Traveling with your little one(s)
I have experience- both in driving and in flying cross-country.What you pack and what games you bring depend largely on the ages and sexes ( sometimes gender DOES matter!) of your children . When we drove on day trips-- sometimes going through 3 states in a day-- we packed up water and NON chocolately snacks with cut up orange slices and bananas. I would also bring 1 change of clothes and sometimes PJ's ( depending on how late we were out) We would give each child a cassette recorder especially made for small hands and 2 tapes each ( earphones are a blessing!) For the older kids, we'd pack travel sized games and trivia books-- the AAA has some good books on car games for the family. As they got older, I'd print out my own word search puzzles that had names and places of people and sites we would visit. If you are going on a long day trip, bring a soft ball or a frisbee to toss around while stretching your legs. Eating on the road can be tricky and very expensive-so buy snack before you leave and if possible decide what restaurants are along your way and pick one that best fits your family's agenda.( The allure of fast food joints and play areas were nice, but sometimes controlling what kind food my family ate was more important.Rule of thumb: Lunch is fast food( McDonald's etc...) and dinner was sit down( Denny's or Roy Rogers)Pit stops are important too- they largely depend on the age of the kids risking a long road trip with no pit stops is not good idea. I've also done a lot of flying with small children and no hubby to help!... before the trip I would hoard all of the kid meal toys I could get my hands on and raid the dollar store ofrcoloring books and markers- unlike a car trip- DO NOT pack anything you don't mind replacing once you've reached your destination.Call the airline a couple of days before you leave and see if there is a way to have an attendant at the airport you're flying into can help you by meeting you at your gate with an electric cart to help you make your connecting flight or take you to baggage claim-- find out if there are any TSA regulations that pertain to helping you get your family to your destination more quickly. I have fond memories of attendants with electirc "go- carts" letting us hop on to make sure we made our connection- running through an airport with kids and strollers and bags may be amusing to others-but wearing on mom and dad.
if you are going out of state, try to find coloring books and trivia books about the state you're visiting. Most of all- keep your cool and your sense of humor!
Gail - posted on 12/23/2010
To stop fights they each got a roll of nickels. Whenever we had to reprimand them for fighting or anything else in the car they had to pay us a nickel. When we got to the destination they could spend whatever they had left on any trinket or souvenir (no candy).
Nichole - posted on 12/21/2010
SO! Christmas! heh yeah...about to take that LONG trip to New Hampshire! WOO HOO! Totally miss my family and cant WAIT to see them!
I am even MORE excited about getting prepared for the ride. My son is, for the most part, a really good car companion. He always has SOMETHING for conversation or something that he sees out the window that he wants you to see, but you JUST CANT cause you care driving! hah
Now I like to pack a cooler of snacks and breakfast/lunch/dinner(depending on the time of travel), to cut down the cost of food and drinks when going down the road. Now I love my share of McDonalds and WaWa food and drinks haha but it DOES add up, especially when tolls are involved.
In terms of entertainment, I bought my son a dry erase board a while ago where he can practice his letters and draw his own creations, its AWESOME! and for his birthday he received this MIND BOGGLING book called 'Made You Look' (like a modern day 'Where's Waldo') where he sits and searches for things that are hidden or wrong. Keeps his eyes and mind busy!
We also bring up the oldie but goodie "Eye Spy!" heh (Just make sure you ask them if its INSIDE or OUTSIDE of the vehicle hahah Iost MANY times on that stipulation)
Well everyone! Share what you do! and if you are traveling this holiday or in the near future, BE SAFE! and Play Hard! heh
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