Saturday, October 24, 2009

Cuddlebug and Bearhug on the go

Some pictures from our trip:

Cuddlebug enjoyed the view from the window of the train at the airport, while Bearhug was focused on his pizza :). We encountered lots of big escalators at the airports (we visited three that day). Cuddlebug insisted on riding the escalators, while Bearhug was terrified of them, so we compromised by letting Cuddlebug ride up and back down, and then we all took the elevator together.

We went to a pizza / game place where the boys had fun riding bumper cars (great for sensory-seekers!) and playing air hockey.

They got tired of hitting the puck back and forth and decided it was more fun to "throw" their handles at each other, lol.

My dad took us on a brief tour of the hangar where he works. The boys got a sneak-peek at the plane insides without all the seats and "trimmings."

And a visit to the park for some low-key fun. We were trying not to overdo it.

There were lots of groundhogs prairie dogs at the park :).

Cuddlebug buried a pack of "Smarties" candy in his volcano.

Then he was off to join Bearhug at the prairie dog field.

They walked around the entire perimeter of the field on the wall. When they got to going too fast, I told them to stop running. Cuddlebug responded, "we're not running, Mama, we're power-walking!" lol

On our way back to the car, Bearhug couldn't resist splashing in a puddle.

A little worried about overstimulation, we took the boys to pick out some Pokemon videos for some downtime.

The videos helped but it was not enough to prevent a rage of a meltdown, the likes of which I haven't seen from Bearhug in years. He stayed in control so well until one little thing set him off and it was downhill from there. No sense going into details... but it was worrisome because he's so big now I was afraid that he'd hurt himself or someone else or do some serious property damage but thankfully we all made it through ok.

After that, we pretty much stayed at the house the rest of the trip. The boys had fun playing with airplanes, and Bearhug enjoyed having Python attack the various planes, like this. He liked it when I took pictures of them like that, so I have a bunch of these with different planes. Aren't you glad I didn't post them all? hehe

And then it was time to go home.

We nearly had a repeat of Bearhug's meltdown when we found that Pizza Hut at the airport was closed during our layover (and I had told him we'd get pizza). So I assured him we'd get one when we landed at home before heading out to the car and he was able to stay in control (thank goodness because we were starting to attract stares and I was worried they wouldn't let us board the plane if he didn't calm down).

In the air we saw huge billowy clouds and blue skies, but on the ground it was back to rainy, grey skies.

As it turned out, the terminal we landed at does not have a Pizza Hut, and no other pizza would do (sigh) so we had to go on a quest for Pizza Hut before we could go find the car and go home. Of course it was the opposite direction of where we needed to go. We finally found it. That in itself was no easy feat - the airport was VERY crowded at that point, and to top it off Cuddlebug was insisting on pushing the suitcase (on rollers) for me and no matter how many times I told him you're supposed to pull it because it's easier, he was obstinate about it (and have you ever tried to push one of those things? It goes everywhere! not good in a crowded airport!). I was pulling my hair out, but we weren't really in a rush at that point and I knew they were both at their limit in terms of overstimulation, so I just took a deep breath and tried to keep the peace.

Anyway... so this one was taken on the underground train in our pizza quest.

And we had a breakthrough - Bearhug finally worked up the nerve to get on the escalator. I was really proud of him, I know how difficult it can be to overcome our fears. And he didn't just get on any escalator, he got on THIS one, which is huge and really messes with your visual sense of perspective for some reason.

All in all, it was a good trip and a relatively successful "experiment." We've been "paying" for it for the last couple of weeks because much like any vacation, the combination of overstimulation and change in the routine takes a while to work its way out of their systems. But it was great being able to go visit my parents for a long weekend and it was nice to have some one-on-one (or two) time with Cuddlebug and Bearhug, although I missed dh and Bitty while we were gone. It was also all the evidence I needed that we need to wait a long while before trying to take Bitty on a flight ;).

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Sande on October 24, 2009 at 3:57 PM said...

Talking about making memories. The boys will be telling their grandchildren about this time that ....... !

And that's the first picture of a real groundhog ... unless that big wombat looking thing on 'Groundhog Day' was also a groundhog?

Anonymous said...

Phew. I'm exhausted! You are one brave mama! Glad it was a successful experiment!

Anonymous said...

VERY impressive, lonestar!

Uhm, I was thinking prairie dog, but even then that one is too cute. Maybe a baby one - white spots like a fawn?

I'm glad that you share that your boys have a meltdown now and then. Though, from following them here, I can hardly imagine it. I DO believe you. Barbara

lonestar on October 24, 2009 at 11:52 PM said...

@Barbara - oops, I think I had my animal names mixed up, you're right it's a prairie dog ;). (groundhog, prairie dog - they rhyme, what can I say?)

lol, they all look so sweet and innocent, huh? And MOST of the time they are, so it's hard for most people to believe they could have meltdowns like that until they actually see it happen. Thankfully it is less frequent with time but the intensity seems to get worse. I'm not sure though if that's actually the case or it just seems that way because they get bigger and stronger.

CC on October 25, 2009 at 6:50 PM said...

lots of fun!!

Patty O. on October 25, 2009 at 9:12 PM said...

Wow, what a trip. I am in awe of you! We will be traveling for Christmas this year with all three kids and I am really nervous about it. We haven't been on a plane since Danny was 4--actually, he likes flying, but the traveling and all the schedule upheaval, etc is what worries me. Luckily, we learned some big lessons the last time we traveled that far, so this trip should go much better. Fingers crossed.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing about your trip! Wow, all things considered your boys did very well! And I think you're brave for taking them alone!! I'm glad it went well!

Online Printing on October 28, 2009 at 9:10 PM said...

Looks like an awesome trip! It's fun to see the boys having fun on those photos. They look cute in matching clothes.


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I'm a mom of three boys on the autism spectrum, 11-yr-old identical twins and a 7-yr-old. My husband is a SAHD.


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