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Monday, April 25, 2022

Our Trip to Ireland Part 1: The Flight and Dublin

 Hello hello friends!! We are back from our trip to Ireland and I am very happy to report back that our trip was WONDERFUL. Honestly, this trip could've gone either way. That's a LOT of travel time with two young kids, to a different time zone, to a place with different food/activities/accent. Thankfully our two little ones had a blast and loved soaking up all the differences we came across. Today I am going to start recapping our trip for you, starting with the flight over. The flight honestly could've been it's own post because let's be real, it was quite an ordeal and a LOT of planning was involved to make it happen! Luckily everything went smoothly enough, and I'll fill you in on the little hiccups we encountered. 

So just a reminder, Devin was already in Ireland for work (he is the international sales manager for a company that sells science lab equipment-- I get that question all the time 😊). So the kids and I were headed over there by ourselves. Our flight left at 1, but I knew everything takes longer with two young kids so my intention was to get to the airport no later than 10:30. 

My parents had given the kids their Easter baskets the night before, and inside were these little water squirters (kinda like a water gun) from the Dollar Tree. I told the kids "Oh no, your swing set is on fire! You have to go be little fire fighters and put out the fire!!" They were out there for a solid 45 minutes "putting out fires" all over our backyard while I got to pack up in peace. πŸ˜‚ Thank you Nana and Pop Pop and thank you Dollar Tree. 

My mom drove us to the airport and dropped my dad off with me and the kids. He helped me get all our bags checked, made sure our tickets were printed, and stayed with Lily Grace while I got Liam in a fresh diaper. Then, we were on our own! The Charlotte airport employees kept switching up telling us where to go, so we had to go to 3 different security lines. By the time we finally got through, it was almost time to board (thank God we got there as early as we did!).

The kids had a quick snack before we boarded our first flight to Philadelphia. The flight was easy breezy. They just played on their tablets and were happy as can be.

 We had about 2 hours in Philly between flights so we ate some food...

then did a LOT of walking and riding moving sidewalks. I was trying to wear them out before we boarded for Dublin. After walking probably close to 2 miles, we found a spot to watch the airplanes for a bit. 

Lily Grace started getting tired sooner than Liam did. She was happy to have a seat in the carseat and was starting to doze off a little bit. 

We were finally ready to board our flight! Now if you remember, I ordered this carseat stroller contraption on Amazon:

It was a LIFESAVER! I had probably a dozen people come up to me in the airport and ask me about it/where to find it. If you are bringing a car seat on a plane/through the airport, this thing makes life SO much easier... with one exception. We had zero problems with it until we boarded the flight to Dublin. The aisle on the plane was wide enough for us to wheel it through business class, but the aisle for coach was narrower. The stroller/carseat wouldn't fit down the aisle. I was already carrying my backpack and the kids' backpacks, but apparently needed to hoist this thing up over my head and carry it down the aisle too. Thank the Lord several people jumped up to help me, and a sweet man carried it to our seats for us while I wrangled the kids and bags. On the flight home this wasn't a problem because Devin carried it. But on the way there it would've been tricker if I didn't have help. Anyway, all was well and thank God for the kindness of strangers! It was a nice reminder to be that person to help others whenever I can. 

We settled in and they played on their tablets..

The flight attendants were bringing around food, so about 15 minute or so before we got the food I gave the kids Zarbee's kids melatonin (the pediatrician recommended a half pill for Liam because of his size, but a full for LG). They ate their food, watched a little tv, and then both passed out. 

So much for bringing Liam's car seat. He wanted to snuggle his mama, and I was most definitely not going to say no to that.

Then I became a pillow for both kids...

And you know I loved every single second of it. 

At around 10 pm Liam woke up from being dead asleep and didn't remember where he was. He got scared and cried for a few minutes, but luckily not loud enough to wake anyone up who was nearby. You see how close LG is there? It didn't even wake her up, so luckily it wasn't too bad! Once I reminded him where he was, that LG and I were with him, and that he was safe, he immediately fell back asleep. 

God was clearly with us on this flight. I am well aware of how blessed we were and that this flight could've gone very differently. I had planned and planned and planned some more, but at the end of the day kids are kids. You can only do so much. I'm pretty sure I spent the last half hour of the flight just saying "Thank you God, thank you God" on repeat. 😊


And then we landed in Dublin at 5:00 am Dublin time-- woohoo! We made it through customs, made it through baggage claim only to realize Devin wasn't allowed through the gate to meet us in baggage claim. So now I had 2 kids, 2 car seats, 3 backpacks, and 3 suitcases to get from luggage claim through to the other side of arrivals. I found one of those little carts that you can stack your bags on, somehow squeezed everything on to 1, then wheeled a sleeping Liam behind me in his stroller contraption. LG walked beside me. We made it through and saw Devin-- it is safe to say I have never been happier to see him haha!!

We made it back to our hotel and Liam and I took a quick hour and a half nap, while Devin and LG went to grab breakfast. They came back, woke us up, and we all headed out to visit Trinity College.

I have no idea how Lily Grace was running on 4 hours of sleep and was still happy as can be. The girl was a total rock star. We grabbed a picnic lunch from the cutest little shop, Avoca. These next few pics are from Google because I forgot to snap some:

It was the cutest little shop..

that had food you could take with you for a picnic. Which is exactly what we did!

We then went over to St. Stephen's Green, which is a beautiful park. 

The kids watched the ducks, played at the playground, and ran around. I was blown away by the beautiful flowers, they were everywhere we looked. 

We grabbed dinner at a nearby pub (wasn't anything special, so I won't share), came back to the hotel, showered the kids and went to bed by 6 pm. 

The following morning we woke up, and Devin had booked us a tour at the Guinness Brewery. It was kind of dark in there and all of my pictures came out blurry-- sorry!

Devin had previously done the Guinness tour the week before we arrived and thought the kids would enjoy it. There was a waterfall when they were discussing the water used in the brewing process...

a bubble exhibit when discussing the carbonation...

and the kids favorites were the marketing with all the animals...

and how they transport Guinness around the world. 


Despite Liam's face in the picture, he LOVED the train, boats, airplanes, etc.

We had lunch, let Liam nap in the hotel while the rest of us freshened up, and then headed to our Irish Dancing Show. Lily Grace was PUMPED about learning how to Irish dance!


 They played traditional Irish music while the dancers danced a bit...
then they taught the audience how to dance too. I only have videos of us doing it and tried to screenshot, sorry they are blurry!



Both kids had a blast doing the dances, but Lily Grace was having the time of her life. She still practices her new moves even now that we are home. 😊

I'll link the company we used for the Irish dancing show because we LOVED it. It was a mix of families, bachelorette parties, older couples... and everyone seemed to enjoy it. Come back on Friday for more of our trip!! Next up: the town of Killarney and Killarney National Park. 

Today I am linking up with Sarah and Holly for Hello Monday. Have a great day!

15 comments :

  1. Oh my gosh it already looks like an amazing trip! The dancing looks so fun and love all of the flowers and greenery!

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    1. It really was wonderful!! I am having vacation withdrawals now!

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  2. I'm so excited to read about your trip. I'm really glad the flights over went well! As I was reading, I was picturing the places you mentioned!!

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    1. I'm so happy you get to read along and reminisce about your trip!

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  3. Oh this already sounds like it is shaping up to be an excellent trip!! We had a few encounters traveling with little where we had to rely on the kindness of strangers as well and I have always tried to pay that forward now that we're firmly beyond that stage.

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    1. I am sure every person you help is very appreciative-- I know I was!

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  4. I remember Avoca! I still have a little green pitcher from there. I had forgotten the name of the store. I love doing a picnic lunch when on holiday.
    You know I love travel posts (especially if I've been there before) so I'm looking forward to your recaps.
    Glad your flights went well.

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    1. It was the cutest store! We went a few times on our trip haha

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  5. Can I just say how proud I am of you as a random stranger?? LOL!!! My mom and I took Emilia on a flight a few weeks ago and even with 2 adults, a 4 year old and 2 carry on bags felt like a real task and I felt like we were holding everyone up getting into our seats and such. I'm SO glad you met nice strangers to help you! What a relief for you! I can imagine the anxiety realizing it wasn't going to fit through the aisle and having all that luggage/seats to deal with carrying! Can't wait to see more!

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    1. Oh I get it!!! Luckily everyone was patient with us and went out of their way to help. And yes girl--- I was pretty calm and collected the whole day until the dang stroller didn't fit through the aisle. I'm sure the "oh no" look was written all over my face. Maybe that's why so many people offered to help-- I was clearly upset/confused about what to do!

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  6. I can’t wait to read more about your trip. You are a rockstar and I’m so glad so many helped you out. Looks like your kiddos were amazing too.

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  7. I'm not sure why--but it only posts me as anonymous from my phone. Ugh! Anyway, I loved this first post and can't wait to read more. I'm glad all went well getting there.

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    1. Hahaha I've always wondered why I get some anonymous comments!! I get so curious about who it could be and why they're so secretive. Now I have my answer!

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  8. Sounds like you had so much fun. I would have been so stressed. I saw the videos of dancing on Insta it looked like so much fun.

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