I remember when I was a kid traveling in our car, I always wanted to know, “Are we there yet?” And I did not want my brother on my side of the backseat. This was before car safety seats—when you could curl up in the back seat with a book or toy. And if I dropped something on the floor, I could just pick it up myself. Now that I am the parent, I know what it feels like to hear, “Are we there yet?” seventeen times before we’ve even left Rhode Island! I dream of sitting up front (when my husband drives) with a hot cup of coffee and a pile of magazines—and no interruptions.
Even if “no interruptions” is a fantasy, here is how I try to at least minimize the interruptions.
- Stock the backseat bucket with new books from the library that the kids have not seen yet.
- Restock the CD player with music, or audio books that everyone will enjoy or load up your iPod with your kids favorite music for them and listen to your own favorite music up front!
- I prepack a travel bag of goodies (to keep up front) with things like magnetic playsets, toys, puppets, etc., that the boys have not seen in a long time or are new for the trip. When everyone is getting a little cranky or bored, I pull out surprises from the travel bag.
- Load up on snacks – water, crackers, carrots, and sandwiches. I try to avoid bananas or anything too mushy that I will be living with and smelling for the next month.
- Bring a change of clothes, diapers (if necessary), wipes, and plastic bags (for car sickness or soiled clothes).
Magnetic playsets by Imaginetics are great for traveling. Find themed sets such as, At the Farm, Dinosaurs, Mr. Potato Head, My Little Pony and more at Creatoyivity at 808 Hope Street, Providence, RI.
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