Favorites: Mama’s Go Tos!

I have gone over the several things that are favorites of kids with sports, art, games, and puzzles. Eventually I will talk about some of our favorite apps, but right now I thought it would be good to turn the focus to the Mamas. I am packing for our big trip and starting to pull out things that we need and making sure I have some of the things I love will make the trip more comfortable.

Mama’s Favorite Bevvies!


Starting with coffee! I have a Bialetti Espresso maker that I bring along. They recommend the Illy Moka Ground Coffee, and it is delicious! This gets my morning started the right way! I found it for the best price through Amazon, but I have seen it at local gourmet grocery stores as well.


Speaking of hot drinks, I drink a lot of tea throughout the day. I make sure to pack my favorites, and these are the three I bring along. The Ginger Aid tea keeps tummy aches away, Easy Now gives me a nice clear mind and I am able to drink small worries away, and Bedtime tea relaxes me for the best night sleep. On a kid note: I also get the Lad a special kids tea from Traditional Medicinals called Nighty Night. He loves it and I think it really helps him sleep better too. He also says it keeps his nightmares away.

Mama’s Favorite Snack


Mama needs some snacks too. I have fallen in love with (read: become hopelessly addicted to) Dang Roasted Coconut Chips in the Caramel Sea Salt flavor. I find these at my grocery store, but I see they are also available on Amazon or through the Dang’s website. All I can say about these, is they are appropriately named, because they are dang good! I also like to mix them in with my favorite other snack, which is a bag full of craisins and almonds (get the instructions here). The coconut adds just a little something extra that is quite delicious!


Mama’s Favorite Vessels



One of my favorite mugs is actually a jar with a special lid by Cuppow! I can either do a small jar or a large jar, using the same lid. The drinks stay really hot (sometimes too hot) and it basically turns a jar into a sippy cup for kids and adults alike, and they make them in different colors now too.

When things get too hot to handle I like to wrap a wash rag around the jar and hold it in place with a rubber band. This not only makes it easier to hold, but it insulates the jar too!20140617-131951-47991660.jpg

Another item this company is currently making is a bento style insert, called the “Bnto“. It is made from the same material as the lid, and converts jars into 2 section lunch holders. I actually sent a smaller jar filled with pretzels or carrots in the bottom, and put some delicious hummus in the Bnto insert as a snack for my son at school. It works really well, is easy to clean and he can see what he is eating, which adds to the joy!



Water bottles get a lot of use around here. We don’t buy bottled water out in our parts because our tap water is just as amazing as the bottled stuff. Having a good water bottle makes a big difference. Life Factory makes some great glass water bottles with silicone sleeves. My favorite version is the one with a straw, but I also have a flip top version. I like the straw because it is easier to drink if I am driving. I am less likely to spill, and because of that, I also got a smaller version for the lad. I like the glass for the warmer climates due to leaching from the plastic when things start getting hot (all parts on Life Factory bottles are BPA-free).


I like to have a glass of wine on occasion, and another favorite thing to bring is wine in a box. I am not talking about the kind we grew up with our parents drinking (ah, Franzia!), but many bands are going to this packaging method. I don’t know how this one called Bandit tastes yet, but I like to take wines along in this sort of packaging for a couple of reasons. 1) I don’t need to use a cork pull. This isn’t a big deal until you forget it at home…been there, done that! 2) If I am traveling with my kid and I am the only one having a glass, the lid screws on tight so I don’t have a mess to clean up later as it travels along with us in the cooler. 3) I can squeeze the air out of the box before putting it back in the cooler, keeping the wine fresher longer. It really is handy!

Mama’s favorite Moisturizer


My skin is not only sensitive, but I tend to dry out in any climate. Alba Botanical Very Emollient body lotion is my favorite lotion for bodies and hands. It isn’t greasy, absorbs quickly, and I don’t get all itchy from using it. I keep a bottle in my car, next to the bed, in the bathroom…pretty much anywhere I can. This one is unscented and just works really well for me. It is often on sale too, so the price is right. The other great thing is, it comes in a jumbo size, which has an even better price, and I use that to refill my smaller bottles! Works like a charm!


Mama’s Favorite Fashion!


My great-grandmother used to wear these amazing full length dresses when they went out into the woods. I am not that sophisticated. I have spent most of my time in capris and shorts – until recently! I discovered “Skirts With Benefits“! That is what Title Nine calls their skirts with a pair of shorts sewn into them. Title Nine has a huge selection of them and that is where my favorite ones come from. They are super comfortable, I can run and climb and bike without flashing my “unmentionables”, they look super cute with my Keen Mary Janes or my walking/running shoes, and they are much cooler to wear on hot days than capris and shorts. They also are really easy to pack, don’t wrinkle and you can really dress them up or down.

Mama’s Favorite Wrap Ups



Folks in our parts will tell you that Pendleton Blankets are some of the finest items in the world. They are often given as wedding gifts or at baby showers. These wool blankets are heritage items, and I got my first one, called “Spirit Quest”, for my high school graduation. It is something I take with me, that makes me happy and keeps me warm. Having a wonderful blanket can make all of the difference, especially on cold nights. And when they are as gorgeous as these, it also adds to the style of your home (or home away from home)!

Mamas Favorite Books


I like to have some good books along (click here to see more of our favorite books). If we are staying several days in a location I like to have travel books for the places we are going. Having a rough idea of what is going on or if we are struggling with trying to find things to do can easily be solved with a quick look in the book for ideas.

I can’t just read travel books, so I bring along fun books too! I have recently started reading the Flavia de Luce books by Alan Bradley. This series has turned me into a serial reader, something I haven’t been since “The Girl with the Dragon Tatoo” series. This series is totally different than that, but has me captivated. The stories are about an 11 year old girl named Flavia, who has a love of chemistry, a very eccentric family, and murders that keep happening in her small 1950s English village. They are really fun reads, Flavia is hilarious, and the stories keep your attention. I also love Carl Hiassen’s books, so I like to bring them along as well. Bringing books and magazines that you enjoy make for happy mamas!

A few other Mama’s favorites that I have already reviewed include:

Bike Friday

Bucky Eyemask

Beacon “Phoenix” Speaker

Thermacell Portable Cordless Mosquito Repellant Device

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