How to travel internationally with kids - Part 1 Mindset

Monday, September 12

Since getting back from a 17 day trip in Europe with 3 kids five years old and younger, the main question I've been getting is HOW DO YOU TRAVEL SO FAR WITH SUCH SMALL KIDS? 

I've been thinking about this question a lot, and thought I'd do a little series on how to travel with kids. As I was reflecting on our trip, I realized that a huge part of traveling with kids is mindset, and specifically our expectations. 

Swedish Midsummer Party 2022

Monday, July 25

Hooray for traditions, and hosting our 3rd Swedish Midsummer Party. If you're new here, you can see the first two parties here and here

As you know, my dad is Swedish (we visit his family fairly often in Sweden & are always inspired by the landscape and style of dreamy Sweden!). So a few years ago, when I was thinking about the traditions I wanted to start with my own kids, it made so much sense to incorporate my Swedish heritage and throw a Midsummer party! 

A long time dream is coming true, and I'm so excited to share it with you!!

Thursday, June 23


{Photo by my dear friend Katie Drake}

Ok friends...I have an exciting secret to share with you about a dream that I have had in my heart for almost 10 years and that is finally going to come to fruition!!

Almost 10 years ago when we lived in Nepal, the Lord called me to switch careers from international non-profit work and go back to school to become a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. A very big part of why I wanted to step into this role was so that I could be used to encourage and offer care and support for expat and missionary women serving abroad.  

Avonlea's Ballerina Fairy Birthday Party

Wednesday, April 20

Avonlea turned five and to celebrate we hosted a Ballerina Fairy party! It was as magical and "all things pink" as you might imagine, haha! Avonlea, of course, picked the theme, and then I just ran with it using things we had at our house. The party was mostly family members, but Avie invited a few "fairy" friends as well. I asked all the girls to come in their own ballerina tutu's, but then found super cheap fairy wings, flower crowns, and wands on Amazon and gave them to each little girl upon arrival. Their joy and excitement was contagious! 

An evening in Lagos, Portugal

Friday, January 21

I had no idea what to expect of Lagos. Since we were staying in Salema and not Lagos, I did little research on it before we left. However, as Salema is a tiny town, we decided to spend the afternoon and evening in Lagos on our first night there! It did not disappoint! 

Best family friendly hike in the Algarve (near Lagos, Portugal)

Thursday, January 20

Before heading to Portugal, I did a quick search online to see the highlights of the Algarve...and BOY was this coastline the MAIN ATTRACTION! If you need to know anything about Southern Portugal's famous Algarve coast, it's that it's absolutely magnificent and breathtaking! Knowing that, we wanted to spend the majority of one of our days here exploring. 

I looked up a few hikes. Because we had Ollie, we knew we didn't want to do anything too strenuous or get caught on a long hike and not be able to turn back in time for his needs. On a whim, I noticed a hike on the cliffs that was close to Lagos, and relatively easy. While this hike is breathtaking and fun for everyone, it can definitely be labeled family friendly as all ages could walk along the paths! 

The hike started at Ponta da Piedade. We plugged that into our GPS in our rental car, and it took us right to the parking lot. Thankfully there was plenty of parking, and we got Ollie out and strapped into the Ergo 360 (a total must when traveling with a baby!). 

There is a trail that runs along the cliffs, and the nice thing is you can kind of choose how far you want to go. We spent a few hours meandering the trails and drinking in the incredible view. There were people from all over the world here, and it was fun to meet and chit chat! 

There is a massive staircase down one of the cliffs that absolutely worth walking down. You can see some beautiful arches and the the ocean from the bottom. Ollie got a little hungry down there so I gave him a quick nurse as nobody was around. Halfway through his nurse, a tourbus group of about 100 Japanese tourists descended down the stairs and were walking all around me taking pictures of the scenery. It was hilarious! 

Just as a sidetone for traveling with a baby, never be afraid to nurse anywhere! Breastfeeding a baby is a total natural thing to do, and if your baby is hungry, feed him! People from the world over are so kind and gracious:) So don't be scared to feed wherever you are! 

At the end of our hike, we found a cute little cafe near the parking lot that had a view of the cliffs and ocean. It was absolutely delicious. I ate the vegetable paella, Kevin got a ham and cheese sandwich and Ollie nursed! 

If you are close to Lagos, this is a must see trail!! Enjoy!

{random side note...usually we don't eat at the tacky places by the parking lots, ha! BUT...we honestly found in Portugal that the food is good EVERYWHERE (whether a tacky road side stand or a cliff view restaurant!) We were shocked at the level of cuisine in Portugal, it was amazing!} 

Where to stay in the Algarve- Salema, Portugal

Wednesday, January 12

Kevin and I had a lot of fun researching where to stay in Portugal, and when it came to figure out where to stay in the Algarve, we kept being pointed back to Salema. And, for good reason! 

Salema is a sleepy beach town, and if you're coming to the Algarve to relax, sunbathe, swim in the ocean, and eat delicious checks all those boxes. If you're looking for raging nightlife, you're definitely better off staying in a bigger city like Lagos or Albufeira. 

The best Airbnb in Portugal

Monday, January 10

If you're looking for the dreamiest, most authentic, and best Airbnb in Portugal, look no further! For those following along on IG, you would know that Kevin and I booked our trip to Portugal just days before we arrived. With a tip from Rick Steve's to stay in the quaint town of Salema in the Algarve (on the southern coast), I did a quick AirBnB search, and this one caught my eye. 

From the minute I saw it, I was sold! 

And I can vouch that it is only better in person:) 

Best Resort in the Algarve....Vilalara Thalassa

Saturday, January 8

Because our trip to Portugal was in honor of our 10 year wedding anniversary, Kevin and I thought it would be fun to splurge for 1 night of the trip on a really amazing resort in the Algarve. In our 10 years of marriage, we've been budget travelers through and it was rather exciting to think of living that upgraded life for a night, haha! 

It didn't take long for me to find the PERFECT place! Every time I googled best place to stay in the Algarve, Vilalara Thalassa Resort kept coming up. I took one look at the pictures, and was hooked! I'm a sucker for beautiful places (both the aesthetic of the resort...but also the natural surrounding beauty). This one checked both boxes.