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Parents Panel: What was your first ever holiday with the kids?

Breastfeeding on transatlantic flights and navigating Majorca as a single parent of two.

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AS PART OF TheJournal.ie’s weekly Family Magazine, we wanted to create a space for parents to share their views. A place where mums and dads could share their experiences, lessons learned, and even mistakes along the way. 

This week, we asked our panel to tell us how they fared on their first ever holiday after having kids, and whether it went off without a hitch or was a bit of a ‘mare.

What was your first holiday with the kids?

Here’s what they had to say…

Parents Panel All 7

Top L-R: Olly Keegan, Alan Dooley, Denise, Ken Hyland. Middle L-R: Ríona Flood, Ross Boxshall, Marta Lisiecka, Denise Cumiskey. Bottom L-R: Kait Quinn, Susannah O’Brien, Derek McInerney, Suzie Kelly

We flew transatlantic with a newborn
Charlie and I joined Darragh on a work trip to Santa Cruz, California when Charlie was just eight weeks old. I was assigned a middle seat so had to breastfeed while rubbing elbows with the young man next to me. Even though there was still a lot of newborn-related work involved ever day, things did feel easier and a bit more special just by being away.

- Kait Quinn

He only screamed the place down once 
When our soon was three months old, we went to Cork for a week. I was still breastfeeding, so once I could feed our son, he was happy. He slept his way round Fota and Cobh – apart from the one time we went out for something to eat and he decided to scream the place down. It was an introduction to how things would be going for the next several years!

- Olly Keegan

Asleep in Cobh Asleep in Cobh Co Cork. Source: Olly Keegan

Ten days – and a lot less alcohol
Our first holiday with Clíodhna was ten days in the Algarve when she was five months old. It was very different to previous sun holidays – we ate in most nights, went to bed earlier (and got up a lot earlier), had a lot less alcohol, and in general we just did a lot less.

- Ríona Flood

I took them to Majorca by myself
My first holiday with my kids was to Majorca when Brian was seven and Shauna was two. Being a single parent I was very nervous about how I was going to manage travelling with them on my own: handling luggage , buggies, temper tantrums and getting us all from A to B in one piece. We made a system where Brian would push his sister in the buggy and I would take the luggage – it worked very well!

- Denise Cumiskey

18671234_1485625684835767_1855753580563551306_n One from the archives - Brian and Shauna ready for their first holiday. Source: Denise Cumiskey

We took advantage of the hotel babysitters
We went to Waterford when my eldest was about nine months old, and I was four months pregnant with her sister. The hotel had babysitters, so we took advantage of that – it was also the first time we left the baby with a stranger, though just for an hour to have a quiet meal together!

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- Susannah O’Brien 

We’re finally planning our first trip with all four kids
With four kids we have really only managed weekend breaks away. Now that our youngest child is two years old we are bravely booking our first real holiday for a week away to the sun. My wife does however work as airline cabin crew and has taken our eldest daughter ‘to work’ with her a few times to places like New York, Orlando Disney and Niagara Falls.

- Ross Boxshall

image1 (2) What a weekend getaway looks like for the Boxshalls. Source: Ross Boxshall

We held off as long as we could 
We bit the bullet when our eldest was four, and our youngest was still under one, with a chalet in the south of France, touring around Cannes and Monte Carlo. It all went relatively smoothly and since then we’ve been away almost every year – this year’s trip to Ibiza will be our fifth time there with the kids.

- Alan Dooley

More Parents Panel: What’s one rule your kids know they can never break?

More Parents Panel: How did your little one navigate learning to talk?

Do you have a parenting issue you need advice on? Do you find yourself asking if you’re being unreasonable? In our new Am I Being A Bad Parent? feature, we’re asking other parents to weigh in on reader dilemmas. Drop us a line with your dilemma on family@thejournal.ie

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