A good, lightweight travel towel
As spring creeps up on us winter weary mamas I thought a fun look at our camping trip in Northern Washington state would inspire a bit of planning for outdoors fun.
One of my great rules in life is that whatever you're doing is only as fun as the people you're doing it with. So bring along other parents to share in the joy of letting kids sleep on the ground, play in the dirt and walk till their little legs can't go any further.
A good, lightweight travel towel
Breastfeeding while camping. You can easily breastfeed when you are out hiking and camping, just remember that you need lots of extra water. Pack a good assortment of high protein snacks. The best idea is to make some lactation energy balls with peanut butter, nutritional yeast, chia seeds, honey and wheat germ. These little power balls will energize you and make sure you have lots of milk while camping.
Northern California has wonderful places to enjoy. Whenever I'm there my son loves running through trees and being carried near flowing streams. Thanks to all the rainfall it's way more green and lovely.
Tell us your best spot for green trees and flowing water in the comments.
Panorama Point Campground
I love this area for its abundance of fun things to do with a toddler. If you aren't up for the dirt fest of camping you can always bring an RV to stay in while the family explores baker lake. There are lovely places to walk, the big baker lake to enjoy and lots of fun to be had the big group campfire pits with amazing views.
Walk: with baby you can go for easy stroller rides around the campground. Watch out for bugs though, my son got bitten right on his poor little eye. If your little one like dogs strolling around the campground can be a great way to count all the different dogs out camping.
As they get a little older you can baby-wear and hike. Once your little gummybear has gotten too big to comfortably babywear on a hike you can choose to go for shorter walks and discover all the plants, leafs and trees. Bringing your littles out into nature from an early age helps them naturally learn about their place in the great big world. Wonder is something that can never be taught too young.
Kayak: I love our little 2 person inflatable kayak that can go as easily on an RV as a plane ride. Last summer my son and I kayaked in the San Juan Islands and it was a great beginners way to introduce a little person to safety and all the fun of kayaking in ponds and lakes.
Swim: remember to bring your baby's life-vest so they can float with you in the water at baker lake.
Fire pits and stories: for the younger set ghost stories may be too scary but stories of natural wonder and history are always fun for little minds to sponge up.
Life-vest: is vital for a good time to be had around water. Little ones can run fast and fall in so come prepared and teach them to love their fun water vest.
Hats: As a certified glow-in-the/-dark pale girl hats are top of my list to keep from sunburns and heatstroke (and yes, I have gotten heatstroke below 70 degrees).
Bug spray and candles: there are a number of bugs, my son got eaten up. Pack two big candles for dinners outside so you wont' be eaten alive
I love fall in Bellingham, there is an endless stream of crisp-air filled outings to be made. The salmon run around Bellingham is such fun for a little toddler. My son said fishies for the first time while watching them and was ever so happy to sit, breastfeeding and watching the fish jump through the air.
It can be pretty chilly while watching fish splash so bring an extra layer and a warm blanket for covering small legs while in the stroller. One of my favorite ways to see the fish is to forward-face your little one in a baby carrier so they can safely look around while you explain things.
If you go during the afternoon you can bring warm snacks and hot apple cider to tide over small bellies between meal times.
Check online for fun and informative educational talks along the water's edge. Older kids can learn a lot more and you can sound smart when you recite back your newfound knowledge.
Be prepared ahead of time and look up some great facts so you and your little one can bond over conversations and fish.
What is anadromous? Salmon are and it means they're born in fresh water, hang out in the salty ocean as adults and head upstream to freshwater to spawn their babies.
There are about nine species of salmon that you can buy in stores.
Salmon can weigh up to 110 pounds!
You can tell the age of our tasty friends the salmon by counting the number of rings on its ears.
Visit Morro Bay for a relaxing couple of days. My son loves watching the birds as the tide pulls out and I love walking from the RV campground into town and back with the stroller. Stop for a milkshake as you wander around and just enjoy the area.
I love how different Morro Bay feels to the rest of SoCal and yet how close it all is. As you leave town don't forget to nibble on some doughnuts.
I love my hometown's many lovely areas. Santa Barbara is a pretty awesome spot for raising a little boy. He's spent his first years crawling, naked on the beaches and eating too many avocados.
The rose garden across the street from the Santa Barbara Mission is a lovely spot for photos and picnics with a toddler. My son is bit enamored with petals and likes to try and pluck all the roses so I do have to watch him like a hawk so that he can't get to them but he loves sniffing the scents.
We had a really lovely pelting of misty rain and got quite wet while playing in the roses. California is in a deep drought so it was nice to see some moisture. I always suggest you pack extra lotion for Santa Barbara because of how drying it can be on your skin.
Having a toddler means having the magic of newness in your life every day. A new color of flower, a raindrop in your hair or the awe of just being wild and free. These are the magic of life with a toddler.
Winter with a Toddler
As the winter really gets here my son and I are excited to see what fun things we can do in the snow or chilly rain. I wanted to share some of our December photos to help inspire you to get outside even when it's cold.
I know my son is wild whether I let him play outside or not but our days have a more focused energy when we both play outside and get fresh air. A big part of being a mama is not getting our little ones to behave a certain way but to focus their natural character and help them be happy day to day.
Bring a big scarf and warm gloves no matter the temperature this winter. They are always life savers for keeping little ones happy. Also, if you need to breastfeed while out in the cold a big, warm scarf will keep my breasts and tummy from freezing. I've done some good vlogs on cold weather breastfeeding on my Patreon as well.
Make sure you apply sunblock, I know my son and I have very fair skin and we can burn even on a cold day. Snow reflects a lot of light!
Toddler in the Berry Patch
Family is what matters in life and I love my big, crazy gang of a family. When uncle moose visited us we went berry picking. Boysenberry, Marion Berries, Blueberries and more means my freezer is full of fruit and my heart is filled with the awws.
Get everyone coated in sunblock before you leave for the berries or little excited gummybears might just run off without sunblock on.
Bring extra water; both for drinking and cleaning up sticky little fingers. Diaper wipes are a must or you will look like you've just killed a train load of bunnies.
Cabo San Lucas
Cabo San Lucas is a great stop with babies while cruising. Take a big shady stop under an umbrella and have fun relaxing. Always remember to bring a towel for you and the little after swimming and extra sunblock to reapply after sweating and swimming.
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