Sunday, March 3, 2013

Road Trip!

In about two months, we'll be taking our first long road-trip as a family. Neither one of my kiddos have experienced the joy of the good ole family car trip - and neither Jack nor I have had the "wonderful" experience of driving hours on end in a packed car, only to constantly be feeding, entertaining, and doing whatever it takes to keep the kidlets happy in a small space for what will seem like forever.

We have this luxury in mid-May, when we hop in our car (nope, we have decided to forego minivan shopping unless a super duper steal comes along - we pay our car off this month and would like to use that payment to save some money to put a down payment on a nice minivan in the coming months). This means we'll be cruisin' in the Ford Escape.

We already have a game plan for packing (it is strategic according to our seasoned traveler friends), but I need your tips!

What are some things to pack, not to pack, and awesome games/activities for the kidlets? They're 3 1/2 and 1 1/2 and our drive to the Cleveland-area will be about 15+ hours. What is other advice that you'd like to share?

We need whatever it takes to survive!

1 comment:

Kristen said...

Okay I'm catching up on some of your posts. I am certainly no expert but we've had our share of road trips with the kiddos.
1) Go with the flow. Try (as the adults) not to set too many restrictions on the travel (i.e. when you will stop for lunch, where you will stop for the night, potty breaks, etc.). We let the kids set the pace so we don't get stressed out. If Sawyer has to go to the bathroom we stop and aren't concerned with the time. If we're too concerned with not stopping everyone's attitude can go downhill fast.
2) I'm sure you already know this but bring lots of snacks. I usually bring a variety of crackers, fruit and cereal then several ziploc bags. As the kids get hungry I pour a few snacks into the bag and pass it back. Helps keep the food off the floor and then you can trash the ziploc's when you get to your destination.
3) If you download games (iphone, ipad, computer) Monkey Lunchbox is great for toddlers. Sawyer played it for several hours when I introduced it to him on our last roadtrip. It is not free, but I think it was only $2...well worth the cost.
4)Mackie might enjoy a using a cookie sheet from the dollar store to play with magnetic alphabet letters. Or use it as a solid surface for coloring. My SIL took an aluminum can and put a magnet on the bottom. She filled the can with crayons and the magnet sticks to the cookie sheet making it easy for my niece to color on the road.
5) Give the Brax toys one at a time. The stash will last longer.
6) I know some people like to drive through the night. That doesn't work well for us. It usually works best for us to get the kids out of bed around their usual time and start driving right away. We can usually make it to lunch without stopping. We then take a long lunch at a restaurant with a play place (this is when smart phones come in handy). Let them run out some energy then hit the road again and hopefully they nap most of the afternoon. We then stop for supper and gauge how the kiddos are doing. At the supper stop we usually get the laptop out and find a place to stay for the night. We let the kids run around then usually hop back in the car for another 2-3 hours.
7) It's okay to let them cry just turn up the music :) By God's grace you will make it :)
Sorry to write a novel. Hope it helps! Looking forward to seeing you!