Gluten Free Mama: Newborn Travel Tips

Sedona Arizona - Coffee Pot Rock from Airport MesaSedona, AZ is best known for its red rocks and its vortexes. Its an amazing place. I am grateful to return again…but this time it will be different. Little Ava will be with me.

My goal when I head there next week is to open up to the calm. If I don’t plan well this will be impossible.

When I had Ava so many people told me about how my life was going to change travel wise – “you will have to slow down” or “you will never be able to take a long haul flight while she is young.”

These people don’t know me very well. They haven’t seen my passport. They haven’t been over to my house to see the wall of travel books. They don’t understand who I am deep in my heart.

So at 8 weeks, Ms. Ava is off! We are doing the AZ trip as a practice run to the next trip we take: heading to Italy in December. I am in preparation mode trying to eliminate every possible variable that I can control so when the unexpected shows up I am not exhausted by everything else.

Here is what I have figured out so far.

Renting vs Dragging. Wow. I could drag just about everything with me that I really need..or I could rent it? Really? My brilliant friend Heather told me this awesome travel secret. The baby rental place I found in Sedona does not have a swing BUT, I found a rental agency in Phoenix that will bring the swing to me at the car rental place. SOLD!! I can’t believe how valuable it is to know these place exist. If they are local they will drop things right at your hotel. If not, check out options next to the airport you are flying into. I am going to do this again in Rome depending on what we need.

Car Seat Drills. I don’t drive Ava anywhere because I live in Manhattan. So she never goes in her car seat. We took her out for her first test run (beyond her trip home from the hospital) and she hated it. She screamed for 2 hours straight on the way there and back. I got a different car seat, specifically an infant carrier one. I mistakenly bought a car seat that goes from 5pds to 50pds thinking I could skip the infant car seat because we drive so rarely it seemed silly to get one for an infant and one for later. BIG MISTAKE.

Ava has been cruising around NYC in her car seat strapped to her new umbrella stroller. I have a Britax B-Nimble because the car seat clicks into the stroller in one step AND it has a reclining seat for a smaller baby. AWESOME. Weighs 15 pds. Great for jumping on the subway, using with the carseat, and napping for Ava.

Breast Feeding on the plane? Yep. Going to have to do that. Its a 5 hour flight and a 2 hour drive to get to Sedona. I have to feed her close to the time I get off the plane so I can make it to Sedona without a hiccup. I am bringing some pumped milk as well. BUT the bigger question was how is that going to work? Enter the Warm Milk Bag.

This bag has a breast feeding cushion hidden on the side of the bag. I am a bag freak in terms of efficiency and this bag really meets the mark. There is a ton of room inside for all kinds of diaper bag things including a bottle cooler and there is enough room for my ipad and computer. Awesome!

Reducing what I am carrying is a HUGE focus for me right now. Any reduction is a BONUS! I am the person that refuses to check a bag no matter how long the trip. With an infant this is no longer an option but I still want to travel light. Instead of taking a full on nursing cover I am bringing my Latch-On a clip that turns an ordinary blanket into a nursing cover. One less thing to carry? LOVE IT!!

Soothing solutions? Check. My lactation consultant suggested I get a 10 vial box of Baby Bliss Gripe Water to soothe Ava if she has gas or other eating related pains along with a Vibrucol Drops. I love that the Gripe Water is self contained and I just need to pop open the little vial.

Wheels up PHX! Wish us luck! as we embark on this big adventure!

xoxo Brandi


Creative Commons License Photo Credit: Al_HikesAZ via Compfight

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A Welcomed Life

Gluten Free Pregnancy Baby Feet

Ava arrived with fanfare and grace. And now she is settling into the startling overwhelm of the world outside of mama’s tummy.

Thank you to everyone that has been so supportive. I have been graced by the warmth and love of others during this process of introducing a new being to the planet. She was welcomed by so many that were holding a tender space for her landing.

I didn’t expect my pregnancy to be like this – something that changed me so profoundly. What is different? Beyond what every other new mother experiences?

Its changed my relationship with my gluten allergy. Its made me feel much more powerful and in control of taking care of me both mentally and physically. Its open a door that I didn’t see before. 

In the coming months I am going to expand on the body of knowledge I have collected and turn it into a book so others can have access to the same information. Stay tuned.

There is so much I want to share that I have learned over the past few weeks. But most importantly I have had to lean into those around me for support and to RECEIVE that support.

Receiving has always been so hard for me. I tend to reject offers for help from the smallest to the largest. But what I am really doing is rejecting love people are trying to send my way.

As I feel into the grace of receiving the life that has arrived to join my family I am aiming to get better at receiving. I looked up receive in the dictionary this afternoon and found the definitions that were most meaningful:

  • to act as a receptacle or container for
  • to assimilate through the mind or senses
  • to permit to enter

New moms are often forced to receive. From gifts to home cooked meals to friendly moms that come by to teach you how to soothe your baby to everything in between. We are in a weakened state right after giving birth which opens us up. We need help so we accept it. But I pondered so many times over the last 20 plus days how I could perceive help differently after this time is over. How can I receive the love that people send my way – making a container for it and taking in it through my mind and senses and really permitting it to enter?

This is one of the gifts my daughter has already brought me – a heightened awareness of how to receive now and in the future.

xoxo Brandi


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