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Monday, June 30, 2014

Road Trip with Kids

Road trip with kids
We just took a long trip across country, and it took us 5 days to do. To be honest I was terrified to be in the car with my little boys for that long. I didn't know how it was going to go and I thought they were going to hate it and scream the entire time. But guess what?!?!  I was floored with how well our boys did! And it actually turned out to be a really enjoyable trip. 
I wanted to keep electronics out of the picture for as long as I could. And for the first two days (15 hours) the boys didn't use them. The following three days we watched one movie a day but that was it. They were really entertained by the activities I had for them, and seem to enjoy the trip going old school.  

So these are just some ideas I had in my massive bag for them to do while we traveled across country.
Road trip with kids
Flash cards. (From Target)
These could keep the boys entertained for hours. Tayte loves going through the animals and making the sounds for each card. He would go through them making the sounds and then I would go through them and it would go back and forth. Daxton loved the Traffic signs and as we went through them we tried to find them outside and got excited when we made a match!
Road trip with kids
Coloring books:
Both the boys loved to be able to color as much as they want. 
Road trip with kids
Water Bottles (from Stuck on You)
These were life savers I tell ya! The boys never fought about which bottle was 'theirs'. These water bottles come personalized with their names on it, score! Also, this was the only thing they were in charge of. So if they wanted a drink they knew exactly were it was. 
Road trip with kids
Pencil and pencil sharpener.
The boys had fun just turning the pencil in the sharpener. They were amazed to see how a pencil got sharp.Road trip with kids
Magnet Kit ( from Melissa and Doug)
This was so fun to have and the boys played with it for hours.Road trip with kids
These were all presents that I had wrapped up. Some of them were from the dollar store or target $1 bin, or from Amazon. I had a few more that are not pictured, but the boys really loved opening a present and it helped entertain them for a bit. It also helped when the boys were having a hard time getting back into the car after a gas station stop. It was a good motivator. 
Road trip with kids
Lace pictures.
These were great for the boys. It took lots of concentration.
Road trip with kids
We didn't end up getting to this, but it'll be great for future trips
Road trip with kids
I bought a couple of used books (new to them) for the boys and read them to the boys. They also had fun looking at them by themselves. 
Road trip with kids
Stickers! Stickers! Stickers!! 
These were like the main source of entertainment. It also helped to have such a wide variety so that the boys didn't feel like they were doing the same thing, 
Road trip with kids
Pop Toobs. 
These were a fun gift that I wrapped. I purchased them from Amazon. They provided a lot of entertainment as they were made into snakes, telephones, elephant trunks... you get the point. 

Some other things that we did that are not pictures:
Play-do, drawing, we would sing a lot of songs, look out the window, learn new words, listen to music, put mustache stickers on, bubble wrap (they loved popping them!), toy figurines.

And snacks that were easy and not messy: string cheese, apples, snap peas, trail mix, cranberries, apple juice, popcorn and fruit snacks (fruit snacks were used in desperate situations or just because they were really good and they really look forward to them!)

Overall, the last tip I want to stress  is for the parents to have a positive attitude! To talk about how fun it is to see things and move around. We talked about how lucky we were to stay in hotel rooms and maybe even go swimming (ps swimming is a great tool for tiring them out before you start a long day of driving!) We talked about how we won't even want to get out of the car because we'll be having so much fun in the car. So being positive is a great key!

Sometimes it helps to get ideas from others so I hoped this help. Do you have a some great ideas for keeping kids entertained? I would love to add to my stash! :)  


ellen said...

I love that you were light on the electronics on your road trip. Hooray for you traveling the old school way!

Unknown said...

Really admire you Shelby for keeping the electronics to a very low percentage. Do that as LONG as you can with those two sweet boys! Wonderful ideas & glad your trip was SAFE & mostly FUN -- Thanks for sharing part of your Sweet Family's Life with us !!

The Dickeys said...

You guys are amazing! I'm so using this on our next cross country trip!

Unknown said...

Thanks for doing a post on this!! So helpful! I'm totally using it for our drive to Chicago!