When You’re Thankful for Family and YouTube

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Thanksgiving 2016 marked not only Livy’s very first Thanksgiving but also her very first Iowa road trip to visit family on the farm. Contrary to her tiny body and the size of her tiny clothes, Olivia does NOT travel light, and Darrin and I found ourselves packing practically everything in her nursery because who knows what types of blow outs we could be dealing with over the holiday weekend? Be they fussy blow outs or those that leak through the diaper. So we stuffed our car with rock-a-beds and bouncers, about a year’s worth of onesies, and any toy we could think of that might serve as a suitable distraction throughout the weekend.

Six hours in the car with a baby who’s decided to voice her displeasure for her car seat nearly the entire way there can make a person start questioning their life in between each angry scream. Knowing Olivia’s affinity for the sound of running water, Darrin pulled up a YouTube video of rushing sink water out of desperation, and, like the faucets she finds so fascinating, Olivia’s angry cries were immediately soothed by that water sound playing above her head. We drove through southern Minnesota and Iowa praying that we wouldn’t enter the valley of the shadow of dead cell service so that we could keep both our sanity and that stupid YouTube video running. Sure, I felt like I had to go to the bathroom for the entire trip down, but I’d let my bladder burst in the car before I’d turn off that beautiful sound of wasting water down the drain.

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Of course, the time we were able to spend with family on the farm made the uncomfortable car ride worth it. Our thanksgiving was riddled with lots of sweet and snugly baby moments that somehow, like they always do, made the frustration from the exhausting baby moments fade away. If Olivia was particularly fussy, I’d wrap her in my miracle-working Solly Baby Wrap, and she’d eventually fall asleep against my chest as I swayed and bounced around the house. There was good food. Even better conversation. And an overwhelming thankfulness that is much bigger than one single day of acknowledgment. In summary: our thanksgiving was wonderful. Thanks for asking.

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We drove what seemed like a completely different baby home after the weekend. One who enjoyed her car seat and didn’t mind being strapped down for six hours. Darrin and I were able to have a “romantic” audio book date and listen to Harry Potter while Livy slept soundly, waking up only when she was hungry or realized that someone had turned off the imaginary faucet.

Thanksgiving 2016 + baby girl’s first road trip was ultimately a success. Hope your holiday was just as memorable.

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