The season for family road trips is upon us, which I cannot wrap my head around because wasn't winter break like four days ago?! Anyway. Seems like car trips are either a source of happy, funny memories or an absolute black mark on the family history...sometimes an amalgam of both. We've got upcoming travel plans and I'm trying to plan ahead in hopes that we can infuse our journeys with some joy.
Here's that I'm thinking:
* A trip journal with pages like...
- The W's - WHERE are we going? WHO will we see? WHAT would you like to do there?
- 5 THINGS (you've heard on this trip, seen on this trip, thought about, tasted...),
- Draw a picture of what you can see out the window right now.
* Books on tape that we've checked out from the library.
* Something we could memorize as a family - a short poem or scripture.
* Wishing we had this darling car trip bingo game (pictured above), but we'll improvise and come up with a fun "I Spy" game with things the kids can watch for while we drive. There will, of course, be a tasty reward for finding all the items.
* I like to be prepared with fun snacks, new stickers, plenty of paper and markers, a CD full of favorite songs, a new movie.
* I'm going to have a little note or surprise for the kids to open every hour - anything from a stick of gum or fun snack to a little note announcing that a family sing-along is about to begin (and then dedicate the next several minutes to playing and singing favorite songs - I'm already working on a Family Favorites album with plenty of Raffi, Elizabeth Mitchell, Disney tunes and pop songs my kids are familiar with).
* The guessing game is a stand-by family favorite of ours. "I'm thinking of something that lives in the forest..."
I realize some of these things take a bit of planning and preparation, but if we can stave off some of the boredom and bickering that inevitably set in on the road? Worth it!
Your turn: I'd really love to know what you do to pass the time peaceably
on a long road trip. Any suggestions you've got would be lovely.