Monday, July 22, 2013

Traveling with a baby

Traveling with a baby can be a little tricky if you've never done it before.

My partner and I traveled from Florida to the United Kingdom when our little girl was three weeks old.

Honestly, it wasn't that bad. Our little one was pretty easy to please during the newborn stage. She slept for most of the plane ride, only waking briefly to eat and then go back to sleep. It was perfect.

Now that she's a few months old, however, keeping her happy during car rides that last a few hours can be difficult. These are the things, although obvious, are what we do to ensure a relatively peaceful journey:

1. Make sure she or he is dry. Sitting in a wet diaper, even if it's only a little wet, can be quite uncomfortable.

2. Keep him or her cool. I know that our carseat/stroller can get very toasty, especially during the summertime, which can be miserable if no airflow or air conditioning is reaching her.  Conversely, keeping baby warm in colder temps. is equally as important for comfort.

3. Give her or him a nice, long feed. So when baby does start to fuss when you put her in the carseat, she will most likely just fall asleep after a couple of minutes and stay asleep because she is full of warm milk.

All babies are different, of course, but we thought we'd share what worked for my little girl.  Happy travels from North Star!

Friday, July 5, 2013

Relocating? Know your area: Social Life

After you've unpacked your boxes and settled into your new place, you may be thinking about tapping into the local social scene.  That could mean many different things.

To show you what we mean, we're going to use Delray Beach, one of our most popular relocation destinations, as an example.

There is always something going on in Delray.  Whether it's a beach volleyball tournament, a poetry festival, a bicycle race, or a knitting group, you are bound to find an event or group that interests you.

Almost every month has something worth checking out:

January:  Palm Beach Poetry Festival

February: Delray Beach International Tennis Championships, the Annual Delray Beach Garlic Fest
March: St. Patrick's Day Parade, Delray Beach Twilight Festival (Bicycle race)

May: A 5k run to benefit firefighters
July: 4th of July fireworks
September:  Flavor Palm Beach  (special prices and menus at local restaurants)
October:  A 10k run supporting victims of domestic violence, the Annual Downtown Delray Beach Craft Festival
December:  Ice-skating downtown by the 100-foot Christmas tree

Also, ongoing events, such as those at the library and downtown, can be found online:  (Hagen Ranch branch)

Monday, July 1, 2013

Relocating? Know your area: Food Edition

Moving to a new city, state, or region can be difficult.  You may face changes that you weren't prepared for:  Lack of friends and family, different climate, and unfamiliar stores can also pose challenges.

Preparing yourself for the move to a new area can help ease the transition and make life less stressful when you actually arrive.   

That's why North Star will be doing a series of posts to provide suggestions on familiarizing yourself with your new area.  We will separate posts by category:  Food, Social Life, and Local Attractions.

Let's get started.

We all need it, and where we get it can be quite the complicated answer.

Grocery Stores
Grocery stores are oftentimes regional, but there are several chains that are national.  These stores will sometimes have coupons listed on their website, so be sure to check!

National:  Trader Joe's, Whole Foods, The Fresh Market, Safeway, Walmart Supercenter, Kmart Supercenter

Southeast:  Publix, Winn-Dixie, Food Lion, Harris Teeter

East/Northeast:  Wegmans, BJ's Wholesale, C-Town, ShopRite

Midwest:  County Market, Nash Finch Company, Sunflower Farmers Market

Southwest:  Fresh and Easy

Northwest:  WinCo Foods

Farmer's Markets/ CSA
One of the most overlooked sources of food is the farmer him/herself.  Farmer's markets are not only a fantastic source for fresh food but also a great place for meeting people in the area.

Nowadays, farmer's markets usually have websites or Facebook groups, so don't be afraid to type in a simple Google search for a market in your area.

And if you're really gung-ho for vegetables, try signing up for a CSA (community-supported agriculture) box for a week of fresh fruit and veg.  They usually run about $25 for one week's worth of fresh produce that can feed a small family.

Local Restaurants
Last but not least, don't forget local restaurants.

Yelp, TripAdvisor, and Urban Spoon are all great sites to help you find the gems of local dining in your area.

We hope these suggestions help make the move to your new area easier and less stressful!
North Star Corporate Housing