MeMe - Raises Her Hand (-_-) (Mommy Of A Toddler And Teen) - posted on 05/29/2012 ( 17 moms have responded )
Road-tripping with the kiddos this holiday weekend?
Trust us, you won’t be alone. A recent TripAdvisor survey of more than 1,800 Americans found that 34 percent of Americans are traveling for Memorial Day weekend (up 8 percent from last year), and of those traveling, 70 percent are getting there by car.
Makes for a rousing chorus of “99 bottles of (root)beer on the wall,” doesn’t it?
So what do you do to keep the kids occupied (and your own sanity in check) while your minivan’s rubber meets the road?
Anne Taylor Hartzell, founder of Seattle-based hiptravelmama.com, has a whole A-to-Z list of things that help entertain daughters ages 4 and 8 while traveling. While they routinely take hours-long car rides to visit family in Oregon, Hartzell has honed her road-trip skills on the hour commute she makes each day to her child’s school.
“Being in the car a lot is standard protocol for us,” Hartzell says, but on daily hauls she tries to go as tech-free as possible, with items like drawing materials, beads for making necklaces, journals for writing and small tins of clay.
For longer, vacation-style road trips, Hartzell’s smoking gun is what she calls the backpack of surprise. For every trip, her girls get a backpack filled with snacks, age-appropriate toys (which she often finds in the $1 aisle at Target) and other knickknacks. Hartzell uploads new movies to the family iPad and makes special music playlists for the girls.
The key, says Hartzell, is that they aren’t allowed to look in the backpack until they are on the road. “They always get excited,” she says. “It’s the element of surprise that gives them something to look forward to.”
We asked TODAY Moms Facebook readers to share their own car-trip tricks and while some are all about letting kids plug in to DVD players and headset (can you say blissful silence?) others like to kick it old school with family sing-alongs and travel bingo.
I have yet to really go on a long road trip but I do see it in our future.
I know when I was growing up we often drove to my Grandparents, which was a 16hr drive. I had tons of fun, in the back. I made little huts to hide in (of course seat-belts were not required then) and listened to my walk-man. I played license plate games and I played the how many "red" (or whatever colour) cars can you count. I liked to play "I spy with my little eye" but it was a bit hard, since I am an only child! LOL
What do you do with your little ones, when travelling to keep them entertained? Or what do you recall being little and doing when travelling?