Tips For Traveling With A Newborn

If you follow me on Snapchat or Instagram, you that we’ve been traveling with Zion from the time he was 6 weeks old.  He is just under 4 months and we’ve been on 4 planes, 2 road trips, lots of rental cars, trunk changes, nursing in public and #babytravellife.  And while it certainly has it’s challenges, it has been a blast and I highly reccomend it. Cast fear to the wind and go for it. Honestly, challenges are fun for me so to me, traveling with our baby is even more fun then traveling just the two of us. We haven’t let it limit us in any way and it has cultivated more confidence, less fear, more patience, less worry and has taught us so much.  People say “Travel before you have kids”, I say travel whenever you want and bring your babies along.

Here are some things I’ve learned along the way

  1. Get yourself a travel bassinet.

No need to carry along a pack n play or anything super bulky.  I use a travel diaper bag that converts into a bassinet and place him right in between us in bed or on the floor. The bottom opens up as he grows so he has plenty of room. If the flight is empty I can open it up and lay it on the plane seats so he can stretch out and kick or sleep. If we are at the park, I can open it up and again, he can play or sleep in something clean, safe and comfy. It is the. best. This is what I use and recommend.

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2. It is okay if you need to nurse in public.

I know some ladies have a hard time with this, but girlfriend, just do it. Cover or no cover, once you allow yourself the freedom to be able to nourish your baby without thought of what anyone thinks, things become ALOT less stressful.  IF comments come, ignore them. Honestly, I have never once gotten a comment and I nursed walking onto a plane…eyes right at chest level and everything. I thought to myself well it’s either this of a screaming baby, so your welcome people.  It ain’t no thing. You are not immodest, you are feeding your baby. Go for it girl!

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3. Keep things light.

Learn to go with the flow. Traveling always brings the unexpected.  Late flights, full flights, long lines, cancelled flights, early mornings, late nights, hotel glitches etc. Keep positive in mind and spirit and know that God has your best interest in mind. The universe is wired for your good so know that is something goes unexpected, something better is on its way and stay happy. An upset Mom causes a stressed out Dad and a moody baby. Babies can feel your energy and emotion. So for the sake of the whole family. Keep Calm and Carry On. You’ll thank yourself for biting your tongue and holding back the full flip out.  Take a breathe, grab a coffee and focus on the cuteness of your baby. Everything will melt away and you’ll get where you need to be shortly and enjoy the journey.

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4. Invest is a good baby wearing carrier

Eventually your baby will want to be out of the car seat and held.  Making this way easier while traveling (and in everyday life in general) is get yourself a carrier. The Ergo Baby is great and can be used by Mom and Dad. Additionally, there are slings, wraps, and beyond that will come in handy on the go. You can stash it in your carry on or wear right onto the plane (that is what I do). I always wear him through security and then if there is extra room on the plane, I place him in the car seat and stroll him to sleep before boarding. Our airport schedule goes a little like this:

  1. Nurse before we get out of the car or rental car.
  2. Wrap him and walk the stroller in
  3. Check in, get his lap pass
  4. Go through security with him wrapped (If you travel a lot take time to go get pre check for easier security).
  5. Get to the gate and transfer him into car seat or keep him wrapped depending on circumstances.
  6. Gate check stroller & car seat if there is no extra seating for it. (If there is extra seating the flight attendants will always free that seat up for the baby and move people around-Southwest, you can choose your own seating and its A+)
  7. Depending on his temperament, he is either sleeping, up and playing or fussy because he wants to sleep or eat. If the third is happening, I nurse him while everyone is getting on the plane until we are up in the air. He usually passes out or gets up to play a bit more. I will wrap him and walk to aisles (haven’t needed to yet) to get him to sleep if we are in the air and he isn’t going down. Lots of parents to this. People get it.


5. Remember to have fun and take lots of photos and make memories! <3 Looking back on all our trips, I wouldn’t have done it any other way. His shelves are now filled with souvenirs and photos of all the places we went when he was just a tiny guy.  Plus, at a young age, they sleep ALOT, so it really is pretty easy.  Life with LO always have there challenges, life is now different. Crying, blow outs, fussiness…its just part of life at times, if you can embrace it, then no matter what you go and do whether it is the grocery store or flying, will just be like how you do everything else. You find what works for you and you get through it!  #Momlife am I right!?

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How To Eat Healthy When You Are On The Go

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When you’re home, you are master of your domain. You control what comes into the kitchen and what lands on your children’s plates. But what happens when you’re not at home – when you’re traveling, fighting traffic, waiting at the airport, running late or stuck at the mall and your child is starving?

The fear of drive through and fast food restaurants has been drilled into most of us, but sometimes there’s no avoiding a meal out at a less than healthy establishment. So here are some tips and guidelines for smart ordering and healthy practices when eating out.

1. Fast Food Doesn’t Always Mean Fried Food.

In response to consumer demand, it’s increasingly easier to find healthy, convenient alternatives to fried foods on fast food menus. Opt for anything that is raw, steamed, grilled, roasted, or baked, or try an entrée-sized salad. Keep your eye out for vegetarian options or if you eat meat organic leaner cuts of meats like skinless chicken breasts or turkey breast.

2. Avoid High-Fat Add-Ons.

Request salad dressing, sauce, cheese, or toppings on the side so you can apply sparingly, instead of drenching your meal in empty calories and through the roof table salt which raises sodium levels.

3. Mind the Portions.

Restaurant portions have been growing in size for years (from large to enormous). In the 1950s, the average size of a hamburger was 1.5 ounces, while today’s burgers weigh in at around 8 ounces. Share entrees between your family or take the other half of it to go!

4. Drink Water.

Soda, sweetened iced tea and lemonades, energy drinks and most juices are loaded with high fructose corn syrup and empty calories. Make H2O the beverage of choice for everyone, and skip the plastic bottles and Styrofoam cups by refilling your own container, like a stainless steel water bottle, with filtered water. Sick of plain water? Try adding a squeeze of lemon or using sparkling spring water instead.

5. Avoid the “Cream”, Opt for the “Color.”

Meal choices with the words Alfredo, a la crème, au gratin, or described as “creamy” will likely be smothered in a heavy, artificially enhanced sauce. On the other hand, foods that reflect the colors of the rainbow are usually a healthier choice. Many kid’s meals end up as a plate of “beige”, all starch, breads, and sauces. Picking a colorful fruit or veggie salad will automatically up the nutritional content of your meal.

6. Make Substitutions.

Don’t be afraid to speak up about the ingredients or preparation of your food if it will make it healthier. Request salsa or mustard, instead of mayonnaise or sugar-filled ketchup for your sandwich. Request butter for your baked potato instead of sour cream. Ask to have a side salad or fruit instead of fries. Ask for meat to be grilled as “light” as possible. The extent to which servers will go to make you happy might surprise you.

7. Find the Healthy Options!

Use this fantastic tool from the Eat Well app to map out restaurants in the area that serve organic, local and healthy fare. With a little research and a GPS, you’re instantly connected to restaurants that share your values.

8. As Always, Plan Ahead.

Keep your purse, bag, and car in a lunch box ready for moments when hunger strikes and a healthy snack is in need. Mixed nuts, apple, veggies like carrots and hummus or celery and almond butter and even organic air popped popcorn which stay fresh and transport easily – especially with the array of cool, non-toxic containers available like glass.

Live Well!



Weekend Treats! Still Healthy?

We all love a good, juicy burger.  Food is meant to be enjoyable.  Many people think eating healthy has to be boring, taste horrible and a somber experience. Biggest. Lie. Ever. Personally, I find eating a healthy, delicious meal more tasteful and enjoyable than your processed twinkie or burrito at Del.  Not only that, but you don’t feel hung over, bloated or gross after you eat it. So how do you do it when you eat out?


1. Find a restaurant that serves locally grown + raised food &/or grass-fed organic options or that has healthy options.

Many restaurants will work with you. There are so many restaurants that offer this these days, it blows my mind. I just moved to Chicago and I was shocked that so many burger places had your grass fed burger. Delicious. We aren’t used to eating out that frequently, but after I saw the frequency of these restaurants and the tasty options, I have turned into quite the regular. (Oh, Lord hide my wallet.)

2. Swap out for healthier options/alternatives.

Get the gluten free bun or pizza crust or ask the burger on a bed of lettuce or wrapped in lettuce. Get the organic or raw cheese on the pizza. If you are staying away for dairy, don’t get it as it will only exacerbate your intolerance or gassy symptoms. (If you want to find out more about food intolerances/r would like help with uncomfortable symptoms after eating food in general or certain foods, please go to  Get a veggie side dish.  Use stevia or raw honey for sweetener. Get grilled instead of fried. Ask your server what oil they use and if it’s not olive , coconut or grapeseed oil, ask to go without. Vegetable oil and canola oil turn into carcinogens (cancer causing oxidized molecules) when heated and the hydrogenated fats aren’t beneficial for the body and contribute to many potential health imbalances.

3.  Get the dressing on the side.

You can always add it, but you have the power to determine how much and many times you’ll realize you don’t need as much as they throw in there. There is a lot of calories packed in dressing. Opt for olive oil, lemon slices and salt, balsamic, a light vinaigrette or a lighter version.

With all that being said, enjoy your food. Good food + good drink + good company. Now that’s a good weekend indeed.


A quick note on dairy/gluten/food intolerances. My husband loves pizza. He can eat dairy and gluten no problem and living with me, I made sure his body was good with it.Although he doesn’t hardly ever eat gluten because we focus on a more paleo, pegan lifestyle in our home. Even though his body for now doesn’t react to it, we do do gluten free/organic,raw cheese when we make it.  We also don’t do dairy (I don’t eat it), unless it’s our occasional pizza (we use raw/organic cheese or he uses raw cheese on his eggs.) If he does do milk, we do raw/organic. I talk about raw milk a little bit in Episode 7 of the Living Well Podcast.  I will cover the benefits of raw/unpasteurized dairy soon on Live Well, but in short- raw milk/cheese/dairy contains the enzymes necessary to break down the lactose in the dairy, making digesting it much, much easier. Pasteurization kills off all of the enzymes required to metabolize and break down the dairy properly, which results in people having a very difficult time digesting dairy and consequently could cause leaky gut syndrome, intolerances and digestive issues down the line.  I will also address gluten in more depth, but let me just say this. It is very rare to have a gluten allergy, BUT it is extremely common to have a gluten intolerance.  Many people have intolerances to many foods do to repitition/gmo/insufficient digestion-hydrochloric acid issues/leaky gut/ processed foods + more. I will cover that all in depth. Back to the huz…he will have the gluten free/organic/no nitrate-nitrite meats on his pizza and loves it.  I say all this all to tell you that getting your spouse on board can be hard, but if you make the alternative switches, you can do the food he/she loves and you love, without creating additional inflammation/irritation in the body.  It’s all about making the step in the healthy direction, especially when it comes to eating out.  Treat yo’self, but also treat your body well!

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Live Well!