Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Road Trippin with Littles

Many people have asked me how I dared take a long road trip with three kiddos alone. Honestly? A feisty determination along with lots of dvds and a {tentative} plan in hand.

Since we had to drive literally and I was on my own for the first half of the drive, leaving in the middle of the night was not an option. I knew I wouldn't be able to do that alone and it wasn't worth the risk of what could happen. There would also have to be frequent stops for potty breaks and to nurse Elissa.

I accepted early on that the kids would be getting in a lot of screen time. They don't watch a ton of tv when we are home so this was a special treat for them. Emma and Easton took turns picking the show. I did panic momentarily on the way home when the cord for the dvd player was stepped on and broken. My mom stepped in and saved the day with a power invertor. I was ready to find the nearest store and purchase a new one!

The older kids each packed a backpack for the trip and were allowed to keep it close by in the car. this way they had easy access to their toys yet they were contained when not in use. I also added a few fun surprises- think dollar store toys and activities. That way I didn't spend a fortune and it wasn't the end of the world if something was lost or broken.

I also packed lots of snacks and drinks to hand out along the way. Everything was easy to pass out, either individually packaged from the store or divided and bagged up before we left home. I tried to find items that weren't too messy for the car, but knew the van would need a good interior cleaning once we got home.

Another thing I tried to keep in mind was stops to run off some energy. Even with food stops and bathroom runs, the kids would get restless. McDonalds website has a great feature that allows to map out every location along your route and shows which ones have a playplace. My kids love to play at Micky D's and it was great to explore some new ones they have never been to. There were also some nice rest stops that had lots of room for the kids to run when it was nice outside.

I also made sure to have some good tunes along for me. I would turn all the speakers off except for mine so I could jam while the kids watched their shows in back. This cd was made for me by my bestie from high school. We took many road trips together and while it would have been amazing to have her along, this had to do.

Nothing Earth shattering here, but hope it gives you some good ideas for your next trip!

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