This summer chances are you are headed somewhere: the beach, camping, vacation, or maybe just the local fair. This means you are probably going to be in the car or some sort of vehicle longer than you’d like to with your kiddos. We had the joy of sharing our roadtripping tips in Locale Magazine this month so we thought we’d expand on that and share our all around tips for traveling with kids.
As a parent, driving to Trader Joe’s can seem like a road trip, but we love going the distance and planning day trips with our boys. We love making trips to the San Diego Zoo, Botanic Gardens, San Clemente, Balboa Park, Julian and even Santa Cruz and Iowa! Megan and I actually packed up our boys up in the car and drove to South Coast Plaza to meet one of our entrepreneur icons, Susan Peterson. It was CRAZY but so daring and worth it and the boys had the best time on the carousal in the mall.
Keeping the littles occupied:
This is most tricky. Entertaining a child comes and goes in stretches. The goal of a parent while traveling is to find that thing that distracts for the longest period of time. We have found that the almighty iPad works wonders-download a few good Pixar movies, games and apps, and it should provide you some distance. We also love cultivating the minds of our young with coloring books and Melissa and Doug reusable sticker books. You can also use an empty DVD case and put paper on one side and tape a few pens and crayons to the other for your own inexpensive coloring case.
Fun games to play:
Sounds cheesy but if you’re in the car and your kids are older, playing the ABC game where you compete to find the whole alphabet on street signs and license plates can be tons of fun. Our boys are a little younger but they love when we point out big rigs, tractors, garbage trucks and any construction vehicle. Traveling the your kids is a great time to educate them in good music which can also turn into a dance party. For example, Orrin loves Daft Punk and Waylon favors Led Zeppelin.
Making pit stops is a must when traveling with children, especially for nursing moms. Find a comfortable place to stop and let the kids run around and where mom and baby can nurse happily. However, if the kids are asleep DO NOT STOP. I’m sure we didn’t need to tell you that though.
Snacks can serve as entertainment. We have found that fruit snacks, goldfish crackers, dried mango, raisins, fruit leathers, and Inner Peas from Trader Joe’s are winners! If you’re in a bind, just go for it and break out the candy- Dum Dums and M&M’s are sometimes the only thing that will work.
Remember when there is gold fish cracker dust everywhere and the kids are screaming; once you reach your destination it will be worth it! You are making memories with your children and family that they will love and cherish and eventually you will too.
Our Favorite Traveling Products for kids:
Some images of our past travels with our boys…