My Top 5 Tips for Traveling with a Toddler

Traveling with a toddler can be tough but we have greatly enjoyed bringing ours on our adventures! We have been lucky enough to travel with my parents to Mexico the last two years with our son Oakes and this year Emily and her family joined us so we had two babies with us and a whole tribe of adults to help out! Here is my top 5 tips for traveling with little ones and I hope it comes in handy for your next vacay!


1) Have a pacifier, bottle or sippy cup handy so your baby can pop their ears.

Our son has flown a total of 4 times and all-in-all, he does a pretty good job. Flying is noisy and my son has always slept with a white noise machine so he’s spent most of his flying time asleep. It’s a good, constant hum. Just make sure to pack something for your baby to suck on so they can pop their ears if needed with the pressure change, a couple of their favorite snacks, a book or two and a small toy to occupy them while they’re awake. And don’t forget to change their diaper right before you board so you can avoid the tiny airplane restrooms.

2) Choose your toiletries wisely. 

As for toiletries, each person gets 1 quart size bag with 3, 3 oz containers inside so as a mom packing for a little one, you need to be efficient. In Oakes bag, I packed baby sunscreen (we like Neutrogena), dish soap and infant acetaminophen. I would choose medicine or diaper rash cream over things like shampoo, lotion and bubble bath that are almost always supplied by your hotel or resort or anything that can be purchased once you get there. The first year we went, I didn’t pack dish soap (didn’t even think of it) and I ended up washing bottles with body wash. As far as diapers, plan for 5-7 diapers a day and at least 2 packs of wipes (you will use them for more than messy diapers). I believe we packed 40-50 diapers and 3 reusable swim diapers for an 8 day stay and that was the perfect amount for our son. Also keep in mind that powders are okay to carry and do not count against your 3 toiletries, so pack a non-aerosol dry shampoo like Primally Pure Dry Shampoo and throw a small container of baby powder in your bag for your babies bum and to dust onto your feet after the beach to get the sand off.

3) Don’t worry about purchasing your own milk.

If your baby drinks formula, yes you can pack it. Just make sure you put it somewhere accessible as you will need to take it out of your bag and place it in a bin for TSA to check it out. As far as white milk for toddlers, don’t worry about buying all you can carry before you get on your flight. In Mexico and many other countries, they drink irradiated cow’s milk which is simply a different pasteurization process that extends the shelf life of the milk and allows for it to be unrefrigerated prior to it being opened. It’s still the same, good ‘ole cows milk we drink at home, just on the warmer side. This didn’t bother our son at all and he had no issues, upset tummy or change in stools from it.

4) Ask your hotel or resort staff for a crib ahead of time

Don’t worry about having to pack and check a giant pack n’ play. Most hotels and resorts will provide you with one, you just have to ask!

5) Bring a stroller

An umbrella stroller is a great, inexpensive option for vacation that will make your life easier and won’t matter as much if it gets damaged on your trip or flight. Some people will question even bringing a stroller at all, my advice? Bring it.


As far as accommodations go, everyone we have met from taxi drivers, restaurant staff to hotel concierge have been above and beyond helpful with everything from high chairs, getting us extra milk for the baby to opening doors and loading up our stroller for us. Traveling with family is also a huge added bonus. Being able to take turns with the babies and having grandparents on stand-bye took a lot of the pressure off. I hope you found some of these tips helpful and you are already planning your next trip!

Good luck & enjoy!



Refocusing After Vacation

If you follow either myself or @laurasmithwellness on Instagram, you know that we were on vacation in Mexico during the last part of February. We were fortunate enough to be gifted a family vacation by our parents who took us all down to Playa del Carmen for 8 days, babies and all. This was my first experience with all inclusive and boy did we enjoy it. All you can eat and any cuisine you can imagine, endless chips and guac and all the Bahama Mama’s & Paloma’s you could drink. We thoroughly enjoyed a break from cooking, working & any semblance of a routine.

Flash forward to a good ole’ fashioned Minnesota snow storm welcoming us back to reality. Vacation came to an abrupt halt and it was a bit of a struggle adjusting back to life as we knew it. Vacations are meant to be enjoyed but I came up with some tips to help ease you back to reality and get you back on track with your wellness lifestyle post-vacay.

Drink so much freaking water. 

You’d be amazed at what chugging some good old H2O can do to help clear your system and get you back on track. Kicking up your water intake will help replenish your cells from all that sugar & alcohol you consumed on the beach. Be prepared to pee SO FREAKING MUCH as your body adjusts. Everyone’s intake goals should be specific to them but get yourself a 24 oz water bottle and aim for 3-4 of those a day as a good baseline.

Pack in the veggies. 

You are an adult. Adults eat vegetables. I can’t help but laugh when I meet full grown adults who don’t eat their vegetables. Your body NEEDS these essential vitamins and minerals and you will feel 1000 times better when you consistently fuel your body with what it needs. Especially after a week of endless treats, filling your plate with fiber dense veggies will help you feel satisfied. When you’re satisfied you crave less sugar. It’s a win-win. With that being said, you need to find vegetables that you DO like. If you don’t like broccoli, try cauliflower or asparagus. If bolder flavors are your thing, try munching on some sweet baby peppers. If you can’t stomach raw veggies, toss them in a pan with some ghee or olive oil and garlic. Trust me. Eat. Your. Veggies.

Cut out the sugar. 

I know this one is easier said than done but your body responds to what you fuel it with. If you pack your body full of sugar, it will continue to crave sugar. So by cutting it out- just for a few days- you are giving yourself the opportunity to break that addiction and help you kick the cravings. Be mindful of the hidden sources of sugars like pressed juices, fresh fruit, and yogurts. You may feel like you’re making a better choice but these often have just as much sugar as a can of pop or candy bar.

Ease your way back into your fitness routine. 

While on vacation, we walked a lot but it was not the typical 30-40 minutes of heart pumping work that I was used to. That meant that even in a week, my conditioning was lessened. Do not sabotage yourself by going full boar into an intense cardio session, feel out of shape and then give up. Plan 3-5 workouts for your week, listen to your body and modify if necessary. Easing into your routine will help your body adjust and give you the energy boost you need to keep going.

Be kind  

Do not waste time feeling guilty about the foods and drinks you consumed a week ago. Vacation is supposed to be fun and that includes treats and foods you don’t typically reach for on a weekly basis. I want to challenge you to stop thinking about foods as “good” and “bad”. Instead think about how you want to feel and what foods will get you there. Be kind to yourself as you ease back into your routine and focus on one decision at a time to get you there.

Oh, and start planning your next vacation now.