Over the past 11 years of being with Todd (4 of them dating and 7 of them married) I have been out on the road with him quite a bit during the touring seasons. Since I’ve usually been working full time I don’t always get to stay out that long, but I’ve done it enough to where I feel like I have my routine and packing list pretty settled. All of that changed however once I had our daughter Lola this past May and all of the sudden the thought of going out on the road to visit just sounded like a nightmare scenario. What if we get sick? What if she doesn’t sleep well? What if she’s waking up everyone else on the bus all night long? Where do I nurse her when I want some privacy? And then realizing that since we wouldn’t be out the whole time we would have to fly home at some point (her first flight) the questions and list of items to bring just got longer and longer until it felt like I was preparing for a major event for sure. Now that we are home from the first leg of our visits out this tour season I do feel more prepared as we get ready to go out again in a few days, but it is certainly not the easiest thing I’ve done for sure!
The first night bus call was midnight so she was up waaaay later than usual that night but she didn’t seem to mind! She was so happy to mix and mingle with all the new people, she’s pretty social like that…Since it was getting pretty cool at night in Nashville before the trip I definitely packed for fall weather with comfy sweatshirts and button ups (like this plaid one) for the road. I guess the weather decided to go the other way and it was basically in the 80’s the whole time—whoops!! Lola spent her nights in a DockATot in my bunk so that I could keep an eye on her and nurse her back to sleep as needed. The first two nights she basically did her normal sleep routine and I thought we were going to get some good sleep on tour buuuut then she regressed more and more until a few nights later she was just waking up constantly and continued that way through the whole trip. Thankfully most days Todd was able to take her in the morning for a while while I went back to sleep to catch up so that helped a lot. We got to be on tour for the Pittsburgh show (my hometown!) and see our family and friends for the day which was so special. I also got to have brunch at Pamela’s which has the best pancakes in town so that was a big plus too! I dressed Lola in a sweet gingham romper that morning and accidentally matched her to the brunch plates which was pretty funny… I got a recommendation from another band wife that the Doona stroller was the way to go for traveling parents and man were they right! It’s an infant car seat that turns into a stroller with one button, can be used without a base for car trips on the road (perfect for Ubering around), and is approved for airline use as well. AWESOME. It is pretty pricy but a huge help and one that we’ll keep for other kids to come too. I’ll probably do a full review of it for fun soon, but let me say that it’s been great so far. Green room tummy time! I took a portable play gym which was really helpful when venues were clean enough to take the baby into (not always a guarantee!).
We bought her first sunnies at a baby store in Columbus…so cute and she keeps them on for quite a while too!Got to steal a few minutes here and there with Todd while Lola napped during the day. Have to be within range of the baby monitors though but thankfully one spot was right in front of a crepe stand so we just got a crepe together while she slept. We take whatever moments we can get! (Sunnies from Amazon BTW, one of my fave pairs). We also all got sick within a week of being out and it was terrible. It was one of those throat/sinus viral infections that lasts a few days and it was so miserable to be that sick but also sleeping with and constantly nursing an (also sick) baby in a tiny bus bunk. I’ll be SO glad if I never have to do that again! I think mine lasted longer than others because of the terrible sleep I was getting at night. Sleep is usually most important to healing with those kinds of things…
Anyways, it was a hard trip for me in a lot of ways but also important to make sure that Lola and Todd get as much time together as they can during these seasons. I know he loved those few hours in the morning while I caught up on sleep taking her out to parks and farmer’s markets and just getting some good one-on-one time together. He already misses us so much. We’ll be out again next week for another round so here’s hoping we are all happy and healthy and maaaaaybe Lola will sleep a little better this time too—one can dream!