We've been doing a lot of hand-offs lately with one of us traveling for work only to high five the other in passing as we switch spots and the other makes their way out the door and on the road. Ash is well aware of what it means when mommy or daddy hugs just a little more tightly and says goodbye along with "see you tomorrow/the next day" rather than "see you after school". He knows it means we're going to be working past his bedtime, or through the next day or two, and that he'll be hearing his bedtime stories and nye-nye songs through the connection of a cell phone.
Yes, whenever work calls one of us away over night(s) we still proceed with the bedtime routine as usual just with one of us listening in via our cell. And yes, this sometimes means that daddy has to sing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star while walking the aisle to board his flight home and just deal with the fact that he'll have to explain to those seated near him that he was just saying goodnight to his son. Unless of course those seated near him are also traveling parents, in which case they totally get it - no explanation needed. It also means breakfast is likely taking place at one of the local coffee shops where the 3 of us can eat up every possible second together and prolong the good bye as long as possible. This act is now referred to in our household as getting a "fast coffee".
"Fast coffee" became a phrase one morning when I had to explain to Ash that although daddy was going to the coffee shop with us, he couldn't stay long because he had a plane to catch. So that morning daddy was just going to have a fast coffee. Well, Ash decided the next time that he too would like to have a fast coffee, and then it was my turn to be the one heading out on the road and clearly if I was having a fast coffee the boys should be too, so... the phrase caught on. And now whenever one of us is heading out for longer than just the day of work we all go out for a fast coffee together, and whichever parent leaves first gets the most adorable wave from the window while pulling off and heading on their way.
Fast Coffee and Airplane Twinkle Twinkle: A sure way to melt any working/traveling parent's heart.