How To Successfully Travel with Breastmilk

How To Successfully Travel with Breastmilk

"Something we have had to deal with time and again is transporting breast milk either in a checked bag or carry on.  Both of our kids were/are breastfed.  There were times that we knew we would need a stash of milk upon arrival (for a babysitter), but there wouldn't be time to store up enough before we needed it.  I have put together several resources and tips for breastfeeding mothers who need or want to travel without worrying about their baby's breastmilk."

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15 Awesome Ways to Entertain A Toddler While Traveling

15 Awesome Ways to Entertain A Toddler While Traveling

We've traveled with a toddler.  Actually, we travel with TWO toddlers now.  We consider ourselves master toddler entertainers. HA! But seriously, we have conquered toddler boredom time and time again. OH, and while we do love a good movie, we don’t always resort to screen time to entertain our two. We’ve compiled a list of the most effective toys, books, and games that have captivated our toddlers while were trekking around the world with them. If you’re looking for toddler entertainment inspo, you’ve come to the right place!

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25 Travel Must Haves for Babies & Toddlers

25 Travel Must Haves for Babies & Toddlers

"We've traveled with a baby.  We've traveled with a toddler.  We've traveled with a baby AND toddler.   We've also traveled with a lot of crappy products and a lot of REALLY HELPFUL products. 

Here a list of the 25 BEST products we have used while traveling with our kids!"

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Top 5 Ways to Overcome Jet Lag with Kids

Top 5 Ways to Overcome Jet Lag with Kids

In our experience, jet lag can really hinder the first days of your new adventure.  We have spent days upon days living with no sleep, trying to enjoy ourselves in a new country, but failing miserably.  We have also arrived at a destination 8 hours ahead of our normal time zone with no jet lag at all -- a miracle!  Through trial and error, we have found several ways to help overcome, minimize or even avoid jet-lag all together with our kids.

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6 Reasons an Airport Lounge is Worth the Money

6 Reasons an Airport Lounge is Worth the Money

Sometimes a layover is inevitable. If you’re traveling with children, especially if you’re travelling alone with children, having the option of an airport lounge is a game changer. Between the comfy seating, free food/drink & clean bathrooms, there isn’t much to complain about. Anything that makes travel with children easier and more comfortable is a win in our book.

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12 Tips to Thrive while Flying with Toddlers

12 Tips to Thrive while Flying with Toddlers

“The real question we as parents need to ask ourselves is: Is the short duration of the flight worth skipping an entire adventure?  For us, the answer is no.  We take them. We get through the flights. We get through the mile high poop diapers & melt downs. We get through by finding some really great ways of dealing with all that comes with bringing the kids along for life's ultimate adventures.”

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The Best of San Antonio, Texas with Kids

The Best of San Antonio, Texas with Kids

We recently spent a week in San Antonio while visiting my husband on one of his work trips.  This multicultural city was more than I had imagined it was going to be.  I was born and raised in South East Texas for 11.5 years before moving to Virginia.  I am familiar with Texas, but I was happily surprised with this family friendly city and all of it’s delicious food.

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3 Days in Budapest with Kids

3 Days in Budapest with Kids

"Budapest has to be on our most surprisingly wonderful cities we've ever traveled too.  As a matter of fact, it's one of the few places I would visit again just to have more time there.  It's beautiful, friendly, family oriented and feels especially magical when standing on the banks of the Danube.  If you're making a list of must-see places, put Budapest towards the top."

Tavia

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Paying for Travel: 9 Ways We Make It Work

Paying for Travel: 9 Ways We Make It Work

"One question I always get when people ask me about traveling is "How do you afford it?"  Well, let me be really honest with you: WE. ARE. NOT. RICH.  We do not have sponsorships. (Although I wouldn't turn them down ;) -- HINT HINT AIRBNB) WE PAY OUT OF POCKET FOR ALL OF OUR LEISURE TRAVEL. We are a military family with two kids living off of ONE paycheck.  The only answer I can think of is: Priority. We prioritize traveling.  We don't do huge home improvement projects, drive fancy cars, live in huge house, etc.  We put our money where our interests are: travel.  Here are 8 ways we are able to afford traveling more than once a year:"

Tavia

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GUEST POST: Jenny - An Adventure Worth Taking

GUEST POST: Jenny - An Adventure Worth Taking

"My husband and I are missionaries in the Baltic States and frequently fly throughout Europe for meetings and conferences and to the United States for support raising and to visit family.  With that said, our kids see their bags packed and do not make a fuss about it.  They don’t see the need anymore.  I have a daughter that is 8 and a son that is 4."

Jenny

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Travel Beds: Size Matters

Travel Beds: Size Matters

"There are a million options out there for Travel Cribs (AKA baby cots, pack n plays, etc).  I am not even about to go into comparing them ALL to each other, but I wanted to share this option since so many of my parent-friends are struggling with their tall toddlers and where they sleep on trips!"

Tavia

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Prague with Kids

Prague with Kids

"Prague is a gorgeous city in the Czech Republic with so much history.  Before our trip, we had heard many great things about this destination and we were not disappointed. We traveled before peak season and found everything to be relatively slow, but the major attractions still had A LOT of tourists – I am assuming peak season would be almost unbearable."
-Tavia

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Traveling Through the Trimesters & with a Baby

Traveling Through the Trimesters & with a Baby

"Since becoming a family of three we have found new ways to enjoy ourselves. We no longer spend our nights exploring the local bar scene, but we now have a new travel tradition that we love: we always eat dinner together in the hallway of our hotel while our baby sleeps.  We have ordered carry out and room service, but we still sit together where we can talk and enjoy each other’s company.  Traveling has always been a way for us to connect and this is a new quirk that we both get a kick out of.  It sounds silly, but it’s ours and we love it. We have adapted to this new normal.  Life with a baby is different that life without one.  Life with two babies will be even more different, but I know when this baby gets here we will settle in like all families do.  Our life will go on and be twice as exciting as it is now."

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Part Two: Braving Europe – Travel Days

Part Two: Braving Europe – Travel Days

"With a very transient trip, I tried to plan out our travel days before we even left the United States.  What I found is that you can’t always book train tickets in advance for European travel and I also learned that there are many ways to book European train tickets and it all depends on what country/region you are traveling to/from.  I spent a lot of time researching the most effective, most comfortable, and cheapest way to get from city to city.  We knew we would be carrying all of our bags plus a stroller and our baby, so we needed to be ready to pack light and move efficiently.

-Tavia"

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Braving Europe (Part 1) - Booking, Planning, Packing

Braving Europe (Part 1) - Booking, Planning, Packing

"Overall, the stress of the planning/booking/packing was totally worth it.  Our trip was absolutely amazing.  Jimmy always tells me that it was truly “the trip of a lifetime” because we were able to see so many things and get to so many places in 15 days.  I would (and will) do it again in a heart beat.

-Tavia"

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What to consider before booking a flight with kids

What to consider before booking a flight with kids

Seat Selection

This is my Daughter playing on the floor during our flight from FLorida to Arizona. first class bulk head - delta  

This is my Daughter playing on the floor during our flight from FLorida to Arizona. first class bulk head - delta  

Where you sit on the airplane will make or break your trip.  The best seat on the airplane is the First Class bulkhead, but most of us aren’t rich, so the second best is the coach bulkhead seat.  If you can’t get either of these, try for the back row, aisle seat if you are alone.  If you and another adult will be traveling with the kids then I suggest one of you booking the window seat, one book the aisle seat and hope no one takes the middle.  The good news is if someone does take the middle seat, they will definitely be willing to switch seats with you so you guys can sit together.  If you have multiple children traveling with you, the same concept applies, except that you will be purchasing a seat for the additional children. 

Time of departure/arrival

When booking tickets for our trip, I think a lot about what time we leave and what time we will be arriving.  If I can, I try to book departure for a time after our normal waking time and an arrival that gives us plenty of time before the normal bedtime.  However, this is not always possible and if you are traveling internationally, you need to see our other post about dealing with jetlag and kids.

My husband and daughter both asleep on a "to EARLY" flight

My husband and daughter both asleep on a "to EARLY" flight

Infant in Arms

When you book a ticket for yourself and a baby, you do not have to get them their own seat.  Children under 2 are allowed to fly as an “infant in arms” at no additional cost. (You do have to pay taxes on them for international flights)  Airlines always recommend your child to have their own seat and that they be in a car seat or child restraint.  Once you book your ticket, you can go in and add the “infant in arms” note on the airline website.  If you can’t figure out, give them a call and they can add it for you.  It must be on your ticket or your baby may not be able to get through TSA or board.

Don’t kid yourself.

I have booked so many plane tickets and logged hundreds of hours searching for the best deal.  There is a time a place to save $20.  Taking a 35-minute layover versus a 2 hour layover is not the time for that.  You are not traveling alone, you do not have control over delays or distance between gates, and chances are, you are not an Olympic runner.  (If you are…you still need to reconsider)  I have fallen victim to this.  I have sprinted from one end of the Minneapolis airport to the other and still missed a flight.  Don’t be me.  Spend the $20, get a reasonable layover, keep your sanity.

The baby bassinet (international flight)

That's our daughter in there!  The straps Are Required to be strapped while shes asleep! (Delta)

That's our daughter in there!  The straps Are Required to be strapped while shes asleep! (Delta)

Everyone with a small infant wants this on their International flight.  For us, we had to call Delta to get the bulkhead seats, then we had to go to the gate agents early and remind them we wanted the bassinet.  Once we got on the plane, we made sure we asked again.  We ended up with the bassinet on both long legs and it was helpful to be able to lay her down when she slept.  It gave us a good break.  Every airline does this differently and the bassinet can be elusive, so be sure to take care of yourself and call the airline.  A few days before your big flight, call them again and just be sure it’s all still good to go.

As always, we love your feedback, questions and additional tips!  Please comment below or contact us!

Fly Brave.  Travel Often.  See everything.

-Tavia