4 Tried-and-True Tips for Traveling While Pregnant

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This past weekend, Baby C had another “voyage,” a coastal California road trip! Antonio and I began in Monterey, passed through Carmel, Big Sur, and Pismo Beach, and finished our weekend with friends in Santa Barbara and Santa Monica. Here are some fun pix to get us started today. ūüôā

The beaches of Monterey are like nothing I've ever seen, full of wildlife and  deep teal waters.

The beaches of Monterey are like nothing I’ve ever seen, full of wildlife and deep teal waters.

The breathtaking views of Big Sur

The breathtaking views of Big Sur

Road trip selfie

Road trip selfie in the rental car

Posing in fairy wings at the Summer Solstice festival in Santa Barbara

Posing in fairy wings at the Summer Solstice festival in Santa Barbara

And as promised, here it is–the “sequel” blog post to last week’s “The Many Voyages of Baby C.” I will share 4 foolproof tips for traveling during pregnancy.

Traveling during pregnancy can be tricky, especially if you have certain unpleasant symptoms (i.e. 1st trimester morning sickness) or if you’re further along and are starting to feel as big and cumbersome as the plane itself. However, there are some universal tips to comfy–and healthy–travel during pregnancy, and I’m super-psyched to share them with you!

I’ve tried all of them, and they came in handy–especially during the monster marathon from Lebanon back to San Diego.¬†We had a 5-hour flight, a 3-hour layover, and finally a 10-hour flight. Cra-zy.

So, here they are–4 awesome tips for traveling while pregnant. I hope they help you during your next vacay!

Follow these travel tips, and you'll be full of energy when you get to your destination!

Follow these travel tips, and you might just be ready to dance the night away when you get to your destination!

  1. Hydrate – This seems like common sense, since you’re always supposed to drink plenty of water during pregnancy. However, in all the excitement of checking in, security, boarding, and flying, it’s easy to forget all about your 8 daily glasses of water. Staying hydrated throughout your journey will keep you much more comfortable, since it decreases the risk of edema, fluid retention, headaches, and dizziness. Plus, it will help to balance out that disgusting, dry, recirculated air on the plane. Well worth the extra bathroom breaks!
  2. Stretch frequently –¬†On my 10-hour flight, I got up every two hours–and not just to pee. I also did lunges, calf raises, and arm stretches. Stretching and exercise periods are beneficial for several¬†reasons: they get your blood pumping, prevent excessive swelling in the legs and feet, and give you something to look forward to, making the flight go by faster.
  3. Grab healthy snacks – Airport stores are notorious for selling un-nutritious convenience snacks¬†that are full of sodium and sugar–both things you should avoid before flying, and really all the time. Even the healthier options, like trail mix, are sold in ginormous bags that have about 8 servings. So unless you’re traveling with a companion (and no, your baby doesn’t count, wink, wink), don’t buy those. It’s¬†just too tempting to polish off a whole bag by yourself, and I don’t know about you, but I like to save my indulgences for yummy¬†restaurants once I’ve reached my destination! Instead, opt for snacks like yogurt, fruit, or Kind bars, and if you’re¬†eating a meal, strive for healthy options like salads, sandwiches, and low-fat wraps.
  4. Get some sleep –¬†We all know it’s easy to feel fatigued during pregnancy even on a normal day, so a long trip, especially over various time zones, can be disaster. Low-dose melatonin is okay to take during pregnancy. (As always, check with your own doctor before you try¬†it.) ¬†Melatonin regulates your light-dark cycle and lessens the severity of jet-lag. If you’re taking a long flight, especially an overnight one, sleep as much as possible. Also, try to sleep at the “nighttime” of whatever time zone you’re in, even if it doesn’t feel like night to you.

Moms-to-be out there, what works for you when you travel? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

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The Many Voyages of Baby C: Reflections on Traveling While Pregnant

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Antonio and I love traveling, and we do it fairly often. Whether it’s a short weekend getaway or a long vacay in an exotic locale, we love the stimulation and inspiration that comes from seeing new cities–and new countries.

The wanderlust has not stopped since I’ve found out I was pregnant, and Baby C is one well-traveled embryo. Thank goodness flights are okay until Week 36 of normal pregnancy. That means I still have 13 weeks to indulge until I have to hibernate for a while.

Here are some of Baby C’s many voyages, and my reflections on them. Enjoy!

  • Mexico City –¬†About a week after Antonio and I learned the news of the blessed event, we flew to lovely Mexico City to visit some good friends who live there. Here’s a blog post I wrote about the trip. We enjoyed delicious food, the Bazaar del Sabado (an eclectic collection of art and various types of handmade goods, all set to a dance-inducing soundtrack of traditional music), and my own personal favorite, the Pyramids of the Sun and Moon. On top of¬†la Piramide de la Luna,¬†Antonio and I reflected upon the wonder of the tiny life inside me, and marveled at the backdrop of timelessness stretching before us. Muy bueno, indeed.
Feb 2014: On top of la Pyramide de la Luna, after a moment of reflection.

Feb 2014: On top of la Piramide de la Luna, after a moment of reflection.

  • Los Angeles – Well, okay, we didn’t go to downtown LA or Hollywood Boulevard. Antonio and I have been there, done that (although Baby C hasn’t yet). Instead, we took a mini road trip to¬†the suburbs of LA to hang out with friends and go to a BBQ party. The weekend was relaxing and easy, and I would totally recommend short road trips to other pregos; they’re a great way to ease into traveling during pregnancy.
  • ¬†Pittsburgh, PA – Baby C and I have been to Pittsburgh twice, to hang out¬†with the soon-to-be grandparents (aka my parents) and uncle-in-training, as well as the great Grandmas and my aunts, uncles, and cousins. Both Pittsburgh trips have been filled with many¬†of my favorite things: family, food, and shopping! Incidentally, Pittsburgh was where Baby C tasted his/her first chocolate cake (from Aladdin’s, which has desserts that are out of this world). The cake went over well with Baby C, who became extremely active, kicking and moving energetically. At this point, almost-Grandma concluded that Baby C must be a girl who loves chocolate. ūüėČ Maybe, or perhaps Baby C had just experienced his/her first sugar high.
  • ¬†Houston, TX –¬†Baby C and I ventured to Houston for a weekend of bonding with my Chicago bestie. There, we indulged in the incredible cuisine of this fine city. The restaurants are so good that locals often do “food tours,” trying several restaurants in a day. We did a mini version of this, and I exposed Baby C to some interesting foods like Vietnamese shaved ice (totally different than the stuff in Hawaii. It’s creamier, with your choice of fruits and exotic drizzles like lychee) and che (a bubble tea with tapioca bubbles and so much more, like red bean. Delicious). Naturally, there was shopping and, even better yet, the Life in Color festival! Amazing DJs played in the park, and washable neon paint shot out of sprayers onstage, while concertgoers bought their own bottles of paint and doused each other in color. It was the second concert Baby C had attended (The first was an outdoor concert in San Diego with yoga.), and I think he/she appreciated the music and dancing!
April 2014: After the first paint splash at the Life in Color festival. It got a lot messier. ;)

April 2014: After the first paint splash at the Life in Color festival. It got a lot messier. ūüėČ

April 2014: Mouthwatering, Baby C-approved delicacies in Houston, courtesy of my friend Janice!

April 2014: Mouthwatering, Baby C-approved delicacies in Houston, courtesy of my friend Janice!

  • London –¬†This was part of our latest voyage, and was especially exciting because I’m part English, so Baby C was able to experience part of his/her roots. Baby C did well on the 10-hour flight from San Diego to London, kicking occasionally and sleeping most of the time. In the city, we enjoyed spending time with Antonio’s brother and girlfriend, who showed us the best restaurants and sights, and spent an awesome afternoon with us¬†in Hyde Park. Other highlights: a traditional English tea with Antonio’s college friends (Baby C loved the desserts.), rides on the tube, a trip to the London Eye, and shopping in Oxford Circus.
June 2014: A brilliant tea-time spread at the W Hotel in London. My favorite was the purple dessert.

June 2014: A brilliant tea-time spread at the W Hotel in London. My favorite was the purple dessert.

June 2014: Running off that tea with some high knees in Hyde Park.

June 2014: Running off the tea-time treats with some high knees in Hyde Park later that day.

  • Lebanon –¬†Here, Baby C uncovered more of his/her heritage–50% of it, to be exact! Our goal is to visit all of the countries that make up our heritage as a family. Antonio is easy (100% Lebanese), but I’m part¬†German, Croatian, English and Irish! In Lebanon, Baby C met many family members, such as his/her other set of almost grandparents, aunts, and extended family, and spent time on the beach and in the mountains. We also had a wonderful time at the wedding of two of our great friends. And, of course, we enjoyed the amazing Lebanese meals and desserts–so many, it’s impossible to pick a favorite. I look forward to our next visit to Lebanon after Baby C is born, when we can find out what his/her favorite is!
June 2014: Beach selfie with  Baby C's soon-to-be aunts in Lebanon!

June 2014: Beach selfie with Baby C’s soon-to-be aunts in Lebanon!

Soon, we’ll be taking a trip up the coast of California, and after the London-Lebanon trip, I think Baby C and I will find that to be a piece of cake! Next week, I’ll be sure to share some lifesaving pregnancy travel tips that worked wonders for me–especially on the long flights.

Preg readers out there, what voyages have you and your unborn baby taken together? What was your favorite and least favorite, and how did you and baby cope with the travel? I’d love to hear your stories. ūüôā

Prego Fashion at 5 Months: 4 Mini-Bump Flattering Styles for Hot Mamas

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I’m now at 22 weeks, and Baby C has made¬†him/herself known–in the form of a little bump starting just below my belly button. Obviously, my fave bandage dresses are out of the question–at least for the next few months. But, awesomely enough, so many of the latest fashion trends just happen to be bump-flattering!

I define an outfit as bump-flattering if it meets a few strict criteria: a.) comfort, b.) room to grow, and c.) overall cuteness. Here, I will tell you 4 of my favorite looks that never fail to get me the compliment, “What? You’re 5 months pregnant? Where are you hiding it?!”

Harem pants – They’re everywhere, and I couldn’t be happier about it. Harem pants are perfect for the mid-pregnancy silhouette because¬†they have a high, stretchy waist and are roomier in the lower ab region–genius! Their colorful patterns make them an eye-catching look any time of year, but I love to “summer-ize” them by pairing them with a sleeveless blouse (tucked in) or a favorite tank top (over the pants).

Harem pants with a blousy, tucked-in top look dynamite on the preg bod! I enjoyed taking this fun, California-style look to London. Pants, jacket, and tank top: Body Central

Harem pants with a blousy, tucked-in top look simply dynamite! I enjoyed taking this California style to London this past week. Pants, Jacket, and Tank Top: Body Central.

Harem pants under a tank top are great for a day in the park. This picture was taken a couple of days ago in Hyde Park in London. Pants and shirt from Body Central (links below).

Harem pants under a tank top are great for a day in the park. Pants, Tank Top, and Bandeau: Body Central.

High-waisted flared skirts –¬†Your bump¬†starts at the lower abs, and chances are your upper abs are still looking like their usual sexy selves at this stage. If this is the case, the adorable high-waisted skirts and dresses that are all over stores should be¬†your best friends¬†for nights out. The skirt flares at just the right place–right over your baby bump–and the fitted part showcases the most slender part of your waist. Hello,¬†optical illusion. ūüėČ

This dress from H & M has been my go-to for nights out lately!

This dress from H&M has been my go-to for nights out lately!

Who says you can't bear some midriff when you're 5 months along? This high-waisted skirt and crop top is of my fave prego going-out outfits. The skirt totally covers the 5-month bump. Plus, there's a bonus pic of Baby C's dad, my hubby Antonio. ;) Top: Asos, skirt: Forever 21.

Who says you can’t bare some midriff when you’re 5 months along? This high-waisted skirt and crop top is another of my fave prego going-out outfits. The skirt totally covers the 5-month bump. Plus, there’s a bonus pic of Baby C’s dad, my hubby Antonio. ūüėČ Top: Asos, Skirt: Forever 21.

Empire waists –¬†It’s wedding season, and if you’re looking for formalwear, the empire waist looks simply ravishing at month 5. These gowns are super hot right now–I went shopping for a dress for our good friends’ wedding in Macy’s Juniors prom dress department, and was startled by how many empire waist gowns there were! Here are 2 of my favorites.

This dress from Macy's is formalwear at its comfiest!

This dress from Macy’s is formalwear at its comfiest!

This hot pink empire-waist dress from Macy's felt great through hours of dancing at the wedding!

This hot pink empire-waist dress from Macy’s felt great through hours of dancing at the wedding!

Layers –¬†Crocheted summer sweaters are an amazing look for moms-to-be who are looking to even out their silhouettes. They impart a fun boho look and can be dressed up or down. I prefer layering with casual ripped cutoff shorts and tank tops, but you can experiment to find the best look for you!

Crocheted summer sweaters look ravishing over your bump. Sweater: Body Central, Cami: Charlotte Russe, Shorts: Old Navy

Crocheted summer sweaters look ravishing over your bump. Sweater: Body Central, Cami: Charlotte Russe, Shorts: Old Navy

Other mid-preg ladies out there, what trends do you enjoy wearing? Have you noticed any new¬†bump-flattering styles? I’d love to hear what ¬†you think!