Well, we made it back to Salt Lake safe and sound yesterday. The flights seemed a little longer and harder than the first time around, but overall it wasn't too bad. The flight from Malaysia to Taiwan was about 4 1/2 hours and the kids did really well. You can see from the first and second picture they are very chipper and excited to be back on the plane. The third pic is of the kids in the Taipei airport. When I had to wake them up to get on the plane they were not very happy with me. Josh slept for about 3 1/2 hours and then woke up still very tired and cranky. I tried getting him back to sleep by walking around the plane, changing his diaper, feeding him, etc. but nothing worked. I finally just put him back in his car seat and let him cry for a few minutes until he fell asleep. I felt bad for the passengers around me, but there really wasn't much else I could do. When all three kids were still asleep I had to go to the bathroom. I figured I would only be gone a few minutes so I got up and went. When I got back (about 2 minutes later) Emma was awake and a complete stranger was holding Josh, telling me he was trying to climb out of his car seat and got stuck... nice. I get the Mom-of-the-Year award for that one! We were all very excited for that 14-hour leg of the trip to be over. We pulled into LAX around 8pm Tuesday and had to get our luggage and go through customs. I thought Josh's stroller would be at the gate but found out later it was checked with the luggage and was waiting for me at the baggage claim. So I walked from the gate through immigration to the baggage claim carrying Josh in his car seat, my carry-on bag, the baby carrier backpack, and Emma's backpack. I thought my arms would break off by the time we got to our luggage! Luckily, customs went very smoothly and we were in and out in just a few minutes. We took our bags to Delta to see if they would check my three because when we were in Malaysia they already requested it to be sent straight through to Salt Lake. Well, I was told it was too early so we had to take all of our luggage to the hotel with us. Thank goodness Whitney was there. I don't think I could have done all that without her! We got settled into our hotel around 10:30pm, Josh woke up at 12:30am, and the other kids woke up at 2:30am. We left at 3:30am to catch our shuttle and checked in at Delta's ticket counter. Whitney decided to go check her luggage at Alaskan Air and then meet up with us later. It turned out her terminal was clear on the other side of the airport so we never got to see each other off. I took all three kids by myself and checked the luggage, got through the security check, walked to our terminal, and then endured the last leg of the trip to Salt Lake. I felt pretty good about it, considering I didn't lose a kid and we all made it safely. :) The flight back was wonderful. The kids were happy, it was less than 2 hours (woo hoo!), and the plane was half full so we got an entire row to ourselves. Ben wanted a window seat so sat at the other end of our row and watched out the window most of the flight. We were sad to leave my parents, but it was definitely a great feeling seeing the Wasatch Mountains as we pulled in. Jake met us at baggage claim and the kids jumped in his arms, showering him with hugs and kisses. As we were getting the luggage Jake mentioned to me how he just found out he needed to go to Moab in a few hours for work and wouldn't be back until Saturday (then he leaves again on Sunday for a mining conference and won't be back until Friday.) I about cried. Then when we got home I opened my luggage and pulled out my favorite statue I bought to show Jake and found it broken into three pieces. Also, my cell phone died because I left it in a ziplock bag with Purell in it and the Purell leaked all over (yes, smart... I know.) Anyway, Jake left a few minutes later for work and I broke down and cried. I'm sure most of it was due to exhaustion, lack of sleep. Jake left for Moab around 2pm and the kids and I slept for a few hours. Then we headed to the AT&T store so I could buy a new phone and then we went to Jake's parents' house so we could see Jan and talk to her about the trip. She was so nice letting us stay there and talking to me for a couple hours. We stayed until 9:30pm and I know she goes to bed early but she didn't seem to mind. I put the kids down around 10:30pm and Josh woke up probably 4 times during the night and Emma woke up once. Josh woke up around 4:45am ready to play and so I stayed up with him and just barely put him back down. So, here it is... 6:55am and I'm ready to take another nap. I think it's actually a good thing Jake wasn't here to experience last night's craziness. He wouldn't have been fully functional at work today if he had been woken up that many times. Hopefully we will all get over our jet lag very soon!
Mom and Dad, thanks for the wonderful trip. We have memories that will last a life-time! We love you.
Thinking of You
5 days ago