Traveling: On the Road with Healthy Menu Options {and M&M link-up}

We just came back from a wonderful family road trip- the husband and I loaded up the 3 year old and 16 month old, and hit the road for the beautiful mountains of Colorado.

I’ve not ever been skiing, or to CO. My husband has been a few times. It was amazing, and did I mention beautiful? The mountains were breathtaking!

Rocky Mountains

We are so blessed to be able to travel for a little family vacation. And just because we are traveling doesn’t mean we go crazy with junk food. We try very hard to stick within a reasonable budget, and eat healthy snacks. {which exclude fast food!}

We see it as, the more money we save while on the road, the more we can enjoy spending on nice meals and fun for the kids, once we get where we’re going.

So what does our road trip food look like?

It looks like several pre made peanut butter sandwiches, 4-8 oranges, 3-4 apples, a container of clean grapes, a few bananas, and a bag of nuts or trail mix.

Then we pack a small cooler with Lexie’s rice milk and Mister’s coconut milk, along with lots of bottled water. In that cooler we usually add lunch meat, and anything else that needs to be kept cool or cold. The cooler goes in the very back of the van or suv with our luggage.

When we stop for gas we may grab a few snacks, like more nuts or pretzels.

This trip, we traveled for about 8 hours. Some people think we are crazy to travel for that long with two young children. Maybe we are! One of our friends said that we should fly instead and then get a quote from this relocation company. She said they would pick up our suv and take it to and from Colorado so that we could still drive it whilst we were away. This was tempting, but flying is more expensive and makes it harder to control what you are eating. And hey, the drive is part of the trip for us. We actually managed to rent a car seat for the kids, so that made things easier for us. We spent a lot of time in the car on this vacation so it was important that the kids were safe and comfortable whilst on the road.

At lunch time on our journey, we stopped at a park where I made us sandwiches with spinach, and we had salads with homemade dressing. The kids were able to run around and enjoy themselves, and then we were back on the road in less than an hour.

I also like to pack freezer food for meals once we get to our hotel. We stayed in a condo that had a small kitchen. I grabbed a bag of frozen mexican chicken soup, and some frozen sloppy joes. This way we can eat one or two nice meals out for dinner, and still have healthy, delicious meals in our condo a few nights to save on cash. We are a family that eats out maybe 3 times a month; we don’t really enjoy eating our every single meal while on vacation.

And that is it! It is so easy to pack a small cooler (you will be amazed what you can fit inside!) and a lunch bag with fruits and pre made sandwiches for easy, on the road meals.

Going on vacation doesn’t have to wreck havoc in your wallet, or your health!

Be encouraged, friends! What foods do you pack for road trips?

January 20th ~

The Y, healthy foods, and pregnancy update

Today was my first day back at the Y since I was about 9 months p,regnant with lexie! It was great to be back. I went to Yoga, and oh how I have missed it! I feel so much better afterward. Lexie did great in the kids room, she was a bit anxious at first, but there was no crying when I walked away. They said she played the entire time. She also schooled the ladies on the difference between red and orange bowling pins. I wasn’t aware she knew the difference between red and orange … Evidentally she does. She definitely knows blue!

After yoga we went to walmart, the first thing she did was point out the blue on the glass door, then immediately started asking for “boobies,” so off to the produce we went! She ate blue berries the whole time and I got a few things we needed. We were in and out in 35 minutes- someone give me an Amen! That is record timing! But I spent $120, somehow. Groceries are so dang expensive, healthy ones are anyway. I left with 4 pints of blueberries, 6 4packs of organic Greek blueberry yogurt, strawberries, apples, cutie oranges, milk, cream cheese, canned peas, granola thins, bread, kashi pita crisps and hummus. Mmm I love hummus, my mother in law made this great recipe, and I really need to get it from her- it’s red pepper hummus, two kinds of olives, tomatoes and cucumbers. Mmmm sooo good! And healthy! Speaking of healthy, for dinner last night, my daughter ate half a grilled burger patty, and an entire can of green beans. I cooked them with a bullion cube and some onion flakes- she literally ate the whole can. She just kept signing for more! I can’t complain .. That’s for sure!

What’s your family’s favorite healthy, go to snack?

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I have had a lot of friends and family asking how I feel, etc during my pregnancy. Im only 6wk3d today. I get headaches from time to time, get super sleepy during the day, and want lots of red meat. I’m having a lot of cramping, just mild cramps, which is common but I don’t remember having this much last time. Also, yesterday I woke up with my back killing me. I don’t know if it’s the progesterone making all the soft tissue relax, so my muscles are more tender ? Or whats going on. But it hurts on either side of my spine. I’m learning already poor lexie will have to do more walking than she already does. The cat lays on my tummy though. So she is like a built in heating pad, that’s very nice! (since you’re not supposed to use heating pads during pregnancy). Overall I feel good, not too many symptoms. Which makes me worry a bit. I hate waiting for the first dr visit! It’s so hard .. Just not knowing if everything is going ok in there, that the baby is still growing, etc. It’s so common for women to miscarry and not know it until the first ultrasound, at 12 weeks. But if that’s all you think about you’ll go crazy- so I try not to. Just keep us in your prayers that everything is good! I did go back and read during my last preg the exhaustion kicked in around 7 weeks and the heartburn at 11. So I still have that to look forward to.

16 months old

rSo last week while my mom was here, lexie and i were playing with her peeka blocks on the floor. I stacked one and said “one” then she did the next three and counted “two, three, four!” giving each block it’s own number! I know right?! Mom and I practically squealed we were so excited, that would be the teacher comingout in both of us. Then, when my mom is here, she always pulls up www.starfall.com and let’s lexie play with the abcs game. (here’s the back story- lexie has a little toy barn w letter you push through the top and she loves them! I have always told her what each letter was, and she would repeat after me. So she has had early exposure to literacy in that way. It’s not like we are forcing education down a baby’s throat- it’s all through play and conversation or reading, which she loves.). So anyway, she and mom play on that website, and lexie now says “a, /a/.” the /a/ means she is sounding out the a! So it’s “a, /a/,” and then sometimes she says “apple” afterward! The sequence on the game is the exact same; it amazes me that she knows this. And if you ask her what B SAYS, SHE WILL RESPOND /b/. Just this morning she picked the B from the bag of foam letters, and said “B, /b/.” I swear. It’s amazing what children will do if you just give them the tools. One day she will understand what all of it really means.

And, she has started singing her abcs. It’s pretty funny, because at any time during the day you could record about 15 minutes in our house, and one of us will be singing and/or dancing. Lexie sings all day. She sings “clean up clean up” when she outs her toys away, when I wipe her face, or when she picks her blocks up off the floor and outs them on her table. She sings silly songs with mama, I say the words and she just mumbles along. And she now sings her Abcs. Haha. It goes something like this, “A, um, oo, ah, b, hmm, ooo, da, b, ah, we, nam, num, I.” Lol. Now sing that to the tune of the abcs. It’s precious and I’m going to try to record her doing it, but I’m sure she will stop once I get the camera out. The last week or two she has started saying whole phrases and a few complete sentences. They have included “Bye Daddy,” “silly mommy!” and “Silly daddy!” I can’t remember what her sentences were, it’s been a while. =/


Also, the other day I got her a swing! We’ve been wanting to get one for some time, but just never got around to it. A lady posted one on free cycle, and I got it! It’s a blue dolphin? I dunno what’s up with that, but it’s a fisher price and in good condition. Lexie loves it! She won’t be in it much longer, because she is the size of a two year old … But it will do until we get her a swing set this summer I hope. Oh yes- for her birthday this year jtom is going to build her a swing set! We may buy one like these Colorado swing sets for sale, if things just get too busy, but i know he wants to build it, then we will add all the swings and slide. She loves the playground and slide at the park, so I know she will love having one of her own. I can’t wait!


And a funny story- we were in the devils den walmart Wednesday. You know I’m methodical in everything I do, grocery shopping is one of them. I make my shopping list according to the route I take in the store, depending on the store. I also take my AMEX Blue Cash Preferred card to make sure that I earn rewards on my purchases. If I forget my card, the day is ruined! At walmart, my route looks like this: pharmacy for toothpaste, dog food, etc. To the back for diapers if her school is low. Then to the front for produce, around to the meats, back to the cheese, milk, and eggs. Then I shop the inside aisles and finish in the frozen section if we need veggies for baby. Well, on this day we started in produce because I didn’t need anything from the pharmacy. The minute I put the blue berries in the cart, SOMEONE starts yelling “boobies! Boobies!” while kicking her legs. “boobies” is lexie talk for blue berries (mom, she has that beginning sound down!). So I tear the tape off the container, and start shoving boobies blue berries into her mouth and my pockets. I filled my pockets up so I could just feed them to her while we shopped. She ate all but about 10 blue berries in the pint. But I left there with a happy toddler! Whew. She’s a mess.

“bye, bye”-wanting Payne to go read

My dad came this weekend, and we had such a great time! He got in sat morning; we visited outside while jtom worked on the bench for our table. He brought Guss who played like he was puppy again, not a 10 yr old dog. Payne pulled lexie around the yard in the wagon, and they had a big time! Saturday afternoon, while lexie napped and I rested, the boys went to the woods and shot guns. Ooh, those are days I miss! Next time lexie will stay w someone while I get to go shoot too! Haha. But anyways, so they had a big time in the woods and then Sunday we just played and visited until dad left that afternoon. Lexie was constantly asking her Payne to go “bye” with her. She asked him to “eee” which is read to her, and of course teased him all day wi her silliness. When she woke up from her nap, she asked for “Mayne. Mayne”. (Payne Payne). It was pretty cute. She loves her Payne for sure!



Her outfit of choice-wouldn’t take off the boots or hat!

Payne and Lexie reading “Nose”








I wrote the above about a week ago. Today is Monday the 9th. I wanted to mention, that speaking of “boobies” Lexie’s Papa and SueSue went to the Galapagos Islands last week. They had a fantastic time and said that this Guide to luxury in Galapagos is essential for anyone who wants to visit the beautiful island. It’s definitely on my bucket list! They brought her home a (toy) Blue Footed Boobie. lol It’s a bird only found in the Galapagos, you should Google it. =) Now Lexie knows her elbows, knees and back (sometimes). She also loves to read her Bible-it is currently her favorite book. I am okay with that! haha We have been battling thrush for a few weeks-t comes and goes. Since it replicates itself in a different strand every few days, it makes it hard to kill it off. UH-not fun! But she is doing well with it.


She LOVES the coconut oil I’m using to help treat it. Plus it is good for her, even when she’s not sick. I plan on writing a post about the benefits of coconut oil and its many many uses! I am eating a few tbsp a day of it-it is the best fats you can ingest, and helps with nails, skin, hair. I’m even using it as a moisturizer-me, pregnant Meghan with oily pregnancy skin and it’s AMAZING! Leaves my skin feeling like silk, and not even oily by the end of the day! I won’t go on here, but you should Google it, then go to your local foods store and buy a jar of organic, virgin pressed coconut oil! Best ten dollars I ever spent-and I plan on getting more!

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