Do: break as many airline/airport/FAA rules as possible, in succession.
For example: Demand to gate-check your tandem double stroller, then take that stroller (with toddler twins strapped in) up the escalator. Yea, that’s right. When no elevator is provided, Junglemom (and Jungletwins) get badass.
Once off the escalator, feel free to leave your stroller and baggage unattended, in order to chase your twins (as they squeal with delight) through not only your own gate, but every gate on the floor, yelling after them “I’m gonna get you, little fishy!”
When you run out of open gates, feel free to carry on though gates technically closed for renovations.
Don’t pay any attention to the security guard trailing you as you do this.
Do split up your journey if it involves a whopping 3 flights, but
Don’t be surprised if at your first stop (a smaller, more heavily populated island than your own) the airport hotel isn’t serving or selling any food because “it’s Sunday.”
Do send your husband out to scrounge some food in the surrounding area, but
Don’t be surprised if he gets lost in the seedy back streets and wonders around for over an hour before happening upon a convenience store specializing in porn, selling natty light to 12 year olds, and- praise the lord- hostess cupcakes.
Don’t panic when you arrive at the airport for leg 2 of your journey, and find your flight has been cancelled.
Do be advised, however, that the longer it takes the airline to find you alternate flights, the more items of clothing y0ur twins will remove and throw on to the dirty airport floor.
Do attempt several distraction techniques on your longer flights: DVDs, books, toys.
Don’t be surprised when none of these distractions work for more than a few minutes at a time.
Do expect that for this long flight, and the next one right after, a lot of crying at various intervals will occur, no matter what you do.
Do feel guilt for the discomfort of the other passengers, but not too much. They will get over it much faster than you will.
Do save your pleasantries/apologies/grovelling for the flight attendants, who will not only lend a sympathetic ear, but also hook you up with 2 bottles of wine, a large chocolate chip cookie, a bag of nuts, 4 cartons of milk, and the kind offer to wash out your sippy cups.
Don’t, when you arrive at your 3rd airport, have an enormous meltdown at Chili’s, because you left your glasses at the hotel on the first leg of the journey (the one that doesn’t serve food on Sundays).
Do, when you finally reach the check-in desk at the awesome, totally accommodating hotel in your destination city, inform the lovely hotel employee that she is under no circumstances to allow you in-laws (who will arrive tomorrow) to stay in an adjoining room- no matter how they plead.
Don’t, once you arrive in your room and unpack, feel like an idiot for having a meltdown in Chili’s, when in fact you have brought your glasses after all.
Do be grateful that you have crossed one island, then another island, then an ocean, then a continent, and arrived with your tots, husband, and psyche, all in one piece
Happy Holidays, and happy travels!