5 NO ORDINARY ways to make traveling with an infant less stressful

Traveling can seem overwhelming, but traveling with a baby can seem impossible especially when you want to create the safest environment for your little one.

 (Photo Credit: Florida Department Children and Families and PreventNeedlessDeaths.com campaign )

In the Tampa Bay area, nearly 200 children have died from drowning, unsafe sleep and abusive head trauma in the last five years – causes that could have been prevented, and are also a concern while traveling.

Before you hit the road with your infant, consider these five tips to make traveling with your baby safer and less stressful:

  1. Have a crib or Pack ‘n Play prepared

Consider where you’ll be staying and make arrangements to have a crib in the room or bring a Pack ‘n Play. After you arrive, use a tight-fitting sheet to cover the crib mattress or Pack ‘n Play pad.

Infants should never be placed on an adult bed, couch or blow-up mattress, which can increase the chances of suffocation.

 (Photo Credit: Florida Department Children and Families and PreventNeedlessDeaths.com campaign )

  1. Make sure your family knows the safest way for your infant to sleep

Educate family members on the ABCs of safe sleep. The safest way for infants to sleep is Alone on their Backs in a Crib (or Pack ‘n Play). This provides the safest sleep environment for your infant since most babies are still developing neck muscle control and are at an increased risk of suffocation.

 (Photo Credit: Florida Department Children and Families and PreventNeedlessDeaths.com campaign )

  1. Help caregivers deal with stress in a healthy way

Relatives, family friends or babysitters might help watch your infant while you’re traveling. Crying is normal and babies do it often, but this can be stressful for caregivers. Shaking an infant – even once – can be fatal, and in most cases, the individual does not mean to harm the child but lacks the knowledge or skills to cope with a stressful situation.

Take a moment to talk with your child’s caretaker about how they deal with stress. Understand how your child’s caregiver would cope with stress and look for signs that they may not be prepared, such as if they are easily angered or seem inattentive.

  1. Keep drowning hazards out of reach

Bathtubs, dog bowls and containers that hold an inch or more of water can be dangerous to your child, because children can drown in as little as 20 seconds and often silently. Be aware of your child’s surroundings, remove any dangerous items and talk to your family and friends about keeping doors locked when visiting their house, especially doors that lead to a pool or water area.

 (Photo Credit: Florida Department Children and Families and PreventNeedlessDeaths.com campaign )

  1. Designate a “water watcher”

Lack of adult supervision in and around the water leads to drowning, which is the No. 1 cause of preventable death in children ages 1 to 4. Designate a “water watcher” who will keep their eyes on children at all times and avoid distractions like texting.

Be sure to share this information with family members, babysitters and other caregivers, and keep it in mind while traveling. For more information about how to prevent the top three causes of preventable child deaths in Tampa Bay, visit PreventNeedessDeaths.com.

(The review is written by the Florida Department Children and Families and PreventNeedlessDeaths.com campaign and shared on my blog for awareness.)

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Not So Ordinary: Unusual And Unique Wedding Themes (Guest Blog)

I love when my readers reach out with an interest to write for No Ordinary Liz. I enjoy seeing how creative they get with their posts. This month, I have the pleasure of hosting Aimee Lyons, and her blog, DIYDarlin.  See what she suggests as adding unusual twists to your wedding themes!

Photo via Pixabay by NGDPhotoworks

These days, traditional weddings aren’t necessarily the norm for brides and grooms-to-be, especially younger ones. More and more people are finding that they want the option to make their wedding day as unique as their relationship, and the ideas are nearly limitless.

If you’re thinking about having an unusual wedding theme, push away those doubts. Don’t think about what your friends and family will think; it’s not their big day! Get creative and make a list of all the things you and your partner enjoy; it might be a day centered around your pets, or a holiday theme. Once you have a date set, think about the best ways to celebrate the things you love and what you’ll need to make it happen.

Here are some of the best, most unique ideas for wedding themes.

A literal fairytale wedding
If you’re a fan of literature, think about creating a fairytale theme for your wedding. Alice In Wonderland is a particularly festive idea; you can set up each table to look like a different area in the story, such as the Mad Hatter’s tea party, the rose garden, and the house that Alice literally grows out of. Create quirky and fun centerpieces full of wildflowers with googly eyes stuck on to imitate the animated creatures from the movie.

A holiday event
If you and your partner share a favorite holiday, consider making it the theme of your wedding day. Halloween weddings are particularly fun, as you can have a candy buffet instead of a traditional layout, or have everyone dress in costume and “trick or treat” at different candy stations set up around the reception area.

Starry-eyed nuptials
If you live in an area where the weather is nice year-round, consider having a wedding under the stars. Find a lovely outdoor venue and set the nuptials late, so that everyone can enjoy the starlight overhead. You can keep the decorations as simple as you want; let the night sky dictate your decor.

Get nerdy
If you and your loved one have a particular passion about something geeky, make it the center of your day! Video games, horror movies, a favorite book or television show…these all make a great basis for your wedding theme. Choose what you love the most and run with it.

Vintage travel
If you and your loved one are planning a romantic destination honeymoon, consider focusing your wedding day on the theme of travel. You can find some vintage, well-loved suitcases at a thrift shop that can serve as the centerpieces for your tables, or just to use as decor around the reception. Old globes, vintage postcards so the guests can write advice or just a wish they have for the happy couple, and worn maps will round out this adorable theme.

Have a destination wedding
Many couples choose to have a destination wedding in a beautiful location, such as on a beach or at the top of a cliff near the ocean. If it’s in the budget, consider having a simple ceremony with a gorgeous backdrop and let nature do most of the work.

It’s important to remember, however, that destination weddings take a lot of planning. Not only will you need to make sure the actual wedding ceremony and reception are taken care of, you’ll need to think about making sure everything back home is safe and secure. Talk to your neighbors about your trip and let them know how long you’ll be gone; set up motion-sensor lights around the perimeter of your home and consider investing in a surveillance system that will transmit a live feed to your smartphone or device. That way, you can keep an eye on things from wherever you are.

Aimee fancies herself a DIY goddess. She loves crafting, refurbishing furniture, remodeling rooms, and landscaping. She runs DIYDarlin, which provides DIY project resources and tutorials.

If you’re interested in being a guest blogger on No Ordinary Liz, feel free to contact me with your creative ideas!!

No Ordinary Bucket List

We all love an adventure. I know I certainly do. I can’t get enough of it.

So I just returned from my second leg of summer travels. With the celebration of America’s birthday behind me and celebrating the first few days of summer in the Great Smokies, it got me thinking. I want to do more! So I’ve decided to share with you what’s on my bucket list. It’s a big one! Continue reading “No Ordinary Bucket List”

A Chance Of A Lifetime…To INSPIRE and Be INSPIRED

HAVE you ever had an opportunity to cross your path that you simply couldn’t pass up or you second guessed yourself about submitting an application because you thought you would never have a chance at being selected  as a participant?   Well I have and the ODDS were forever in my favor!  I was selected through thousands of applicants to attend Project Belize in July 2013 through my awesome Firm, www.pwc.com.   Of course, I had that one mentor/co-worker that helped push me along the way to encourage me that this would be a perfect opportunity for me.  I did doubt myself that this wasn’t for me, or I wouldn’t know what to do once I got over there.  But, all I could think about in the end was the fact that I was going to travel across the world to make a difference in a child’s life, and I did just that. Continue reading “A Chance Of A Lifetime…To INSPIRE and Be INSPIRED”