It’s road trip time! We are heading out tomorrow on a drive across the country to go camping on Assateague Island in Maryland. This isn’t just any old camping trip, it’s a fantastic beach party with fabulous food and fun activities while we just happen to be camping in the sand dunes in a national park.
I’ve been busy putting together something silly to wear for the Mad Men happy hour and coming up with tapas ideas to serve at the Spanish themed happy hour that our team is in charge of. There’s tie dye making and a craft tent for kids. There’s beach volleyball, morning yoga and glow in the dark frisbee at night. And of course lots of body surfing and water fun!
Because we need so much gear, we will be driving instead of flying. It’s a long haul (over 1200 miles each way) but we take a few days to get there. We try to keep our road trips as green and healthy as possible but it can be hard when you are on the road for so long. This year we are taking a cousin along with us so we will have 3 boys in the car – two teenagers and an 8-year-old. Yikes – wish us luck!!
Here are a few tips for making a long road trip a little more bearable:
I hit Trader Joes the other day and stocked up on some healthier snacks like trail mix, granola bars and dried fruit. We will have a small cooler for fresh fruit & veggies and other perishables but I don’t want to take too much in case we run out of ice. With 3 growing boys in the car we will need LOTS of snacks!
We are downloading the book The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman for the trip. It’s a sort of magical, adventure story that I think my boys will love. It’s amazing how quickly time passes when you are listening to a good audio book. If you haven’t tried it yet, I highly recommend it!
Rules of the Road
Sitting in a car for a long time can be tough, especially for wiggly kids. Before we leave, we’re going to have a little pow-wow about rules and expectations for the trip. We’ll talk about things like: How much screen time do you get each day? How to best share the one iPad we own. Taking turns choosing the music we listen to. And of course, the importance of being respectful to each other. Squabbles will happen – they always do – but we’ll try to keep it all in perspective.
Active Rest Stops
When we stop, I encourage the kids (and myself) to run around a bit. It was easier when they were younger – they would chase me in any safe place we could find to run. Now we will try to find a place to throw the frisbee or do some jumping jacks at the very least. I find the more I move, the easier it is to get back in that car again!
(One more thing…..maybe this is TMI but we carry a pee bottle in the car in case of emergencies….and it has been used more times than I’d like to admit.)
How do you make road trips fun for kids?
Image credit: Nicholas_T via flickr – cc