My kids, my husband and I have had a lot of adventures and they have been successful and fun, save for one very difficult flight back from Jamaica a couple of years ago when my youngest who has sensory processing disorder, had a major meltdown at 30,000 feet in the air. But we dealt with it and moved on. (And so did some of the passengers sitting nearby.) My daughter was very tired and frankly a flight attendant might have avoided the whole panicky episode if he hadn’t been so insistent that my darling girl cram her blanket and favourite teddy bear into the seatbelt with her. Ainsley is super touch sensitive and that sent her over the edge. Usually I find giving both my kids a lot of notice – in life in general is the best way to go. Transitions can be issues with lots of kids and so we use extra tools and supports like social stories around transition times. Next August before school restarts we will visit the school a few times to remember visually where we are supposed to be and what the school looks like physically. We have social stories too. These are an autism resource, but they work for many children. They show pictures and simple words in a tiny booklet that tells my daughter what to expect. We have picture schedules around our house for my little one to figure out what she needs to do at any given transition time. And we generally prepare her and plan and show her things in advance of doing them. Those small details help. For a lot of families last minute travel can be fun, and it is for ours too, but it also presents extra challenges. So now the exciting part – we get to travel to Florida next week and have fun together as a family and we will be seeing Mickey Mouse at Disney World and hopefully daytripping over to Cape Canaveral to see how the astronauts do things. Anyways that means I have two and a half days to prepare everyone and pack for three people (well husband can do most of his packing and niner will try but she’ll forget underwear or bathing suits or something if I let her fly solo on that mission.) What I love about last minute travel is the excellent deals that you can sometimes negotiate. There are numerous sites you can use to get deals, but http://www.searstravel.ca/ is one of my favourite sites available for comparison shopping when it comes to last minute deals. But there are many others too like Kayak and Expedia and even the airlines themselves can surprise you with their amazing deals. I still love Sears travel because I can book the trip on my card even if I find the deal on line and they give me in person support and I get the reward points. Then I pay it off instantly so I don’t get the interest charges. The points give me $50 or $60 worth of merchandise from Sears. That’s a bathing suit or two. So back to the topic at hand: last minute travel gives me a cutoff date to work towards and I have to organize us fast and I don’t mind. I will likely still run through my lists and preparations the same as usual, just in a shorter timeframe. The joy is finding out what you booked when you got there and if you landed a five star resort that exceeds expectations well it’s like the greatest shopping deal you ever imagined.