Going on a little trip - a balancing act

So i'm packing up the kids (ben included) and taking them camping. Well, that's a stretch. I think our cabin has wifi and A/C, but it will STILL feel like camping. But, as moms, we all know that this requires about 3 weeks of planning, shopping, packing and preparing, then packing again, repacking, loading the car, unloading the car, rearranging the carseats and then driving in circles because someone forgot their "blankie". Let's just summarize my thoughts in this one picture:

Ok, now with that out of the way, I wanted to touch a second on how to eat and stay healthy while outside of the comfort zone of our own kitchen and daily life. I struggle with this, often. I have been super strict and not enjoyed the little pleasures or drinks, I have also taken the extreme opposite tack and eaten and drank everything in sight. Where to find balance? Both of those examples, I was not happy. I either felt deprived, or I overindulged to the point of gross whale-like, vomitus behavior.  I would come back from my holiday, no better off, and thinking about what I ate, either guiltily or deprived and very little memories of the actual FUN. Wait- What? 

I want this time to be different. I want to have fun, enjoy my food, enjoy my kids, the weather, the family time, the environment. I don't want food to be at the front of my anxiety every single moment. I want to have smores, drink beer by the campfire and not stress about getting stomach cramps.

Here's my plan:
1. Plan out the meals. the easier you make it on yourself, the easier it is to ACTUALLY DO.
  • I know there will be some "on the road" type meals that I cannot control, so I will go in trying to make the healthiest decision I can. If it's McDonalds, (then, so help me god- just kidding), then I am going to get a grilled chicken sandwich (no bun) and enjoy my fries. 
  • Pack foods that are easy to assemble, prepare and eat. This is KEY, since i will have complete control over what these things will be. A sample menu for our 3 days would be: Pre-made cups of steel cut oats and I will add banana slices, Pre-made egg muffin sandwiches (some without cheese and with lean ham), whole grain (or sprouted) bread and lunchmeat to make sandwiches, bags of chips (i have rice chips for myself),  a pre-made pot of turkey chili, pre-made breakfast burritos (made with lean turnkey sausage and little cheese, all natural chicken "hot dogs"(i will have mine sans bun).
  • Have plenty of (realistic) healthy snack options (that i actually like!) - Hard boiled eggs, bananas, rice cakes, nuts, packs of almond butter, guacamole or hummus. Pre-chopped and ready to eat veggies like carrot sticks, celery and red peppers. I can pre-make protein treats and individually wrap them, so i can just grab them if sitting by the pool or on the back of a horse 🐴 😬
2. Eat and drink slowly and in moderation, and actually enjoy what i'm doing, when i'm doing it. If I want to have a few beers by the campfire while my kids eat candy or ice cream, then I will.  I can make a choice of what i want more; if it's dessert, then so be it- but i don't need to eat and drink ALL OF THE THINGS.

3. Get some exercise. Now, i'm not planning on running laps around the campground at the crack of dawn (although I have done that before!), but i do plan on hiking with the kids (and this usually entails carrying a 45lb blonde curly sack of potatoes on my back). I do plan on going for walks, playing laser tag, walking to the canteen (did i really just use my pre-teen camp word?). I plan on laying by the pool, lets be real, i'm not going "swimming". HA! that would mean i would have to get my hair wet!!!

4. Drink water. All. Day. Long. In addition to everything else i will be consuming, I will try to constantly have my water cup by my side. I will just refill that sucker and keep drinking every chance I get. Not only will i stay hydrated, but it helps with flushing out toxins from my not-so-good choices.

Let's just see how this plays out. I am going to try to really focus on the memories that we will be making and enjoying the time we have together before things really shake up this summer. I am not going to be counting calories or worrying about over-eating. I am going to have fun, relax and enjoy the view. I want to feel GOOD about my decisions and I want to feel good.

Here are some of the items that i have picked up for the trip:
(not pictured: hard boiled eggs, rice cakes, almond butter, water bottles, green apples, rice chips)

Now, you might want to tell me that some of these items are not "clean", and you would be right. I am being realistic in my expectations. I know there are some things have have fruit sugars or might have "natural flavors". But we are all doing the best we can !!! Make better choices. These aren't always perfect choices.