Took My Talents to South Beach

Greetings from Miami BeachI’m baaack.  So this time my temporary hiatus wasn’t due to sleep deprivation or the flu.  I actually have a legitimate reason for being MIA, which was, well, MIA.  Yep, I was partying in the city where the heat is on.  From Thursday to Sunday I took my first getaway in a long time for my good friend AS’s bachelorette party in Miami.  It was a blast.  Sat on the beach in almost  90 degree weather (I have a sunburnt, and now peeling, scalp to prove it), had some really good meals (fried chicken with waffles and watermelon platter, anyone?! And in Miami no less!), and had lots of much needed, insanely fun UMD girl time.  I also have a few neat things to share post-trip. And for those of you who do not get the title of this post, perhaps this ridiculous clip of Lebron’s infamous “Decision 2010” will jog your memory.

1. On our first night in Miami, the awesome bride-to-be presented each of us with one of these neat little bags pictured below.  I’ve never heard of one of these but I was instantly obsessed.  These terry cloth clutch-style bags have a plastic lining so you can travel home with – yep you guessed it – your wet bikini, and it won’t soak all your other packed items.  It could also double as a small beach tote, or a dry place to store your $ & cell phone inside your beach tote. So clever.  And so cute too.  Love the gold anchor on the zipper and the bright colors.  I even got really lucky and scored a navy one.  And AS also filled these up with mini sunscreen, aloe, and Advil packets.  The best (and only!) bachelorette goody bag I’ve ever gotten, and I love it.  Nice work, AS!

Wet Bikini Bag

2. Warning to my male readers and squeamish female readers – major TMI ahead!  Here goes.  As some of you know, I am still breastfeeding and was having some anxiety about traveling away from A for 3 days and how that would work out.  Well, it totally worked out, and I attribute my success to crazy amount of planning that I did beforehand.  Literally when she was 2 months old and we booked the trip I would scour the internet during her 3am feeds for tips on pumping and traveling.  Here is the system I came up with, and I am sharing this only because when I was looking, I wished someone had laid it out nice and simply for me.  So hopefully this will help someone out there, and provide them with the confidence to pump and travel and enjoy themselves!

Here is what I brought with me on the trip: my electronic pump (I use the Medela Freestyle and love it) and parts, my manual hand pump (I needed this on the plane, and as backup in case something happened with the electronic pump), 3 bottles (for use with the pump – not for storage), 20+ breast milk storage bags (this is what I used to actually store the milk that I was bringing home), several large Ziploc bags, cleaning wipes for the pump and parts, and my Fridge-To-Go that I purchased a few weeks before.  I needed to pump on the trip to maintain milk supply, and whatever wasn’t boozy (this was a bachelorette, remember!) I planned to bring home.  This stuff is like liquid gold – I wasn’t feeding it to the Miami sewers unless I had to!  To travel home with the milk, the Fridge-To-Go seemed to be the best option since it didn’t require gel ice packs or bags of ice, neither of which are allowed through TSA security checkpoints.  The Fridge-To-Go is made of hard ice packs so you store it in your fridge or freezer and it keeps itself and it’s contents for about 8 hours after you take it out.  Breast milk was recently added to the list of approved “medical liquids” that you can carry on with you in more than 3oz containers when flying.  I also brought along a copy of the TSA regulations just in case I was questioned at the airport.  When it was time to leave Miami I put groups of breast milk storage bags into the larger Ziploc bags, and double-bagged this just in case any of them spilled or burst from the air pressure.  I put these in my cold Fridge-To-Go and was on my way.  Traveling home went super smoothly – security was OK with my “medical liquids”, the bags didn’t pop in the air, and the milk was still cold when I got home and could put it in my fridge  Success!  It wasn’t nearly as difficult or stressful as I thought it would be, which was a great lesson learned.Medela Freestyle

3. We all learned this awesome trick on Saturday night: how to curl your hair with a flat iron.  It’s seriously fascinating.  KH found the video and MKY played hairdresser.  I’m still baffled as to how this works – it is completely counterintuitive.  But it really works – KH had an adorable mop of dark curls in about 5 minutes.  And they held up really well.  It’s especially awesome since it means you really don’t have to travel with both items – just bring a small flat iron from now on when you travel and call it a day.  Space saved in your suitcase without compromising your ‘do.  Super neat.

Flat Iron

4. Lastly, I learned that bright colored jeans are in style.  Everyone looked fab in their orange, peach, and mint green jeans over the weekend.  I’m contemplating a pair, but not sure these linebacker quads are cut out for color.  We’ll see.

The weekend was so much fun and I’m sad that it’s come and gone.  A had a great time with B visiting her cousins, and greeted me with a giant smile when they picked me up from the airport.  And although I missed her terribly, it was great to catch up with my friends and have some serious laughs.  Miami 2012 may be over, but I’m very much looking forward to the rest of the AS wedding events this spring, and the JB ones that will start this summer! PR here we come!

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5 thoughts on “Took My Talents to South Beach

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