Thursday, August 2, 2012

Road Trip Survival Kit

School supplies are filling the store shelves, which means summer is almost over. But if you're planning a last-minute road trip, here are a few helpful hints I learned this summer. We made two long road trips, for a combined total of 21 hours of driving with all three kids (and we lived to tell about it!)

  • On our longest trip, I made an envelope for each hour of the trip. Every hour, the kids got to open an envelope to reveal a surprise. Sometimes it was a snack, other times a new game to play or a coloring book, or some new music to listen to. The surprise envelopes were a HUGE hit.
  • One of the favorite surprises (shown above) were the I Spy Wonder Tubes. I picked some up at the last minute, but I'm sure they'd be a pretty easy DIY project, as well. 
  • The license plate game is a great activity for older kids. I kinda like it, too.
  • I also snagged a good old-fashioned clipboard for each kid. I filled them with plain paper, coloring pages I found online and some Highlights hidden picture printables.
  • Kid-sized earphones are a must-have. Solves several problems...I don't have to listen to their movies, and they don't have to try to keep adult-sized earphones on their tiny little heads. Added bonus: these have a volume lock.
  • Spill-proof water cups for everyone, so you don't have to stop to change clothes when bump in the road causes a soaking wet toddler. My children absolutely, positively will NOT wear clothing with the slightest drop of water on it...please tell me I'm not alone. Oh, and while you're at it, make sure you throw in a change of clothes just in case. ;)
  • Fruit sauce packets are a great, healthy on-the-go snack, and it makes me feel better about all the junk food they consume while on the road.
  • Sunglasses or a suction-cup window shade are fantastic so you don't have to hear, "It's too sunny. The sun is in my eyes. It's too bright." Over and over and over.
  • And don't forget a stay-awake snack for the driver. Hot Tamales are my personal favorite.

Happy trails!


Big D and Me said...

I love the envelopes tip - we are veterans of 10-11 hour car trips with our 3 kiddos so the other tip I would have is being willing to stop. I really don't love spending 45 minutes in the Cracker Barrel store but it always gives my 3 year old the break she needs to keep going.

Sora Designs said...

wow, the hourly surprise envelope is a brilliant idea. I never thought about that.