Dear Diary,

As the weather warms up, my family gears up to take more road trips. We’re mapping out agendas, filling our days with trips to museums, playgrounds and festivals. All of this activity works up an appetite. Typically, there aren’t many healthy snack options at gas stations and rest stops. And when we attend festivals and other outdoor events, junk food is often a staple on the menu. Although I love food truck roundups, I don’t love eating fast food frequently. So, we try to navigate around the vending machines and deep fryers by packing snacks.

Here are some options.

Trail Mix: You can mix up a sweet and salty snack at home with popcorn, raisins, pretzels, dried fruit, chocolate, nuts and whole-grain cereal.

Pack Protein: Protein helps you stay full, especially on a long road trip. Whip up an old school favorite, like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, or a modern meal, like turkey wraps.

Click here for more recipes and snack ideas.

About The Author

Vlog Mom/DFTM Creator

Not long ago, Heather Hopson hosted a television show in the Cayman Islands. Today, she's back home writing a different kind of story as a new mom. In her 15 years working as a professional journalist, this by far is her best assignment! Growing up, she dreamed of becoming Oprah Winfrey. She was the features editor for her school’s newspaper and a teen talk show host for her city’s most popular radio station. She went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Michigan State University. After graduation, she worked as a television producer and reporter at CBS, NBC and Fox affiliates throughout the U.S. Instead of heading to Chicago to join Ms. Winfrey on her set, she bought a plane ticket to the Cayman Islands instead. She arrived five days before a category five hurricane! She lived in paradise for seven years, hosted an award-winning television show and traveled the globe with a government delegation. She also served on the board of directors for Big Brothers Big Sisters and spearheaded a Send a Kid to Camp campaign. Then, she relocated to Washington, D.C. to obtain a teaching certification and instruct 8th grade reading at a high needs middle school. She later returned to her hometown of Pittsburgh, PA to raise her daughter Caitlynn, now 4-years-old. During her 10-month-stint as a stay-at-home mom, Caitlynn inspired her to create this blog, and Diary of a First Time Mom was born on Mother’s Day 2012. Two years later, she expanded the family to include 20+ writers. Currently, Heather serves as the communications director at Allies for Children. In addition, she is the owner of Motor Mouth Multimedia, which ranked #49 in Startup Nation’s Home-Based 100 Competition sponsored by Discover Card and Sam’s Club. Recently, The Pittsburgh Foundation and The Heinz Endowments selected Heather to receive an Emerging Black Artist award to develop Diary of a First Time Mom.

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