Planning the Trip of a Lifetime With Kids
By Donna Stark
Just because your summer traveling has ended, it doesn’t mean that more traveling isn’t right around the corner. In fact, for many parts of the country, fall breaks are only a couple of weeks away, and we certainly can’t forget about the holidays, one right after the other. It’s definitely a busy time of the year and many families are going to end up finding themselves back on the road … for hours … and with a car full of bored children. Is there anything worse?
Traveling with Kids
Simply thinking about traveling with kids can be exhausting. How in the world did our parents do it in a time where electronic devices ceased to exist? Oh, I know … they just stuffed their little lovelies in the back of the family station wagon, right? Well, station wagons are hard to come by nowadays and there’s a little thing called seatbelt laws that prevent us from doing that today. So what to do? Well, here are some desperately-needed family road trip hacks that will keep the car clean and organized and the little ones entertained, hopefully for hours on end.
- Plastic cereal container for trash - Reduce your stress and the amount of garbage on the floor by purchasing a plastic cereal container, lining it with a grocery bag, and snapping the lid in place. Your kids can pop open the “pour” lid to throw their trash away while keeping all the other trash tucked neat and tidy inside.
- Plastic tray for eating - And while you are out buying plastic … head to the dollar store and purchase some plastic trays with sides. They are perfect for eating in the car because your children can spread their food out on a stable surface without trying to juggle it all.
- Art bag - Want a mess-free car activity? Make your own “art bag” that is full of paper, coloring books (even adult coloring books for your teens), and colored pencils. It’s so convenient to have all of these supplies in one place and extra-helpful for instant entertainment at restaurant stops.
- Map it out - Print out a map of your route, have it laminated, and hand your appropriately-aged child a dry-erase marker so they can chart the trip along the way. Appropriately-aged is the key word here.
- Movie time - Replicate the feel of a movie theater by bringing bags of popcorn and your child’s favorite movie treats into the car. Then throw in a new flick on your car’s device, or bring one from home, and enjoy the little bit of silence.
Hit the Road!
Do you feel ready for your road trip? Are you actually looking forward to it more than you are dreading it? By keeping the car clean and organized, and your kids entertained, you are able to start your trip on the right foot. So go ahead … plan the trip of a lifetime!
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