This post is all about how to keep your sanity while on a summer road trip with your family. I’ll have of tips, tricks, and DIY projects to make your next road trip so smooth that you’ll hear, “Are we there yet?”, less and, “That was fun!”, more!
For the Parents
The co-pilot needs to have a ton of stuff very accessible…and you still need space for your legs. Up front keep baby wipes containers with your kids favorite snacks. It’s easy to hand back!
Shower caddies as food trays!! I love to try to bring my own food, but when that’s not possible a fast food stop will do just fine. Either way you look at it, these shower caddies are perfect to keep drinks standing up and fries off the ground. Little hands can easily grip the handle when passed from the front seat to the back. Plus the flat bottom sits nicely on little laps.
Freeze water bottles and use them instead of ice packs. You can drink them when they melt and discard or reuse the bottle. I love these divided tupperware to separate dry food from fruit or to separate different fruits in this case. I bought the tupperware and the mini cooler at CVS last year.
You need to be prepared for just about anything while on the road. I pack all this stuff into ONE tupperware container and store it under the back seat. I can still get to it from the front seat, but it’s not taking up any valuable leg room. One must for me is a ziploc full of dryer sheets. If you have to do the fast food stop, after you toss the evidence, pull out a sheet from the bag and place it under a seat. This way you won’t smell fries for the next two hours.
What’s in the Emergency Tub?
–For motion sickness – change of clothes, a sealable bag for the soiled ones clothes, towels, anti-bac wipes, sea bands, dramammine for kids.
–Med/hygeine – children’s pain reliever, children’s Benadryl, sunblock, neosporin, children’s pep to, eye drops, hydrocortisone cream
–911 – BandAids, tweezers, scissors, guaze, cough drops, triple anitbiotic ointment, instant cold compress, latex gloves
-Miscellaneous items – plastic bags, sanitizing wipes, tissues, baby wipes, sanitizer, chapstick, lotion, SPF, bug spray, wet ones, shout wipes, dryer sheets to freshen the car, aquaphor, wisps, baby lotion
Trash can from tupperwear with a bag in it and one below so you still have a liner once you throw out the first load.
-Behavior clips -I decorated these clothespins with stuff I had on hand and the first letter of each kid’s name. Good behavior means the clip stays up and they get a treat at the next stop. Bad behavior means the clip comes down. If they are up that person get’s a treat at the next stop!
–Road trip divider – for when they need time alone or for when one wants to sleep or for when they say things like, “She’s looking at me! She’s breathing my air!”.
It’s a pillow case that I attached self-adhesing velcro to and the other side to the top of the car. The adhesive does not ruin the interior or car when removed. This is great for them to play with their Old Fashioned Telephones.
–Car Mile Marker – I printed off a coloring page of our exact car from here. My husband colored it to match our truck. I punched two holes in it and strung ribbon through the holes and tied the ends to the hooks on either side of the back seat.
Mark each hour or 100 miles (or whatever marker works) for you in black on the ribbon. Then slide the car to the next milestone. This will help the kids answer their own questions.
I love to have a ton of regular CDs on hand for we are out of radio, Pandora, or XM Sirius range and for when my phone needs a break. Our newest favorite CD came from my dad. It’s an off-beat folk/country group called Trout Fishing in America. The album we love is “I’m gonna be in big trouble”. It has songs about dinosaurs, monsters, bears, and all other boys stuff. The kids really love it. Our old standbys are Raffi and of course the Frozen soundtrack. We always like to listen Pandora Disney Channel when we get reception. Books on CD are another great way to pass the time. It’s especially nice if there is an actual book with the CD for the kids to look at too.
I had the super fabulous Melissa Cabral from Good Day Sacramento over today to talk about about this topic.