Inside: Heading out on a road trip with kids? Don’t forget to pack these important things (along with a good sense of humor!)
Last month we took a trip to Colorado and Wyoming to visit family. Have you ever been? It’s gorgeous out there. Wide open spaces, mountain vistas, blue skies for days. Not to mention smiling cousin faces and kites and puppy snuggles.
The one and only bone I have to pick with the Wild West is that places are quite far apart from each other. So we road trip it. A lot. But we can even put a positive spin on all that driving, because it resulted in a comprehensive list of things you might forget to bring on a road trip with kids.
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Taking a Road Trip with Kids? Don’t Forget These 6 Things
Pen and paper ready? Let’s go!
1) Your Patience
I packed my patience. Meticulously. Along with everything else either of my children might need. Because who pack the bags? Moms.
But I realized en route from the greater Denver area up through the Rocky Mountains that I had only packed enough patience for a four day trip and our trip was six days. My mistake. I’ll own that. So by the 34th time my kids requested a snack, and a new movie, and not that book, I was using middle names in hushed tones.
Luckily my mother in law is a saint and she packed extra patience. And better juice boxes.
Child Bladder Remote Control
Little known fact: There are very few restrooms in between the Rocky Mountain range and north west Colorado.
Widely known fact: Three year olds and two year olds don’t “hold it.”
So if you forgot your child bladder remote control then just make sure you bring one of these handy travel potties. And find a safe “pull over on the highway” location.
Your Dexterity and Grace
Seated between a two year old and a three year old for many driving hours has its perks. You get to half watch a lot of Pixar films. You get to sneak eat several fruit snacks. Oh, and if you somehow get both kids to sleep at the same time then you get to sit in silence for a whole ten minutes!
But two year olds and three year olds require car seats. Car seats are handy for safety and all that jazz, but they are less handy for maneuvering a 33 year old body over. And you might end up accidentally stomping on one of your kids’ DVD players and shattering half the screen.
Don’t do that… I beg of you.
Do you have a two year old who would happily survive on applesauce pouches? Is a stop on your road trip a family wedding? If so, can I suggest that you bring many more applesauce pouches than you think you might need? Approximately 14 more.
Because, and I’m just spit-balling here, you might end up at a cousin’s wedding with your toddler and preschooler and manage to keep them both seated quietly through the ceremony until the the officiant says “And now for the exchanging of rings.” Then your two year old might request a snack. And said two year old might not want raisins or crackers. She might LOUDLY demand applesauce. Applesauce that you didn’t bring because you ran out of pouches around mile 512.
But I digress a little. For real though, applesauce pouches are great for the car.
When is Santa’s birthday? Do elephants sleep? How do planes fly? Can I fly? Can I drive? How long until I’m 16? Why doesn’t Daniel Tiger wear pants? (Alright, that last question is mine.)
If you’re on a long road trip with kids stuff is going to come up. Stream of consciousness, word association, “kid, where did that come from?” stuff. Better have that Britanica ready. You’re going to need some answers.
All the Baby Wipes. All of Them.
Pit stops at gas stations, chocolate covered raisins, boogers, previously mentioned applesauce pouches, more pit stops.
These are a few of the messiest things.
Not even to mention this:
“Mommy, I draw on your arm? It’ll be super fast.”
You know what you’re going to need… Wipes, wipes, baby.
Ready to Buckle Up for Your Road Trip with Kids Now?
You should be pretty well prepared I think. Pack up those bags, don’t forget the essentials, and most importantly, have fun!
It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey.
Except when it’s REALLY about the destination…