Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Summer Fun in Spica

Before my husband and I had Addison we used to delight in the fact that we could just pick up and go where ever we wanted. Yes, we had a dog and a cat that required some tending to but thankfully we had many friends or family willing to take them on if we chose to get away. We knew adding a baby to our life would change that somewhat but we promised ourselves that we would not let that change our social lives too much if we could help it. Well, like many things, that changed a bit when we got Addies HD diagnosis.

A simple trip to a friend or relatives house, even if it is just for a day, seems like a major undertaking as Addie requires a great deal of luggage to travel with her now (what a diva!). We have a bag for her changing supplies, a bag for her bedding, her Handy Sitt chair, her cast cooler AND the usual stuff that comes with an infant - formula, bottles, clothing, etc. It takes a full hour just to get her stuff packed up.

Unlike any other baby out there, diaper changes are a bit more involved, especially if the cast area gets wet while you are away from home! We need to pack not 1 kind of diaper but 2 plus abdominal pads. We also need to throw into the diaper bag the waterproof tape, the moleskin, the blowdryer AND the wedge to prop her up for her changes.

With her portable Handy Sitt chair and all her toys at grandma and grandpa's house

Then there is the stuff required for her naps! She needs her crib wedge and all the padding of her usual blankets and the one we use to prop up her little feet to help make her comfortable with her sleeping where ever she goes.

Her chair is very portable so that is an easy one to throw in. All this packing and unpacking is crazy...and definitely not what we had envisioned day trips being.

However, once we arrive at our destination and get her all set up, it is so worth it because the day just goes so much smoother. She can sit and visit with everyone, we can put her down for a nap (most of the time!) when she needs one and she sleeps comfortably. Because there is so much to pack for these trips it also means that we end up leaving little bits and pieces behind everywhere we go as I can't keep track of it all once we unpack it!

The cast makes a useful handle! At a recent family gathering, enjoying all the attention.

Summer means a lot of outdoors type events in Canada because that is our nicest time of the year, so most of us tend to want to be outdoors during the hot summer months from June-August. The biggest challenge we really have then is one that we cannot pack for - keeping her cool. Even moderately warm days can overheat our little one so we have to constantly watch her for signs of heat exhaustion and try to make sure when she naps there is a cool enough spot somewhere for her to rest. I am terrified that I am going to mistakenly overheat my poor little babe. I am sure I am a bit too overzealous when it comes to this, but I just keeping thinking how miserable I would be in a body cast...let alone if I was HOT and in a body cast!

Even though I moan about the packing and unpacking...it is worthwhile because Addison loves our little day trips. She is such a social butterfly...especially if those trips involve visiting her cousins or her grandparents. So I will just learn to love the packing...and maybe I will get better at remembering to bring it all back with us too!

Taking it all in at a family picnic...again, that Handy Sitt chair goes EVERYWHERE, indoors or out!


  1. Terry and Kim,

    Addison is beautiful, what a little trooper! Wow, what an adjustment, but looks like you guys are doing a great job. Can't wait to meet her in person.

    Julie and Roger

  2. It is worth the effort, isn't it :) I'm on my own at the moment while my husband is serving overseas and our other little boy has Cerebral Palsy so I completely understand the time, planning and effort it takes just to get out of the house. But like you said, it is so worth it. I've started getting everything we need for the next day ready the night before and packing as much in the car as I can. I makes things a lot easier and a lot less stressful for all of us.

    Gorgeous pictures of your little lady :)

  3. Wow Kate! You are amazing handling all that on your own. I hope your husband is returning soon. Good tip on packing the night before, I am sure that makes it a lot less frantic in the morning.

    Roger & Julie - we can't wait to see you guys, it has been too long. Maybe Terry and I can bring Addie for her first trip North before the snow flies! Hope you guys are doing well!!