Why Charlie Gard’s Case is a Cautionary Tale

Charlie and his parents. Photo credit Press Association.

The case of Charlie Gard is not a complex bioethics case study.  Besides the fact that he is a human being, not a case study, it is an egregious example of government overreach.  I would even consider the possibility that there is a coverup involved.  Intelligent people can disagree on when it’s appropriate to pull the plug on a seriously ill person who isn’t able to vocalize their wishes.  I personally would argue, heatedly, that care isn’t futile if all treatment options haven’t been exhausted, and in this case they haven’t.  However, to me, the fact that bioethics experts disagree on this point is disheartening, but it’s not the primary issue here.  The primary issue is that the state is allowed to determine that an innocent child must die, and his parents’ wishes are irrelevant.  And this isn’t in some third world dictatorship.  It’s Britain.  An advanced Western society that claims to support human rights worldwide. Continue reading “Why Charlie Gard’s Case is a Cautionary Tale”

Truth: Outdoor Time Sometimes Stresses Me Out

boy riding bike
Outdoor time is so important… but sometimes it can feel tedious when our kids are very young.

I know, right? Me? The mom who blogs about the importance of taking your kids outside? Yep.  My kids are young (3 years old and baby), and I know that it won’t always be like this.  In a couple years I’ll open the door and say “go play,” and they’ll be running around in the neighborhood until dinner time.  But for now, pretty much all outdoor time requires hands on parenting and supervision.  The preschooler wants someone to play with, but the baby just wants to eat the grass.  It’s hot, and I can’t draw another stick figure on the sidewalk.  Sometimes playing inside is tempting because it’s… well… easier.  There I said it.  But yet I know outdoor time is important, I love the outdoors myself, and I don’t want to discourage their desire to be outside.  So what to do?  Read on. Continue reading “Truth: Outdoor Time Sometimes Stresses Me Out”

What Happened to the Zika Virus? And Can I Take My Baby to Latin America?

Mosquito
Zika virus is spread by two types of mosquitos.

Last year, it seemed like the Zika virus was in the news daily.  At least it seemed that way to me, as I was pregnant and thus at risk for having a baby with birth defects if I contracted it.  Luckily, the virus did not hit the United States the way some models predicted it might.  And while I don’t want to belittle the experience of those who did contract it, most US mamas and babies survived the scare without incident save for a few areas of Florida and Texas.  But since then, we haven’t heard much about Zika.  Is the epidemic over?  Should pregnant women still avoid travel to Zika areas? What about young children?  In this article I will bring you up to speed on the latest regarding this somewhat unusual epidemic. Continue reading “What Happened to the Zika Virus? And Can I Take My Baby to Latin America?”

Must-Have Travel Gear for Adventure Mamas

Author and son
Sporting my adventure bag and all-purpose sneakers in Mexico City!

Alright mamas, last time we talked about serious things like fires and intruders, so today let’s have some fun!  As moms we spend a lot of time figuring out how to properly dress the kids for our adventures and travels, and securing the right kid gear to make things easier.  That’s great of course, but let’s not forget about Mom! Having a few really versatile pieces can make packing up your own stuff so much easier.  It’ll also allow you to go about your activities without worrying if you have the right shoes for an impromptu hike or a cute enough shirt to hit that ever-so-slightly-more-upscale restaurant for dinner (not that anyone cares when you show at 5pm with small kids in tow, but moving on!).  Read on for my favorite must-have travel gear for adventure mamas!  Continue reading “Must-Have Travel Gear for Adventure Mamas”

Do You Know What You’d Do? 4 Emergency Scenarios Parents Need To Be Prepared For

computer and notebook
Preparing beforehand can be the key to surviving one of these emergencies!

Please know this post is not intended to scare anyone.  I strongly believe that discussing emergency scenarios such as these is important because in many cases, having a plan can save your life and the lives of your family members.  These scenarios are rare and statistically very unlikely to happen to you, so please don’t lose sleep.  But do think about it and talk about it.  It is my hope that you’ll actually feel more comfortable, knowing you’ve taken steps to reduce your risk.  With that in mind, in this post we’ll look at four dangerous and scary emergency scenarios that families might encounter, and how to mentally prepare ahead of time to give you and your family the best chance for survival.   Continue reading “Do You Know What You’d Do? 4 Emergency Scenarios Parents Need To Be Prepared For”

5 Super Simple Steps To Cut Toxins From Your Home

2 girls in pajamas
Safer jammies are a great way to reduce toxin exposure! Read on for details.

Every day we see another article telling us that such-and-such substance causes cancer.  It can be overwhelming!  It’s often hard to know what’s a true threat, and implementing recommendations like “don’t ever touch any plastic again” can be impractical and unrealistic, not to mention expensive.  In this post I’ll walk you through five simple and affordable (several are free!) ways to reduce toxin exposure for your entire family, making your house healthier and safer.

Continue reading “5 Super Simple Steps To Cut Toxins From Your Home”

My Crossfit Pregnancy: Workout Modifications

Every pregnant mama is different!

What many don’t realize about Crossfit is that it is possible to modify any workout!  I learned this first hand when I continued to Crossfit while pregnant with my daughter.  This post is pretty technical and specific to Crossfit, so it won’t interest everyone, but I wanted to follow up my previous post on why Crossfit during pregnancy was right for me, with some more details on my workout modifications.  It’s hard to find authoritative information on what’s safe and what’s not.  I can’t claim to have an expert opinion, but I want to share my experience.  In this post I’ll break down what I did, and what I modified or eliminated, in each trimester of my pregnancy.   Crossfit mamas, read on! Continue reading “My Crossfit Pregnancy: Workout Modifications”

Traveling With Kids: Choosing the Best Stroller for Your Trip

Little boy pushing stroller
Bonus win — if your older child will push the younger one!

You planned an awesome trip and it’s time to pack!  You’re cruising along collecting everyone’s stuff when you hit the age old traveling-with-kids question — “do we bring a stroller?” If you have more than one stroller,  the next question is likely “which one?”  The answer of course, depends on where you’re going and what you’re doing.  How much space you have and whether you need the storage bin.  It’s not one size fits all.  Our handy stroller decision chart can help you determine the best stroller for your trip, quickly and easily every time! Continue reading “Traveling With Kids: Choosing the Best Stroller for Your Trip”

All The More Epic: On Adventure and Kids

Author and husband on top of rock ledge
We hiked to the top of this rock arch in the Jordanian desert on one of our first dates!

Tonight, on the eve of our first adventure of the summer, I sit here reflecting on what it means to have “adventures”.  And how that has changed since having kids.  Many, dare I say most, assume that adventures have to stop when kids enter the picture, at least for a while.  I used to think that, and initially I mourned the loss of a part of myself.  But now, with my oldest just turned three and a baby entering her first summer, I believe kids actually provide more opportunities for adventure.  Intrigued? Read on!  Continue reading “All The More Epic: On Adventure and Kids”

“Best Of”: Awesome Hacks for Stress-Free Travel With Kids

Bear in suitcaseSummer is almost here, and that means if you’re planning a summer trip, it’s time to get organized.  I personally love the excitement and anticipation of researching and planning a trip!  But if you travel with kids, especially young kids, there are also many stressors involved.  From car seats to hotel arrangements, to keeping everyone semi-occupied and happy on the plane and in the car, the details can sometimes get overwhelming.  Googling “travel with kids” can bring you some great ideas, but going through all the lists and figuring out what will help and what’s more work than it’s worth is, well, more work.  We can help!  Below is our “best of” list, bringing you gear, ideas, and one awesome travel hack that will, hopefully, make this summer’s trip less stressful! Continue reading ““Best Of”: Awesome Hacks for Stress-Free Travel With Kids”