Four Essentials to Cross Country Travel


05 Nov Four Essentials to Cross Country Travel

Raising a Global Baby (We hope)

My husband DJ and I spent more than eight years exploring before we decided to have our first child. After we had Ezekiel, we didn’t want to stop exploring. We were determined to raise a child who would love to travel and want to see the world. So, we kept traveling.

Since Ezekiel was born in January, he’s seen New York City, Pittsburgh, Boston, Maine, New Hampshire, Virginia, five baseball stadiums, and we’re still going!

Every time we come back, I get asked how the Boy did. The answer is always the same, “He was awesome, he loved it.”

People often ask how we do it with an infant. Here are some of our philosophies on traveling with an infant.


I am a pretty neurotic planner. I make lists for everything. Traveling with an infant takes a lot of forecasting. Not only what you should bring, but where you put everything when you’re loading the car up. We plan for having to feed him when there are no rest stops for miles. We’ve developed this system where I climb in the back and the dog has to climb up front. It’s pretty impressive. Anticipate your needs. Anticipate the kid’s needs. Anticipate your stops for gas, bathroom breaks, feedings. It mentally prepares me for the trip we are about to take and if I can plan ahead, when an explosive diaper comes along the way, I know that I have to reach behind the driver’s seat to grab the diaper changing clutch and start setting up in the passenger seat, while my driver grabs the Boy. We’re like a baby pit crew.

Stay Awake

Before we take off, we always make a stop to top off on gas and grab snacks for the road. While we wait for gas, we also surf Audible for an audiobook. We buy snacks and drinks for every possible situation, water for hydration, coffee and tea for caffeine, and an energy drink or two for the wee hours of the morning.

When it was just the two of us, we really pushed ourselves to get places as quickly as possible. Now that we have Ezekiel, we are more responsible, we rest more often, we take naps at rest stops, because we don’t want to chance falling asleep at the wheel.

Find what works for you. We leave in the middle of the night to bypass any possible traffic. DJ drives through the night because he’s the night owl, and I drive in the morning because I am the early bird.

Sempre Gumby

Remember when I said I was pretty neurotic when it came to planning things? I like it when things go according to plan. But, sometimes, they don’t. So, sempre Gumby!! Stay flexible.

You have to decide which is more important for your trip: the time you arrive to your scheduled destination, or the experiences in getting there.


We were trying to make it back to Maryland from Virginia before rush hour, but we saw a civil war battlefield and stopped. There was also a park ranger there and he was about to start a tour of the grounds. We looked at each other and asked, “What do you want to do?” We chose to stay for a bit to hear the story of what it would’ve been like to see the Union Army come out of the woods and down the hill. (Then I had to drive, because DJ hates sitting in traffic.)

You have to be willing to abandon your lists and plans and time tables to get what you were really looking for — quality time with each other, sights, sounds and adventure.


DJ is always telling me to chill out. I am pretty high-strung. Remember what I said? Neurotic. He constantly reminds me that I should live in the moment. I should stop taking pictures and just experience the sight of God’s creation. I should stop Googling what happened at the historic site and just look around and take it in. Vacationing is about relaxing and recharging your heart, mind, and soul.

Enjoy it.

Embrace it.

Don’t rush through it.


What about you?  Have you decided to travel the country with your little one?  Do you have any tried and true pieces of advice to give?  COMMENT below and share, we’d love to hear!