What’s She Doing Wednesday: Toddler Trip Success!

Blog Post WSDW 6.10.15

Enjoying the contents of her Busy Bag!

This past weekend we went to Richmond, Virginia (about 2 hours south) for a family funeral. I searched and searched for a hotel that was a “suites” chain so that at least we would have a separate bedroom from the living room. That way we could put her to bed in her pack and play in the bedroom, close the door, and hang out in the common area. We settled on a Homewood Suites, located about 20 minutes away from the funeral and it was worth every penny (not that it was pricey). It had the pack and play, free hot breakfast, and an outdoor pool. As mentioned in last Saturday’s post (Traveling with your Sprout), all these are so beneficial when traveling with a baby or toddler, so we were thankful to have found a place that had all of these features, not inconvenient to the funeral’s location. Did I mention my parents booked the suite next door? That made things even better! We were able to score a night out on Saturday, to meet up with my childhood best friend. Plus they got some extra Jia time that they wouldn’t have had, had we stayed in separate hotels. 

Despite a chilly and rainy couple of days leading up to the weekend, Jia still wanted to go in the pool our first morning – such a little water baby! It was in the upper 60’s at 9:30 AM that morning (yup, when you have a toddler you gotta do things early to stick to that nap time!), but she wanted to get in! So, Jeff got into his swim trunks and waded while Jia tested out her Stearns Kids Puddle Jumper Deluxe Life Jacket (US Coast Guard-certified Type V swimwear) for the first time. I’d been using an infant/toddler Speedo floaty raft in the past, but the public pools we’d been visiting only allow Coast Guard-Certified floatation devices, so we thought we would test it out over the weekend at the hotel’s pool. We’d been gifted this amazing life jacket back when Jia was 1 month old and I’d been looking forward to using it, anyway! It worked out BEAUTIFULLY, I feel like she is happier in it since she gets to float around a little more freely than if we were carrying her through the water, and if we go to the beach or lake, this is her safest option as a little kiddo.

Oh and unfortunately, Jeff forgot that he put his iPhone in the front pocket of his swim trunks… and after about 10 minutes of being in the water with her, it wasn’t until we got Jia out of the cold water, that we realized it. A really nice hotel staffer found some rice for us to set it in, but after 48 hours, it’s still not working (Thanks anyway, Fred!). Goodbye, 5S. 

So, new things that Jia’s been doing this past week: 

  • Says “outside” and “upside down” really well. Even when she hears people say (or songs singing) “outside” she says it back. 
  • When she sees cartoon animals in her books (especially dogs), she leans forward and kisses them on the page.
  • Makes kissing noises when she sees little boys (not little girls) and basically any dog within sight.
  • She now hits (swats) and bites. Not my favorite new development. This is when she’s having a tantrum about not getting her way and we pick her up to distract her with something new. 
  • Still tries to go after Kona and his curly tail, poor patient Kona. 
  • She got a chipped tooth :( Jia was wandering around the hotel room exploring on day 2 and we were getting her room ready for nap time when she looked into the tub and fell in (no water). She cried a lot, but she didn’t have a bloody lip or anything. She was smiley soon afterward and was in good spirits, nothing seemed wrong. It wasn’t until the next afternoon when we were changing her diaper in the car that we realized her little front snaggletooth. I’d felt a pinch when she was nursing that morning but didn’t think anything of it. We feel AWFUL –our poor little girl’s tooth! Now until it falls out, she’ll have a chipped front tooth. Kindergarten pictures, First Grade pictures… sigh. Luckily it didn’t chip to the gum and she’s eating perfectly fine. (I spoke with our pediatric dentist once we got home and sent him a close-up photo and all is good. We have our appointment in two weeks anyway. Good thing she’s got 13 teeth!
  • She’s now up to napping 1 hour in the car. Thank goodness. And that’s a lot for her. At home in her crib she will nap for 1.5 hours, but in the car, she’s notorious for only napping 30 minutes even on a 9 hour drive. But thankfully, during our 2 hour drive down to Richmond (and back) she napped an hour. A whole hour. Whew. 
  • Loves the intro music to the cartoon Bob’s Burgers. She smiles and bops her head back and forth to this song moreso than plenty of other songs that she bops around to. I think it’s the dog-bark that she likes. 
  • Our poor little baby also has some banged up knees. She was tripping all over the place in these cute white sandals that her grandma got for her, but I think either they’re not snug-fit enough and/or the soles are too thick/bulky. She got her first real band-aids with a spritz of that neosporin/analgesic spray that I put in our Busy Bag’s first-aid kit. 
  • She LOVES the carousel now! Her first ride was at the National Zoo in DC, where she clung to me for the first half, then was iffy for the remainder of the 1 ride. Then on Monday I took her to the National Harbor’s carousel (unlimited rides for $5, free for one adult with child). The first ride she was clingy to me for the first half and the other 9 rides she was having a great time! For the last two rides I even rode my own horse and was within arms’ reach of Jia. 
  • Sticker Time! She has finally warmed up to stickers! It started after we came back home from Richmond. I had stickers in her Busy Bag, but since she was occupied with everything else in her bag she didn’t notice. But this Monday I showed her the stickers and she was very interested in sticking them all over herself. Only thing is, her skin is sensitive to the adhesive, i noticed she had little pink marks on her arms cheek an leg where we put stickers on her. Just like mommy. 
  • Eating: steamed zucchini sticks, asparagus, grapefruit, lamb. 


  • I feel like we’re hitting our stride as mother/daughter, but I’m still very happy having just one child. A lot of people I know who have daughters Jia’s age are already expecting baby #2 this Fall, but I am so still enjoying Jia by herself. My mom waited 7 years between my brother and myself (intentionally) because she wanted give plenty of attention to Rob and fully enjoy his young childhood. She wanted him to feel like she was able to really focus on bonding with him, so that she could fully bond with me, too (because he would be old enough to have school and friends, etc.). 
  • I really have to start getting my butt in gear… this involves eating less and exercising more. Obviously, right? Well, I’m gonna have to sign up for the “sweat every day” mantra. There are far too many outfits I’m missing out on right now and since my feet have permanently outgrown most of my size 6 shoes, the least I can do is get better about the food that goes in my body so that I’m not wasting my old clothes, too. 
  • After this trip to Richmond, I think I really enjoy traveling with Jia and Jeff. He was so helpful during the entire weekend and had a lot of fun with Jia, and Jia enjoyed exploring the hotel room (despite the whole tub incident) and loved roaming around the hotel hallways. So now I’m already brainstorming our next mini-vacation. 

Pics from the weekend:


On-Site outdoor pool? Yes please!


Swimming with Daddy


And a free hot breakfast? Double yes!


She was so giddy rolling around in our bed in the morning


Some quiet time with Daddy


The trash cans and kitchen spatulas were loads of entertainment! This kept her busy for both days!


“Busy Bag” was a success! Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles never looked so colorful!





Jia’s reflection in the carousel mirror


  1. Great blog and pictures! We’ll definitely check out Jia’s tooth when she comes in for her annual dental check up.

    • Jeni

      June 12, 2015 at 11:39 PM

      Thanks, Dr. Lopez! I’m anxious to get her in to see you, she’s still got a happy smiley little crooked smile so I’m “technically” not worried, but you know how this goes! Thanks for reading!

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