whale watching! the others look incredible.

FRASSY

www.befrassy.com

Sarah said...

Ahhhhh, the Rock House for sure! We honeymooned there in 2008 and cannot wait to go back. We have a 4 month old and have planned a Mexican getaway in late January. I hope I'm ready to leave him. The thought right now gives me heart palpitations :•\

Daisygal said...

This is a topic that I have been thinking a lot about recently. I have never left my 2 ½ year old over night yet. I leave her when I go to work but the thought of being separated for a whole night brings me out in coldsweats! Thinking about it rationally I know she would be fine, it’s all me! Should of done it when she was younger also maybe cause it just the two of us. Anyway, have a fabulous break.

The Cyclist's Wife said...

Jamaica looks amazing. But Vancouver is absolutely beautiful as well. For baby leaving....I don't have a response yet! In my mind I think once I'm a full time mommy I'll say 6 months is an appropriate age to leave baby for a night or two. We'll see how I feel when it's a reality. :)

Amy Lauree said...

Our first vacation away from our daughter was when we went to NYC in May. We were gone for 7 days and left our 1.5 yr old with her grandparents!
We were really nervous at first and wrote out a huge list of instructions for them. The moment we got on the plane, we stopped worrying and had a great time because we knew she was in the best hands possible (they had lots of experience having her over for sleepovers previously though)!
Getting email updates helped too, just to hear how good everything was going at home. :)
It turned out great and i was so glad we just went for it!

Morgan & Imanol said...

The first time I was away for a night from my baby was at 15 months...when I stayed overnight at the hospital for deliver my second baby so I don't have experience yet. I think that once my little one is about a year or so I would feel okay leaving them both with grandparents for a trip away. I would do a week or two though because everywhere I want to go lately seems to be far. My parents travelled extensively internationally usually for 1-2 weeks at a time and I loved having my grandparents stay with us!

Josephine said...

Funny timing!
My son is 17 months old and I have spent a night away from him on two separate occasions: the first was when he was 11 months old – my mum stayed over to look after him while the husband and I went about 1.5 hrs away for my birthday. The second occasion was just last weekend: my husband and I stayed overnight in a fancy hotel to celebrate our 8th wedding anniversary while mother-in-law stayed with our son. Both times were awesome and we're going to try to spend a night away every two months or so!
Have a great time Joanna – you will miss Toby, but try to stay in the moment and enjoy the quality time with Alex ;-)

Faye said...

We first left our daughter for 3 nights when she was 9 months old- my mother cared for her while we went snowboarding in France for 4 days which was awesome. We missed her to pieces of course but it was so great to just be the two of us again.

We left her again for 7 nights when we went on our honeymoon to Thailand-this time she was 18 months old and she stayed with my parents. After about 4 nights I was really missing her and couldn't wait to get home and see her again but we still had
a great time chilling out.

Now we have another baby daughter too and we have moved from the UK to New Zealand. We have no family here to care for the girls and enable us to do the same thing again however we are meeting up with my parents, and my sister and her husband in Australia for a week over New Year to all stay in a big house by the sea and hang out and relax together so my husband and I will get some respite then! Can't wait :)

Enjoy your mini holiday :)

Annika said...

I nannied for years before having my own kids. A couple days is one thing, but I wouldn't dream of leaving my baby for as long as the people I have worked for (up to 3 weeks with an 8 month old! Yikes!)

Anonymous said...

I think a week or less is great! parents deserve the break and I believe the child doesn't mind as much as the mom, although the reunion is a joy for both.

Unknown said...

Our oldest son is 2 and half and my husband and I waited until he was a year old to take one night away. It was hard wonderful to reconnect with one another. We have another little boy and when he turns a year (our boys will be 1 and 3) they will stay with grandma and grandpa and we will be heading to Kauai for 6 nights sans babies to celebrate our 10th anniversary. It will be difficult but I think it is essential that couples have time alone to reconnect and remember the reasons why you chose to be a family in the first place. Traveling with babies/small children is beautiful but it is a totally different experience. Parents need breaks, too.

joolee said...

i think it depends on the child - we've left our three at different times. our first, about a year old, our second, about 8 months old, our third, about a year old. obviously, it's easiest when they're done nursing, and our three have all refused to nurse around 9 or 10 months, so that was easy for me!! :)

i must admit that it IS hard to be away for awhile, though. 4 or 5 days away is enough to make me miss my little buddies. and like other commenters have said, i think it worries us as parents more than it worries the kids! usually my kids are happy to stay with other people or relatives. they have a blast! i've realized (and it's taken three kids to do so...) that when they're with someone i know and trust, i have nothing to worry about. every mom and dad deserves a break without kiddos on the mind. and they're THAT MUCH CUTER when you get back!! :)

Unknown said...

How old is Toby?
I and my husband traveled from Iceland to Denmark for 2 nights, when my oldest daughter was 1 1/2 yr old.
I thought i could not do this, but it was really good for us.
And knowing that your child is with her grandparents is good.
I would recommend to go.
Gyda.

K said...

My parents left me with my aunt and uncle for a mini vacation every few months when I was a kid. I'm sure it was great for their relationship (they are still among the most happily married people I know) and I loved it (my aunt would always get me new pajamas for the sleep overs :)

Allison said...

have an AMAZING time, joanna! i don't have kids, but i feel that it is extremely important for couples to have 'adult' time, even if that's just a quick date night around the corner :) honestly, you will worry more than toby will, i'm sure. he won't remember the time his parents took a quick vacation, but you'll remember it always as the 'first' time :) my parents took a weeklong trip when my brother and i were young (6 and 4, maybe?), and i remember my mom left little treats for us in paper bags with the date they could be opened while we were being watched by our grandparents - what fun! :)

Jennifer C. Webb said...

heading to Paris with my husband on Monday for a week...first real (longer than weekend) vacation since having our girls (3 and 18mths.) Not worried about the children, worried about the caregivers...the kids will have a great time with their grandparents and special sitter. Just hope the grandparents will too! Love Motherhood Mondays

Elle Vee said...

You will have a great time! Enjoy one another as people, not parents, again!

I left my husband and son to do extended yoga teacher training in Mexico for 2 weeks when my son was 14 months old. That sounds crazy, but I was ready (and because breastfeeding didn't work for us, I gave up pumping at 8 months, I wasn't breaking that bond). My parents came and helped out my husband and things went along fine.

This time it will be even harder. My son is now 2, and I'm leaving the family one last time to complete my training in India for 3 weeks. My son and I are very close, we spend all day together, and because he's much more of an interactive person now, there is more to miss. It's going to hurt, but missing those we love isn't always such a bad thing. Perspective is a gift!

house of violetta said...

vancouver fo sure. spent 2 weeks for our honeymoon in the city, vancouver island and skiing in Whistler. best trip ever.

Mary said...

It was about a year for us. I remember how nervous I was, and then I remember that about two hours into the trip I realized that I was totally relaxed! You'll be fine, Toby will be fine. You'll both be the better for it. Have fun!

Tess said...

The hotel in Jamaica looks awesome! I would go for that one!

jen fuller said...

my baby is 7 months and although it sounds fantastic...i don't know that I'm ready to travel yet (it's me, not him :)
im a firm believer that some time away makes you a better mother, though, so maybe i need to chill and take a trip to Vancouver ;)

Annie said...

I left my two-year-old & five-year-old with family for a full week this last May to visit my sister in England, and then had a weekend getaway with my husband in Paris. It was amazing, and while it took a LOT of organizing, planning, and way too much worrying on my part, it was marvelous for us all, kids included. Sleepovers with family for my older daughter are a regular event, and she loves getting away for the night. Leaving two is more complicated. And now that I'm pregnant with number three, I wonder whether it will be a good decade before I get a night "off". Sigh.

Easing your way in to vacations away sans babe are a good idea. And if you're having any thoughts at all of having a second kid, take full advantage now of opportunities for adult vacations, because leaving two (or more!) with someone else is always more complicated.

(p.s. your suggested vacay in b.c. looks marvelous. Note though that it's in Tofino, which is on Vancouver Island - not to be confused with the City of Vancouver, which is on the mainland of Canada proper.)

Meg said...

love that you featured tofino, on vancouver island where i grew up! gorgeous scenery, friendly people, beautiful ocean... not much compares with vancouver island :) of course i go back to visit family every chance i get, but i don't know if, given the choice, i could pass up a trip to jamaica!

Anonymous said...

Long ago I had a chance to travel to paris/rome in short notice. we left our daughter who was 1 1/2 at the time with her dad's family. I cried so much & called home very often. My sister brought our daughter to the airport to pick us up. My little one was mad & wouldn't look at me for over an hour. I made a promise that one of us would stay home w/ her. 8 mths later I had another chance to travel with my dad & sisters out of the country. that was the only & last trip we took with my dad. my husband stayed home w/ our daughter. i was so depressed the whole trip & again kept calling home everything other day. I changed my flight to go home a week early. I vowed never to travel without my daughter again. she is 20 now & I'll be going to paris this xmas. I'm already depressed about not having her with me on the trip, and during the Holidays. She doesn't want to go.

Giulia said...

My parents went away when a new baby was 3 months old...usually to NYC for 5 days.

It's never easy but I think it's great to get away.

BTW, that's a photo by Robert Doisneau....

Tara said...

My husband and I just traveled to the coast of Maine for 7 days without our 18 month old. The first few days were hard, but I knew our son was in good hands with our parents, plus we were having such a great time, it got easier to relax and enjoy our time together!

Jodie said...

It is hard to leave, but I do think it is really good for a marriage and for our soul. I kick myself every time I go on my 1-2 times a year getaway, that I spend so much time missing my guys. THEN, when I get home and am juggling life, I wish I had enjoyed it more and not been so homesick for them.

Don't make my mistakes, (bawling under a shower in Barcelona when I should've been enjoying taking a long shower) enjoy every second!

PS. It gets easier the older they get!

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Anonymous said...

We had the opportunity to go to San Francisco for three nights when my son was eleven months old. He stayed with my parents and, as someone else has already mentioned, I was more worried about them than him (I knew he was in good hands). The moment of parting was difficult (for me, not my son!) and after that it was awesome and as many have said, refreshing. I highly recommend it.

Chelsea said...

Normally I'd say Jamaica, but I'm a Vancouver Island girl currently living in Australia, so I think I'd go for the Wickanninish Inn (the last one) because it is A-MAZ-ing. Especially for storm-watching!

Thea said...

Growing up on Vancouver Island, I have to say that Tofino is such an amazing place!! And the Wick Inn is so beautiful. If you ever make it out there, make sure to go out on a whale watching tour that takes you to Hot Springs Cove! Have a wonderful weekend sans baby ;)

just tututiny said...

Um - how about all of them? They all look gorgeous so I can't decide! We also have 2 toddlers and have not taken a vacation for a couple of years now. We didn't even have a honeymoon either cause we had the baby right away. Our last trip was 3 years ago on a cruise to bahamas w/o the kids but we missed them so much! Can't wait to see where you guys decide to go!

http://justtututiny.blogspot.com/
Thu

Gaby [The Vault Files] said...

My mother-in-law left my sister-in-law for a whole month when she was only 6 weeks old to go to Europe with her best friend's (all couples). We think that it is so crazy that we still joke about it in the family ;)
I couldn't do it. But now that Matthew is 18 months I think I could do 3 days, 7 days maybe? It depends on who is going to watch him too (surely not my mother-in-law Ha!).
PS: I also shared tips on traveling with a baby, sans husband and for loooooong hours ;)

The Whip said...

it was so hard at first but it turned out so fine. we went away for 5 days to mexico. playa del carmen. stayed at hotel deseo. my husbands parents came to LA and baby sat my son and they had a blast. such great bonding time! sometimes i think they too need a break from us. have fun!

Daisy said...

I'd pick to go to Jamaica..those view: marvelous :)

Anonymous said...

We went on a 10-day trip when our little lady was nine-months old. It was a ridiculous vacation - 7 nights on a private yacht, traveling the Greek Islands. Literally once in a lifetime. I'm not sure if I would have been ready to leave her, but we couldn't pass this up!

Oh, and it turned out to be AWESOME. And she was still cute when we got back.

Anonymous said...

We got engaged at the rockhouse hotel back in march of 2008! What a perfect hotel nestled into the cliffs of negril with water and scenary that will take your breath away!! Everyday was better than the next, especially when we got the courage to jump off that bridge you have pictured!!

missmehoneybee said...

Jamaica baby...but if I were leaving my baby I would have a hard time leaving the country. My kiddo is turning two in Dec. and we still haven't spend a night a way. I would love to, but man it would be hard. I think it is important for married couples though and Toby will be in the best of hands. Have a great time. One thing that always helps me is when my mom who usually watches our lil guy text messages pictures.

Brittany said...

My son is a few days shy of 9 months old. He was in the hospital for the first 27 days of his life because he was born with gastroschisis, a very life threatening birth defect. Because I was away from him every night it was slightly easy to leave him and he stayed with my mom for 1 night when he was 7 weeks old. That's been the only time though, and we only travelled 45 minutes away. My fiance and I are getting married in April and we're spending 7 glorious days in Hawaii on our honeymoon. That'll be the first time we every really leave our son. He'll be 15 months old, and I'm sure it's going to kill me. Have a great time on your vacation! :)

penelope said...

The third choice looks absolutely delightful, and so relaxing. I think your compromise of 2 nights is an excellent start.

the easter parade said...

my son is 2.5 years and we are just starting to feel ready to have a night away. tofino is one of the most wondrous places on earth.(really, its life changing). the wick is so beautiful. storm season is really cozy. a few nights and you will fall in love with your honey all over again.

Julia said...

I remember when my parents went off on a vacation when my sister and I must have been in early elementary school. It was super exciting because we got to stay with our grandparents and sleep at their house! Quite overwhelmingly exciting for a kid... Also when my parents returned, they brought us gifts. So I would say I was rather fine with them leaving for a bit :)

Yanira Garza said...

I went away to NYC for 48 hours for work in April, alone. No husband, no child. I was a wreck up until. I will say it was the best night sleep in (almost) 2 yrs and I did feel guilty for thinking that. The hubs and I went back to NYC (me for work, he tagged along) in August sans baby and we had a blast. Our 8 day vacation in September though was taken with our princess. 1-4 nights is my max and I have to stay in the same country if I am going without my baby. It is tough and I know my mother (and my in-laws) turn their noses at it but sometimes a few days with Grandma will not hurt them.

http://glammom.onsugar.com

reneeish said...

My baby boy is turning one in November. A few days ago, I had to make a day trip to visit a friend who is in a coma in the hospital. The flight is 20 minutes, a drive would take half a day, that's all I can say about how far away it is (I'm not good with calculating distance!).

I was there for one day, flew there 8am and back home 10pm. My in-laws were taking care of my baby. And I missed him like crazy! The in-laws even wanted to have him sleep over, but I just couldn't stand not seeing him for one more minute, so we picked him up and brought him home. I'm still breastfeeding, so I was so engorged and in pain, too.

I guess I might feel differently if the trip was a happy one, say on holiday in a nice place. But I think I would still miss my baby!

Notes from Holly St. said...

This is an ongoing conversation in our house. My husband is definitely more comfortable with the idea and I can't stand the thought of leaving my baby for more than one night. I'm actually happy to hear that I'm not alone! But we've both been so overworked lately that we are discussing the idea of going away for two nights. I know I'll miss my baby every second but I also know that it's necessary for our relationship and well being.

miss sarah said...

Aw, it's sometimes really hard experiencing awesome stuff without your little dude. Our most extensive jaunt without Dexter was 3 weeks, when we went to Hong Kong and left him at home with my parents. Every time I took the MTR (subway) or a train, I knew D would have loved to be there.

BUT. The jet lag over to the pacific is epic at the best of times, and HK is crowded. And busy. And pushy. So we did it by ourselves.

First trip alone was when D was 8 months. We went to D.C. and NY and it was fabulous!

Laurie Jones said...

I have a 13 year old daughter and I will tell you this, it doesn't get easier leaving them, you may think you need a break but once your gone they are always on your mind or at least that's how it is for me. Recently our daughter left us for a camping trip for 3 days and my husband and I had a terrific time catching up, hanging out and being just us and as nice as it was to get a little break I was so happy to have her back home!! Its way harder for us then it is for them though!! I think we need them more then they need us!!

juniper said...

great question! we left our baby isaiah (now 16 months) when he was 3.5 months old so my husband could officiate a wedding at dunton hot springs. i was terrified to get on the plane-- i thought i'd panic and tell them to turn around b/c i'd left my baby behind. but once I got over the anxiety of separation, it was an amazing weekend. so wonderful to spend time with my sweetie and with dear friends. but it took us over a year to do it again! we just returned from a 4 day trip to pt reyes and the russian river valley. we have our second baby due in january and realized this might be our last chance to get away for a while. it was so fabulous to lie by the pool reading and hike in the woods and sleep in and have quiet conversations. so i definitely recommend getting away before you have #2!! my mom can handle one baby for 4 days, but finding someone to handle 2 may be a different story... ;) have a fabulous time getting away with your honey! toby will be totally fine and it will sweeten everything to get time to yourselves and then return to his smiling face. xo

nina corvallo said...

i think it depends on how far away one travels. Going away to Fire Island or Woodstock (and the baby being in NYC) is a different story from boarding a plane and being in different countries. I say to each their own. But I think time w/o baby is important. Enjoy your romantic getaway!

Jo said...

My daughter was born in England in May 1999. In the Oct my husband and I went to Brussels for the weekend for my 30th birthday. I was mega excited as I felt I needed a break as I was a full time mum but all we talked about was her and how much we missed her and my hubby was worse than me, we even had to catch an earlier train home

Jaynie said...

I think its too young - for me anyway I'm not sure my daughter would be old enough to grasp that we havent abandoned her. At this stage I'd do 1 night but no more - but hey - I have a hard time leaving the dogs overnight too. Really its whatever you're comfortable with and if the bub is good with the person he's being left with.

Maria said...

We're in the middle of planning our honeymoon and our heads are spinning with all the possibilities! I'd really like to think that I'd be fine with leaving our baby for a little while to go travelling on our own as I LOVE to travel and as I'm a bit of an adrenaline junkie/adventure seeker, most of the time, our holidays aren't kid-friendly.

Maria xx
www.cheekypinktulip.blogspot.com

Simone said...

I know this is secondhand advice, since I don't have a baby, but my best friend and her husband made a pact to go on one holiday a year without their baby. They both love traveling, especially traveling together. They decided it was important to uphold their passions from before little Julian came along. They started just before Jules turned one. Now he's four. And they've been all across Europe and to South America. Each time it's a week and it's their opportunity to be just the two of them.

Again, it's secondhand advice but seeing how in love and connected they are as a couple and as a family it's advice I've noted for my future. She's said it's hard but her parents raised her so she's confident they can take care of her son, plus she needs to take time to focus on that other dude in her life, her husband.

Stephanie said...

We also LOVE traveling with our 16 month old (we have been to London, Vienna, Salzburg, Cornwall, Santa Cruz, Hawaii, Minneapolis, various getaways in Washington state, Portland, etc.) - we are now living in London and will take a night away to Paris when my parents come for two weeks in December. I think we have worked our way up to leaving for a few days and I keep reminding myself that she will actually have more fun with her nana and grandpa getting spoiled here than being stuck in the buggy or ergo in Paris. :)

Have a great trip. I am sure you will miss him, but the reunion you have will be so sweet.

Nanu fait dodo said...

I shall never be ready...

macaca grava por cima said...

good question! We're still trying to find an answer for that! We are travelling abroad for the first time in our son's first birthday, on December... With him, of course!!! Without him, we need to give it a tought ;-)

April & May said...

We just had a holiday of nine days to Aruba without our 22 month boy. Never would have expected that I would do something like that, but I did. My boyfriend came up with the idea to really have some time together and rest. Had to think about it but finally decided to do so. The next day we booked our holiday I was getting really nervous thinking that I could not go without my little boy. But we did and had a wonderful time. The first day when leaving was terrible, during the holiday I had my moments when seeing other little kids but overall it went ok.

And how great it was to see him again when coming home, his smile, little kisses and his joy to see us. He had a great time at my parents so that was a great relief for me not to worry about that.

I am a little bit proud that I handled it but will wait for a while to do it again...:)

VLS said...

Our little girl was exactly eight weeks old when we left her for thirty hours with my mom and sister, who have successfully raised five children between them. We were visiting my folks in Minneapolis for a few weeks and were invited to a wedding in Chicago to take place during that visit. It was simply not envisageable to take an eight week-old along to a city wedding where we'd not have a car of our own or room for all the items one must travel with for a baby, and we simply didn't have the cash to buy a ticket for my mom to come along. So we decided to leave tiny girl in capable hands.
Our baby is strictly breastfed so I spent the first ten days of our visit with my folks pumping and collecting milk to build up an enormous stock in my mom's freezer. I'd read that baby needs one ounce for every hour you're away, so I made sure to leave ten extra ounces, just in case a bottle spilled or our flight got delayed.
Knowing there was all this milk in the freezer and the fact that my mom and sister had spent ample time with my newborn to get to know her likes & dislikes, her cries, and her favorite positions for being cuddled and rocked to sleep, were what made it possible to get on that plane without her. It also helped that our little one was already sleeping a minimum of six hours in a row overnight.
It took a lot of trust from my husband and me, and a ton of patience from my sister and mom as they reassured me time and time again before the trip, and it was well worth it. A quick flight to beautiful Chicago for a romantic wedding with close friends? Dancing, drinking, laughing, and playing with just my husband the way we did for the first five and a half years of our marriage? Yes and yes! And the icing on the cake was the next day when we got to fly back to the life we now love as three.

Leanne said...

The hardest part: the journey back. While you're away you are excited and occupied, but as soon as you head for home you just want to see them NOW NOW NOW! x

Margarida said...

I live in Azores, this beautifully set of 9 islands in the middle of the atlantic ocean. VANCOUVER is the thing for me. I left my boys for the first time to go to the next island and climb PIco our highest mountain with my husband and 2 friends. The boys staid with my sister in low. She had the worst time and when the youngest grabbed dads trousers and cried I got the " back home call". And that's what I did. But it was perfect because as I went up the mountain I knew that it was a journey I had to do for my boys. We have to be able to wallk away so they learn that is ok to leave and to come back. Today they are 17 and 18 and they love to travel and also love to come back to the island. That's what I thought them. To love life.

macaca grava por cima said...

Funny Margarida, I immediatlly tought about Azores when I saw the wale picture!!!

Michal said...

my baby is 15 months old and I only left him for one night while we staycationed in the city. I left him in amazing hands, the only ones i could trust, and rushed back to him the next morning. I couldnt relax, my mind wasnt at ease and my heart hurt. My husband would love to go on a real vacation with me but i cant bear the thought of being on a plane going thousands of miles and hundreds of miles per hour away from my baby.

Leigh said...

Just had our first weekend away from our little bunny Stella two weekends ago. We went to a friend's wedding in NYC. It was hard to turn OFF Momma mode, and in fact it required a few good mojitos when we first arrived. Prior to this intervention by my hubbie I was basically a mess! After the trip to "Cuba" in the village I felt MUCH better and was able to be Leigh for the rest of the weekend, instead of "Mom". Have FUN!!!

Louise de Pour Toujours... said...

Bonjour,

I'm leaving today for a week in Paris ALONE! My first vacation alone (my kids are 9, 7 and 4). When I bought the plane ticket I was so excited thinking "Wow going to Paris, seeing old friends". But now I'm thinking "Leaving Montreal and my family" and it's not as exciting... But I promised a tone of surprises to the kids and now I have to go get them...

Burberry Baby said...

In this article you have talked about the Christmas tree, it is on of the enjoyable festival for us so we have to enjoyed it with glad and happiness.

Burberry Baby said...

This is perfect travel tips that you have post over here, and it is not so easy that it sounds to travel with baby. We have to need some ideas to enjoy our traveling.

Split Testing said...

Split Testing


HI Joanna, Such a lovely places where you can get a nice vacation and have some relaxing moment together with your loved ones. :)

Michele said...

When my daughter was six months old we left her with her grandparents and went away for two nights to Fez. It was really hard partly because I was still breastfeeding and partly because she was so small. When she was a year and half, we went to Florence for two nights and it was WONDERFUL. Being child-free with my husband, I felt like a teenager sneaking out for the night. When she was two and a half, we left her for ten days to go to Peru. It was such an amazing trip that nine months later, our daughter got a little brother!

Going away from time to time has been great for our couple. It's also allowed our daughter to have a really close relationship with her grandparents that's separate from us.

Enjoy your weekend!! Who knows maybe Toby will get a sibling out of it. :)

Jessica Ochs said...

Our daughter is going to be 6 this month and I realized that the only night we have spent alone in those 6 years was the night I was in labor in the hospital with my son. Very sad. Next year will be my 10th anniversary and we are planning to get away- ALONE! I can't wait!!!!

Anonymous said...

My little Henry Bear is almost 8 months and I miss him when he sleeps. However, I also long for moments away. It's the greatest conflict of feelings I have ever experienced. We have yet to leave him with a sitter or an out of town grandma?

happygirlgo said...

Funny you should bring this up... My boyfriend and I have just plucked up the courage to book our first trip away from our 12 month old wee boy - it's only for one night and it is only 3 hours away (York, from Edinburgh), but I CANNOT WAIT. A wander around the town, a quiet meal and best of all, a lie in the next morning. Of course I will miss my munchkin but I think it's important to have time away. Enjoy your trip Joanna!

Angela Burgess said...

My daughter is now 16. It doesn't get any easier, but I find that is is all about who you leave them with. I was very luck to have my parents, to watch Maddie when we went to Hawaii. She was a year old, but to prepare an overnight or two is a good idea. This is all great practice too, for the time that is coming when they pick will whom to be with in your absence. Cheers Angela

courtney said...

We have a 14 month old. We are actually heading to NYC this weekend for a getaway & really looking forward to it! Sleeping in, eating good food, no debating on whether or not I should have one more glass of wine because, well, I won't have to wake up at 6!

We left her for the first time at 1 year for a weekend wedding (we were only 2 hours away). It was perfect... to be close enough in case you needed to get back right away. Two nights is perfect! Any longer and you start missing your little bambino too much. However, I think it probably gets a little easier each time. Bottomline, it's very good for your relationship to have mommy & daddy time ALONE without baby. It doesn't have to be a long trip, a day trip or 1 night away works too. Have fun!!!

Patricia Villamil said...

Lovely post! My baby is only 6 months old and still nurses so we are hoping that after her first birthday we'd go to Paris for our wedding anniversary!

BTW Jo, have you heard of the woman artist in Brooklyn who's planning on giving birth as an installation in a gallery. I wonder what you thought of that and what your readers think? I blogged about it this morning. It's all over the NYC wire. I saw it in USAToday.

Carli said...

I find it really easy - we both have very loving hands-on and not too old ;) parents that love our kids. Every two years we've had 10 days away alone, it has been wonderful and refreshing for our marriage and we both pine for them a bit but appreciate the time to sleep and read and explore, one day it will just be us again and we want an us to return to and not have it lost. Currently we are touring Japan and South Korea with our two older children (they're 6 and 8) because they are ready for this and we wanted them to soak it all in but the babies have been left at home with Gramma and an aunt. We really feel it is strengthening our family bonds with our older two children because they often get less of our attention when the babies require so much more hands-on care.
Enjoy your time away (do 5 days next time!)

Erin Morris said...

I left my 5 month old son for two nights for the first time recently to take a much needed girls weekend with my sister to visit our little sister in New York. It was very dificult to leave him, but he did great. The hardest part for me (and my sisters) was the constantly pumping to keep up my milk supply! I even pumped on the train, much to my sister's dismay! I think the next trip away will have to be AFTER I finish nursing!

Adeline said...

It was for our 10-year anniversary. We truffle-hunted in Gubbio, Italy and took off for 5 days end-to-end. It was get on the plane, spend a few days and get off the plane kind of trip! Our first trip without the kids who were 5.5, 3.5 and 1.5 years old. They had a ball without us and we had a blast without them... though I must admit that I missed the kids the most (the kids had too much fun to miss the parents!). My husband was just way too happy to have a "we" time :)
I'm sure you will miss Toby but have a blast, Joanna!

Isabelle said...

I love all hotels but that bridge in Jamaica is just too perfect to be for real.
I'd love to spend my day snorkeling over there... hello back sunburn !

Enjoy your weekend... they day that distance makes the heart grow fonder... but no one needs that with a little as adorable as Toby

Elizabeth said...

When I was little, my parents traveled together for my father's business trips about once or twice a year, starting when I was about 4 or 5. My grandmother and her best frien always watched us. Although I remember my parents being gone and missing them,it was SO fun to have my grandmother watch us and do lots of special little things together. Hope that makes you feel at least a bit better!

No Drama Mama said...

The first time I traveled without my daughter, she was 7 months old, and I wasn't comfortable at all with it (she apparently felt the same way and went on a hunger strike). That was for work, and I didn't have a choice. Now that Miss L is over two, DH and I are considering a weekend away, for our anniversary in February. So by then she will be nearly 3. I think that's old enough, lol!

jenn said...

My sister is in labor right now! I can't wait to be an auntie!

ana {bluebirdkisses} said...

we love travelling with our son, and so far he's been great, whether we're flying to europe, or somewhere closer, he's a dream. However we have been talking about going away for our 3 year anniversary after baby J's 1 year birthday..and I'm torn as well. I want to go away alone, and I think it would be good not just for us to have some time to recharge, but also just to spend some quality time just the two of us {like it used to be}. But I think I am going to miss J terribly, so I'm a bit on the fence right now. I don't know just yet.

Hilla Hryniszyn said...

i wish i could just jump in ! :)
clear waters, relaxing time...
take a look at my blog:)

gyen said...

I have eight kids, ages 16 months to 16 years. I usually stop nursing when the next baby comes, so we haven't been away overnight since 1994, back when we were too poor to afford a vacation! It's only a season, and now that I think we're done with new babies, we might go away for our 20th anniversary in 2012. I will no doubt cry because I miss the kids so much, but I will also no doubt have a blast because of spending all that time alone with the fabulous hunky guy I've been married to for two decades!

Izzy said...

My husband and I went to Mexico for a 9-day getaway when our daughter was 18-months old. After about five days, we were missing our baby, and ready to get back home. We did have a good time, and now that we're expecting baby #2, I want to get away for a quick weekend because I know leaving two will be hard.

Anonymous said...

I love the top picture - classic and beautiful!

Rachel said...

I'm a nanny and I'm currently staying with my 2 boys while their parents take a week-long vacation to Mexico. I've been writing emails and things to keep them feeling attached while they're away. It's definitely harder on them than it is on the kids. I think the most important part is having someone at home that you trust-- at least that's what they kept saying before they left. Being here 24/7 by myself (I'm a 23 yr old with no kids myself) has really given me an even better perspective for how difficult parenting is, so I think if you can get away for some R&R with your spouse, you should definitely take the opportunity!! Someday I hope I have someone that will help me out so I can get away too!

emily said...

We went away and left my son with my mom for 1 night to attend a friend's wedding when my son turned one (incidentally it was his birthday weekend...) I was amazed at how calm I was about it, how easy it was. On our way back home we realized we wished we had taken the whole weekend. We are now planning at least 2 more trips without the little one!

ohnomyboots said...

One lucky part about being a single momma is that I can leave my girl with her dad and go on vacation by myself! I first did so when she was 1.5 years. Definitely had moments of aching heart- but I honestly don't recall those as well as I do the vaction itself.

Lia said...

My oldest is going to turn 4 in November and he has only been away from me when I gave birth to my youngest and one sleepover at his grandparents!! Not that he could not do it more often, in fact, he did not want to come home when he stayed with his grandparents. I guess what happened is that by the time he was old enough to spend a few nights away, I had another baby, so my husband and I never got a chance to have a vacation away. Maybe when my baby gets older...

Jodi said...

With my first, I did a very brief overnight when he was 8 months and I basically ran home the next morning to be with him. My 2nd was 5 months and I left for two nights with a group of friends for a girl's retreat. I thought I wouldn't make it, but I found myself really enjoying the break. I think the point is to focus on the NOW. It's a waste if you spend the whole time wanting to be somewhere else. And if you do, once you get home you'll kiss the baby and then think "Why didn't I enjoy myself?"

Kelsi said...

I am going to Austin for the film festival this week. Then in a few weeks I'm going to Atlanta for the first time (I live in Milwaukee). I definitely love to travel, though I don't have any children so I wouldn't know how that might affect my vacation enjoyment. Have a great time with Alex!

Ali said...

Starting when I was nine months old, my parents would go away for one week each year (my sister and I were left with our deeply-trusted babysitter). My mom would leave behind a small present for each night that they were gone, like Lisa Frank pencils (I was child of the 90's), notebooks, and sometimes a slightly larger gift that my sister and I would share (often a Disney movie). We would get the gift each night after dinner and sometimes our babysitter would even hide the gift somewhere in the house and my sister and I had to play "hot or cold" until it was found. Like I mentioned, the gifts were fairly small, but they made the week exciting for my sister and me and we didn't feel like we were jipped because we stayed at home.

margaret said...

Maybe the key is not thinking you are leaving your baby, but you are giving him an opportunity to bond with his grandmother.. I know the times I spent with my grandparents were always magical.

freckle face said...

i was basically raised by my grandmother. my parents worked a lot. and then they divorced. and they work even more now. i miss family vacations.. its a rare treat for me. my mother moved a couple states over when i was in high school and my dad travels the world for work. he's home probably only half of the year. now im the world traveler.

j said...

My husband and I had our first get away sans kids, to Hawaii this past summer. Our daughters are 5 and 3.5 yrs old. I read them the book The Berenstein Bears: Week at Grandma's 2 weeks prior to our departure. It was helpful. It was for 3 nights. My husband was much more distraught than I! LOL! I was very excited about having 1) only 1 piece of carry on luggage, and 2) reading magazines and books on the plane.

Wendy Frances said...

Go, relax and take comfort that Toby is on a vacation from you too! He is spending his time being coddled and spoilt by the loving Grandma, having the time of his life too! I realized this when dh and myself went to the Bahamas for 5 nights and our children stayed with my parents. They didn't even miss us! They defintely had a better time than us!

Kate said...

We left our little one overnight with grandparents when he was about 4 months old, for our 5-year wedding anniversary. He did great, and they did great - but we picked him up pretty early the next morning! :) It's a really nice feeling to miss him, and look forward to seeing him, instead of any little resentments that creep in (naturally) the more time that goes by depriving you and your spouse of time alone. We really put time together as a priority, and just make ourselves do it. We're thinking of doing another overnight away when he'll be nine months old (December). We're really ready for another night away NOW, so maybe for us this natural every-three-months-cycle will be important. Figure out what works best for you and Alex. I say, make yourself go and have a swell time!

Kate Godowski said...

We took a trip to Napa with friends when our son was 6 months old. He stayed with his Nana (grandma) and had a great time! Luckily we were in a place where it was expected that you would be sipping (guzzling) wine all day, so that helped a lot - self medication. I missed him a ton and couldn't wait to get home, but it was really good for my husband and I to reconnect. Have fun!

Anonymous said...

i can still remember when my parents went on a week long cruise without me. i was three and was totally, achingly, inconsolably unhappy is missed them so much. i've been reluctant to leave my kids for long because i remember it so distinctly still:(
i'm sorry to be a wet blanket.

pam said...

we went away for 4 days this past weekend. we don't have children but i had tears in my eyes dropping the dog off at her boarding facility and called them twice while away. my request for our next vacation (for 5-year anniversary this february).... any place with "resort" in the name!

The Postage Service said...

I was the nanny of a little boy who's parents decided to go to Mexico for a week when he was approximately 8 or 9 months old. He was used to spending the entire day with me and didn't think much of it at first, but after about 24 hours he started to become distraught, looking around for his folks every time we walked into a new room and crying when they weren't there. It was heartbreaking, especially since he had already gone through the experience of being separated from his birth mother, as these were his adoptive parents. They didn't even call to check in on him until they had landed back in the states. I'm all for some personal escapism, but 2 days seems like a max for kids under 1 yr.

Megan said...

It's nice to hear other Mom's thoughts, like this one. I am a videographer and have traveled to New York & San Fransisco and my son is only 3 months old. It's been sooo hard to leave him and I swear he grows bigger for the 3 days I'm gone. Thanks for being open and honest in your posts.

Holly said...

The first time we left our son, he was 15 months old. I was really worried, but we HAD to go. We only had a few days notice before we left, but my son magically weaned himself during that time, so I knew he'd be okay. And he had a great time with Nana and Papa.

Fast forward to this summer...boy is almost 3 and my husband and I went on a 50 mile backpacking trip while our son stayed with Nana and Papa again. He had the hardest time and missed us constantly. Groan!

I think it's easier leaving when kids are younger, but the sooner you start, and the oftener you go, they'll be used to it, and you'll build their trust that you'll always be back.

Have a fabulous time, wherever you go!

Tara Tufo said...

I would love a romantic getaway with my husband, but I'm still having a hard time being away durning the work day from my 4 1/2 month old. I know that I'm going to have to do an overnight work trip, so I'll have to deal sooner than later (even though I'm sure I'll try to figure a way to bring them in tow).

Your two day trip sounds wonderful! I hope you both have a fantastic weekend!

ps...regarding the pics, I would totally pick the Rockhouse in Jamaica. I have wanted to go there forever.

Ciara said...

Oh, Joanna! This post couldn't be more relevant. My Hub and I are leaving our nine month old son with his grandparents for two nights next weekend. I'm so torn between being positively giddy over the idea of having my man all to myself and the fear of missing my little boy so much that it's not worth it. Were going to a wedding so fingers crossed we'll be nice and distracted and able to relax.

Will be thinking of you x

Anonymous said...

I have a 2 year old and a 10 week old. I havent left my 2 year old for more than 2 nights and now that I have another and nursing again it will be a while before we get any real alone vacations. I guess I worry too much about my babies and I don't know if I'd enjoy being away from them for more than a few days.

Emily said...

interesting topic and conversation. i travel a fair bit for work (a night or two nights here and there-maybe 8 trips a year). my son is 4 and i really don't have a desire to vacation without him. that said, my husband and i aren't big vacationers. most of our vacations are spent visiting family or vacationing with family. we have no local family so maybe we'd feel differently if we did and our son knew his grandparents in a daily sense (as opposed to seeing them a few times a year). i got to travel a ton prior to having a child and so did my husband so we partly feel as if now that we have a child, and he's our only child, we don't desire to vacation away from him. we do have a regular babysitter for date nights but i have a super hard time envisioning myself ever wanting a vacation without my son.

shisomama said...

we left our son with my parents for a long weekend when he was 6 months, and it hadn't occurred to me until the night before the flight that something bad could happen to both of his parents at the same time! so we haven't taken a real vacation without our kids since then (he's now 6), but I'd like to, though I might prefer to fly separately. pretty morbid, right?

Anonymous said...

Well, it's 25 years and counting. I have an ongoing and serious case of wanderlust, which I satisfied by 1. Moving every 5 years due to dh's job and 2. Taking my children when we travel. I have three children, ages 25, 24 and 17. They had most stamps in their passport by the time they were 3 than most people have in their life. We did everything from self-drive canal boat trips when they were 8,7 and 1 (did I do the math right?) to sleep in the hay in Switzerland when they were a tad older. I do understand, however, that some people need that couple time away and I think it's fine. I'm sure the grandparents would love to get rid of you for a week so they can do what they want with the wee ones.

Anna Claire said...

I realize this sounds crazy now...but my husband and I took a 10-day trip to the UK (somewhere I've ALWAYS wanted to go) when our son was 11 months old. When we booked the trip, he was super little and for some reason I thought, oh yeah, no problem. But honestly, although I cried when we left him with my parents, we had a great time. We missed him bunches, but talked on the phone and my parents sent us pics & videos constantly. I was ready to be home after about 7 days, but I don't regret doing it. My husband and I reconnected and it felt exactly like it did when we were first married! Just go - Toby will have an exciting time with his loving grandparents and get to experience a little bit of independence :) It's good for him, and good for you guys, too!

Karin said...

I've stayed at the RockHouse in Jamaica...glorious! Although, I would recommend staying at Tensing Penn which is right down the road from the RockHouse, I've stayed at both places and we preferred TP. But Negril is beautiful on it's own, so anywhere along the cliffs has a view of their magnificent sunsets! :)

Have fun on your little trip!

Tristen said...

We just got back from a week in Puerto Vallarta at Casa Velas, it was incredible! I would highly recommend it.

You could bring Toby an awesome wooden iguana toy as a consolation prize : )

Mallory said...

My daughter was 5 months old when we left her with my mom for seven days while we took a vacation to Hawaii. I had months to prepare for the trip so that helped. I was honestly OK with leaving her. Until day 4 hit and I had a massive melt down and cried an entire day in my hotel room.

Thankfully, there is skype and face time and my mom sent me little updates everyday with pictures. It helped and I knew she was in good hands so I did enjoy myself. Except for that 4th day.

Tracey said...

Jeez. We have 3 kids. The most we have had away was one day and one night...this is not by choice but by the fact that we have no one to look after them. Both my parents are dead. N's dad might as well be and his mum is on her own, brought up 4 kids and made it clear she would not bring up any grandchildren so more than a night is a big no no. If someone was happy to take them i'd definitely be totally happy with 5 days...maybe 7...two weeks, no. Then i'd feel like i was a mum who didn't care enough about her kids but one week = heaven. Be thankful for your mum Jo and use her while you still can! xx

adrianne said...

I am really hoping for a husband & me (or just me, I'll take that too) trip before Christmas. We'll see. Europe, ideally.

We've done a few no-baby nights. Twice for just one night when he was one/one and a half, and 5 nights last fall when he was almost two (NYC). We slept in foreva and it was luxurious. But better than sleeping in was shopping and eating at restaurants without a kid. Amazing!

Jamie @ charmingly ordinary said...

We took a mini weekend getaway when Levi was six months old. We were only about 40 minutes away and had a great time! And is the Jamaica spot the Rockhouse?! Been dying to get there...

P.S. We went to Vancouver Island and did some whale watching on our babymoon. :)

BD said...

Wow, what a hot topic - so many comments! My oldest child is almost 6 and my youngest is 2.75. We haven't taken any trips without them, but are planning to do so at the end of the year. I think they will both do great!

Chessa! said...

We left Lucia for the first time when she was about 11 months. It was brutal at first for all the obvious reasons. My parents sent me a photo about 30 minutes after we dropped her off and she looked SO happy and like she was having so much fun that I felt ridiculous for being so worried. Obviously we missed her (obviously) but it was so important. It's great for them to have time with other people and let's face it, it's great and extremely important for us as parents and for our relationship outside of being mama and daddy. Two days was perfect for the first time. Then in September we went away for five days. We had an amazing time but by the 4th day I was ready to see our girl - we both were. Still, it was so nice to be away...read a magazine, sleep until 9, stay out until when ever, etc.
Anyway, that first weekend away helped us to relax about leaving her. And last weekend we had a little staycation for my husband's 40th. Now we're planning another trip for my birthday in February...just a few days. And she'll have the best time ever with my parents. :)

Aja Lake [the gold hat.] said...

hey joanna! check out a cup of jo on the gold hat. xo

Taylor Renee said...

We don't have kids (yet) but Derek and I always wish we could afford to travel more while we still have the flexibility! We make do with staycations and nearby travel!

All three of these destinations sound like a dream! Though I just got lost looking at that blue, blue water on RockHouse's site.

Enjoy your weekend getaway! And happy birthday to Alex!

fleur_delicious said...

No travel for my parents in my childhood, because we were living at or below the poverty line until I was seven and my mother went back to work (I have a sibling with a developmental disorder and my mother waited until we were old enough to be alone in the afternoon to go back to work). So, weekend drives up to Portland once or twice a year - and then when we were better off and my brother and I were preteens, we began taking annual trips to Ashland to see Shakespeare. =) I was 28 before I first crossed an ocean, though when I was eight we did drive up to Vancouver, B.C. for a four-day stay - with a stop in Seattle to see the touring museum collection "Moscow: Treasures and Traditions," just released for the first time to western countries by Mikhael Gorbachev. My parents were pretty amazingly selfless - what little travel we were able to do, mostly in state, always contributed to our general education and cultural refinement, even from a very young age! (I loved that show; I still remember the glittering orthodox monstrances, Peter the Great's sled, and Katherine the Great's dresses.)

Anonymous said...

i just travelled solo to the US (from Australia) for 10 nights without my two boys (3yrs and 10 months). i had insane fears of something happening to me while away but once i got on the plane, i thoroughly enjoyed myself. Starting missing them about 1/2 way through but didn't overshadow the good times. i appreciate their company more than ever now that i'm back!

JennySue said...

I left my first two boys both at 4 months old for the hubby and I to go to Las Vegas both times. It was hard for sure, but since it was Vegas and you should only stay there 2 nights or you get into adult trouble;-), it was the perfect amount of time away to ease us into the uncharted territory of being child-less. Now that we have 3, we've only been able to get away once just bc none of the g-parents can handle all 3- shoot, we can hardly handle all 3 sometimes and we're only in our 30's! But do it, just pull the trigger and get away- even one night is enough to jump start your mommy and wife battery! Have so much fun whatever you choose!!

Joanna Goddard said...

i love these awesome comments about the rockhouse, it sounds like a dream! and i love all your insights/thoughts on traveling without babies. so fascianting. we're all the same! :)

Leslie said...

Wow, Joanna, this post could not have come at a more perfect time for me, as it's something I've been thinking a lot about the past few weeks. Our daughter is 10 months old and we have not spent any nights away from her. I'm at the point where I'd love a weekend away with my husband, but I'm still nursing and she won't take a bottle. I figure by the time she's weaned (hopefully by 12-15 months??) we can plan for something beyond the date nights we currently do, but it's hard.

Also, my parents are not really in a position to come stay with her, and my husband's family lives out of state, so getting help in place is a challenge.

But your post--and all the comments--is inspiring and will give me something to look forward to! In the meantime, have a wonderful weekend with Alex and enjoy every minute!

Anonymous said...

my husband and I were planning a long weekend away, but he just started working again, which is good, but darn it...we were finally ready to leave our 2 year old with my parents for a long weekend! My little guy has only recently spent the night at my parents' on his own. Even though my mom was totally up for it ages ago, I just felt guilty leaving him I guess. I don't know... I def should have done it sooner though because it's been a great success so we've been doing that more often which gives us a little break here and there. Have a great weekend away - it will be wonderful! -lbs

Mélanie A. said...

While eating diner with my hubby, we were talking about it . Mathis is one year old and Philippe asked me where would you like to go to vacations . I started to tell him: Greece , Croatia ... And he said to me but Mathis is not going to like it and I answered back but vacation with Mathis is not really vacations so We are thinking about going alone but I don' know if I would be abble to do it . I'm waiting to read about your week end , may be it will help me

Deborah said...

I just left my one year old last week for 5 days!!! every year my sisters and my mom do a girls trip-no kids allowed! so my husband had him in the evenings and my best friend who my son thinks is his grandma had him during the day. everything went PERFECT! the only bump in the road was he grew a new tooth while I was gone so my poor husband was up with a teething baby all night. it was hard to be gone and when i came back i felt like a stranger, like i was an observer of my child. once i put him down for bed and woke up with him bright and early the next morning-i was back to being mommy! being gone made me realize how important it is for couples to get away for some alone time. Good Luck!

Amanda said...

Ooo...that place in Jamaica for sure! That restaurant looks amazing and I want to sit on that bridge, looking at that beautiful water!

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