Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Traveling with kids

Last night we got back from a short trip to the Twin Cities. Ken had a meeting to go to and the rest of us went to as we like to be with Daddy as much as possible and also my sister and her family live in St. Paul and we love to see them. (We have a bunch of other friends down there too but unfortunately this trip was to quick to see any of them.)

Anyway our 4 plus hour trip made me think about traveling with kids. We enjoy traveling, and enjoy doing it with our children. We regularly take trips to the cities and also have taken many other trips that are a lot longer than that (out to Reno, Nevada, down to Louisiana, Over to Wyoming, down to southern Iowa, From Kansas to MN and much more). Sometimes when we have told others about taking those trips with children they think we must be crazy but I can honestly say we have had a lot of fun.

I thought I would share some of the things we do on trips to make them fun for everyone (I don't have anything really new or spectacular but maybe it might still help your family in some way).

  • We have snacks and water bottles. Having something to munch on can keep a child busy for quite a while. I know not everybody likes this because it can make the vehicle quite a mess, but it works for us.
  • We bring books if we will be traveling in the daylight. Looking at and reading books can keep our kids entertained nicely.
  • We play games. This past trip we had fun working on coming up with words that rhymed with each other. One person would start by saying a word like "cook" and then we would go around to everybody while each person added a word that rhymed. If you couldn't think of one you were out, we played until only one person could think of one. (we did even out the playing field a little by giving hints to the younger players). This game was fun but I didn't do real well ~ Ken won every time!! Other games we played were seeing how many things we could see that started with a certain letter; Then we would come up with categories and see who could first come up with something under that category that started with a certain letter.; We also will play I spy; ABC game ~ where you have to find the alphabet on signs etc.
  • Tell stories. Mara and Jonathan kept busy quite a while this trip by taking turns telling stories. This also kept Aaron entertained as well.
  • Do dramatic presentations of stories. We had a blast doing "Goldilocks and the three bears" and the "3 little Pigs". One person was the narrator and then we assigned parts to everybody else and they had to speak when their character spoke. This was a lot of fun for all of us. You could also do bible stories and any other well known story.
  • Sing. This is one of my all time favorite traveling activities.
  • Sleep. We always encourage our kids to sleep. If they fall to sleep we try to keep driving and driving and not stop unless we have to.

I know that using videos is quite popular in this day in age, but that isn't something that I prefer to do with our kids so I like to find other things to keep them busy. Thank-fully we have kids that like to travel and though we do still hear "Are we about there?" from time to time over all our kids are easy to travel with.

I would LOVE to hear your ideas for traveling with kids!!


Keren and Peggy said...

what sweet sleeping babies!

martha said...

I love traveling with my kids. I think a lot of keeping them pleasant to ride with is having things for them to do and also them knowing that being fussy is not an option in the car any more then it is at home. I like to keep a bag of little toys, books, etchsketch and snacks by me that I can ration out to them. sometimes I give them each a bag of thier own but it seems when I do that it gets dumped on the floor fast.

Amy and Mark said...

When traveling as kids (even though my family just had two children) my Mom and Dad always played books on tape in the car. We really enjoyed the Boxcar Children mystery series. They were good, wholesome stories and allowed us to develop critical thinking skills as we worked to solve the mystery.


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