Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Packing

We'll be heading for the U.S. tomorrow morning, for the first time in 2 years. There's a daughter to introduce - and to baptize - a niece to meet, sleepovers to be had, sushi to be eaten... so much to do in a few short weeks.

This time of year, all of the families pack up and head home, so our neighborhood is getting pretty empty, anyway. I don't want anyone to think this is a paid endorsement (if only!), but if you've never lived overseas, then you likely don't know that expats dream of Target. Seriously. Every mom I know has a short list of places to visit while stateside, and on top of every single list, there's Target. You can buy anything there! And it's clean! And organized! With actual prices, no bartering involved! I myself have a Target list of my own. No more $20 sunblock or $30 bags of razors for me.

But first.... we have to get there.

I asked the kids to pack their own carry-ons with the things they thought they'd need for the plane. Shay did a great job: two books, Nintendo, a journal, some pens and pencils, with room left over for snacks. Aidan? Not so much. I found clay cars and Halloween costumes in his bag, so we had to start over. Currently, he's carrying 5 small stuffed bears, some Pokemon cards and his Nintendo. He will NOT part with the Musketeers Halloween costume, either. Kyra has a tiny backpack into which she's stuffed her current favorite dolly, Frazzle.

Somehow I will be clearing customs in San Francisco with 4 carry-on bags, 2 suitcases, one stroller, one carseat and 4 small children. At least, I console myself, this journey is sure to provide some bloggable material. In the re-telling, I have high hopes it will all seem entertaining. As it's unfolding, maybe not so much. For example, YOU try spending an hour on the phone trying to convince United Airlines that they really ought to seat you next to your children rather than scattering you all around the cabin, only to be told that because you aren't a premier member you don't deserve to choose seats in advance. Needless to say, I'm not really happy with United Airlines right now, and the trip hasn't even begun.

So okay. Everything has changed since we've been away. People have moved. Babies have been born. Loved ones have separated, or fallen ill. Despite all of this, I feel certain we'll take up right where we left off.

It'll be good to get home for awhile. I'll see some of you on the other side. Wish me luck tomorrow on my marathon journey.

3 comments:

Jill said... [Reply]

Best, Best, Best of luck to you in your travels!! I don't envy you... though I can certainly empathize as I'm heading back to India on Thursday sans hubby and with 2 toddlers and a 8 week old munchkin.

Here's to good blog fodder next week - and sanity too!

Kelsey said... [Reply]

"expats dream of target"

WE DO. At least, I know I did while I was overseas. Even though I've been back for 5 weeks, stores like Target still evoke something of a sense of wonder.

Connie said... [Reply]

Target is a source of goodness and badness.

Bad - because, even with an APO address you can email order to, Target.com is pretty random about what it will ship, or not, and you do not find out until check-out. grr...

Good - on R&R. Mix and match school clothes; socks by the BAG, not the pair; kitchen goods; kid lunch and school items - better quality and price than overseas; etc. but yes... you have to be on R&R, in the store!

o well... May the travel fairies twinkle piles and piles of happy, and smooth-flying, pixie dust over all of you. :) And I'll have confidence that even if you cannot get seats confirmed in advance, the flight attendants and other passengers will seat your family together.

Please. Write your own stuff.