How to survive traveling with your kids

Hello, hello and happy Friday. With the arrival of November it brings to mind holiday travel – which can be fun – but when children are involved it can become a overwhelming production in no time. Before I had my daughter I would notice how some parents seemed to barely make it through the holidays with their sanity intact. I would feel so sorry for them, this was after all, supposed to be the happiest season of all…right?!?

So after I had my daughter and we were faced with our very our travel adventure during the holidays, I figured I would try to lighten my burden by being prepared,

Here are a few items that always come with us on a road trip:

  • baby wipes – to help with almost everything – wipe off dirty hands, faces, seats, car interiors, windows, toys, the dog…you name it.
  • plastic bags from grocery store – I know its almost taboo to use them anymore, but they are so handy to have for dirty clothes, shoes, and a quick clean-up of your vehicle, and to pick up that ‘thing’ on your floor board – that really, you don’t know what it is.
  • ziplock bags – 1 and 2 gallon – for stinky items, especially if you still use diapers. The larger size is good for clothes that may have been over those diapers.
  • food/snacks – easy to handle is a must. Dry oat cereal, crackers, individual packages of applesauce, fruit snacks, and yogurt. I also pre-cut veggies (carrots, celery sticks). I also found freeze dried yogurt bites when my daughter was just starting solids, they were actually pretty good. I try to stay away from sugar on car trips, I don’t need a little one with a sugar high in the middle of a long drive.
  • water bottles/cups – something that can be easily opened/closed.
  • pillows/blankets – you also want to remember that one special toy. Bad things happen when kids forget their absolute favorite toy, very bad things happen…
  • nightlight/flashlight – sometimes its scary somewhere new.
  • map – so the kids can follow along

Along with must have items above I also make sure that there are a lot of different activities. A bored child can become a very annoying child in a hurry, especially in a small, confined space, like a car.

Other activities that can be enjoyed:

  • have the kid explain what they see, color, size, etc.
  • counting car game – I traveled a lot when I was younger and a game that we enjoyed – the whole family that is – was the counting car game, I don’t know if there is an actual name for it, that’s just what we called it – anyway the idea is everybody picks a number, and then you start counting the cars that are going the opposite direction, when you get to your number, that’s “your car”. Then start over. Kinda goofy, but it passes the time.
  • Sing – bring on the tunes!

What do you use to stay sane while traveling?

D