Working Mom : First Solo Work Trip

working mom, working mom travelsAs much as I love travelling, I’ve managed to dodge the work travel bullet until the past week. It had been extremely busy on our end and the week leading up to my 3 night trip to Vancouver was pure chaos if nothing else. As the day of departure (a Sunday) drew near I was filled with mixed emotions. Here was  my chance to shower, sleep and pretty much do anything I wanted, in peace. I had visions of sleeping on board my WestJet flight and maybe even reading a book! Then again, I hate doing anything alone and while I was meeting co-workers on the other end, I’d still be alone in my hotel room with no one to provide any background noise. Sure the hubs and I had gone away for a night or two before but this was my first solo trip in over four and half years and it all felt a bit strange.


Of course we all survived just fine! The departing goodbyes were quick and I kept my tears to myself as I dashed out slamming the door behind me. Ironically I didn’t have my laptop or kindle on board and the TV screens didn’t work! So I napped because that was all I could do! Also ironically, I got upgraded to a full suite and had way too much room to spread out at The Sutton Place Hotel. A full kitchen and ample room for little ones to run around at, definitely made me miss the hubs, Baby Boy and Little Monkey. I knew they’d have liked the space. Luckily for me, I barely had any idle time. I had back to back meetings and the evenings were spent bar and restaurant hopping as is the nature of my line of work. After my meetings I’d rush to the hotel room to send off a couple emails, shower and catch the kids on Skype before they went to bed and then I’d head out again only to return past midnight. I enjoyed many fine cocktails and delicious eats on this trip and managed to sneak in an hour with two friends, so the trip wasn’t all that bad really. It really was good to connect with the team out on that coast and so I definitely see the value in having traveled away from the family. Also don’t think I didn’t enjoy not having to run around and clean up after messy kids and the hubs! No bedtime routines, no lunches or early morning scrambles were all welcomed for those three days. I came and went as I pleased with no one to bug me. I was snug in my plush bathrobe as I ordered a $30 grilled cheese sandwich at 2 a.m. and plowed through a presentation that was due that a.m. BEST of all…there was no fear of having to deal with anyone waking up in the middle of the night!


My return flight saw me watch a couple sitcoms and I couldn’t help but smile when I heard crying kids away in the distance. Luckily they were too far away for me to offer any assistance (hah!).



As I landed at midnight I was exhausted not having slept well the past three nights. You see, I have never lived alone .. between family, roommates and the hubs, I’ve managed to never stay alone except for occasional work trips I’ve had to take over the years. That night I slept well but only got 6 hours of sleep before waking up to greet Little Monkey and get her on the bus. When both kids woke up they didn’t even bat an eye to acknowledge that I had been away…it was just like any other day! The next two days involved all day meetings that ran into the wee hours of the night (and early morning!) and so I was SO grateful when Friday rolled around and we packed our bags to head away together!



Here’s some tips that worked for us with two kids at home under the age of 4 

  • Get the kids ready : We count our days in “sleeps” and so I told Little Monkey I’d be going away three sleeps before I was to leave and reminded her of it at least twice a day. Baby Boy still can’t comprehend stuff so I didn’t really tell him much.
  • Get the partner ready : I had grand plans of freezing meals and having my parents drop by one day but none of that happened. They ordered pizza and the hubs cooked pasta. I showed him how to pack Little Monkey’s lunch the night before I went away and so he knew all her faves and not so faves.
  • Plan one on one time prior to going away : Little Monkey and I spent the night at the Aquarium and Baby Boy and I spent an entire afternoon up on the roof top in anticipation of me going away. This really helped Little Monkey understand that we can go away alone and then come back to our family. The hubs and I snuck out for a couple date nights this month as well!
  • Keep the goodbye short : Little Monkey is not  a fan of goodbyes and so I took a page from her book and dashed away before the tears could roll out or the tantrums ensue.
  • Stay in touch : I would text the hubs throughout the day and made a point to Skype with the kids every night before they went to bed. It helps to still hear about their day and remind them how many sleeps were left until I was back home.
  • Bring back gifts : The hubs received a couple bottles of beer as a  thank you for holding the fort down ( all day and night with two kids is not an easy task!!) and the kids got candy and tattoos thanks to some airport shopping!
  • Plan fun activities for the return : I decided that we’d take a road trip to Upstate NY on my return and that “holiday” was something fun everyone could count down to.


12143117_815603013007_7161493742951387552_nGoing away on a work trip can suck but it really doesn’t have to! I decided to seize the opportunity and make the most of it. I was dog tired and a taxi driver even told me that I looked like I needed a massage (eeks!!) but that didn’t stop me from making the time to connect with friends despite craving a few hours of sleep. While I don’t anticipate too many work trips, I know I will have to occasionally travel as part of my job. I’m fine with that, especially now that I know that everyone survived. Sure we miss each other but absence does make the heart grow fonder right? Next time I definitely need to ensure the week leading up to and after isn’t half as busy as this time around!


Do you have to travel for work away from family? Any tips to share?

  • Eldon
    October 15, 2015 at 4:40 pm

    No but I wish I get to travel for work for the experience!

    • Yashy
      October 17, 2015 at 11:00 pm

      My fingers are crossed for you! It is definitely an experience.

  • Elizabeth Friesen
    November 15, 2015 at 10:32 am

    Leaving my children behind when I travel is difficult, as I am a single parent. However, it feels so good to get away, even if it’s just for a weekend. That time to myself is invaluable and allows me to be an even better parent, as I return feeling refreshed and rejuvenated! 😀

    • Yashy
      November 16, 2015 at 9:36 pm

      So true!

  • Neal
    November 21, 2015 at 4:48 pm

    It is hard for them when parents are away but one thing I have learned is that kids are resilient. And it you take the time, to plan things out and consider their needs, like you did, things run fairly smoothly, most of the time.

    • Yashy
      November 22, 2015 at 9:43 am

      So true!

  • Nate
    December 3, 2015 at 11:03 pm

    Hard to be away from the kids

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