Car trips are some of my craziest memories from childhood. Mom and Dad piled the five of us into the back seat for the six hour drive to see the grandparents. In those days before seat belts and car seats, we could all fit there!
It didn’t take long for us to feel crowded, and start to get on each other’s nerves. Sometimes two of us would choose to make a “bed” in the floor just to ease things. But always there was the “How long til we get there?” question being asked. It didn’t take many of those trips dealing with irritable kids in the car to persuade my folks that it was better to travel at night so we would sleep on the way!
Those not-so-fond memories were the catalyst for me to spend a bit of time trying to find ways for our kids to enjoy traveling with us. We learned that although it takes a little longer reaching our destination, we’re all a lot happier if we stop every two to two-and-a-half hours for bathroom breaks and stretching. We find rest areas where the kids can get out and run around for a few minutes to make the next leg of the trip not so frustrating.
We also invested in some items to keep stashed in the car for those times when the road got too long. Pens, colored pencils, and wire-bound notebooks to write and draw in, and magnetic games. And thanks to electronic advances, DVD’s and mp3 players are part of our packing list.