i was honored to be a part of mique’s funner in the summer series again this summer, and i’m being lazy and reposting what i did for her here:
this summer i have decided to take a small step back from work and schooling to just have fun with my family! one thing that has really helped us to do that is to make a summer list, as inspired by meg of whatever.
one item on our checklist was to take a road trip to wyoming to visit yellowstone. for us, that meant crossing over 5 states, spending hours upon hours in the car. thankfully, my kids are pretty good travelers, but even so, i knew i had to be prepared for such a long trip.
like any good mom, i thought about what my mom did in this type of situation! when we were younger she made organizers on the back of the seats out of old beach towels, outfitted with pockets to store our paper, books, and crayons (those were the days before dvd players and all sorts of handheld devices. the only handheld device i owned was an etch-a-sketch!). so i grabbed a couple of old towels, stitched up the sides, added some pockets and voila! seat organizers!
(please forgive the terrible iphone pictures! i can’t seem to find my camera battery.)
i made 3 rows of pockets. the top row had 3 pockets with pleats in them so they could fit the pencil boxes. each pencil box held small items like pens/pencils/crayons/markers, legos, polly pockets, and littlest pet shop toys. the second row had 2 large pockets that held pads of paper, coloring books, sticker books, and workbooks. the bottom pocket was just one large pocket made by folding up the bottom of the towel and stitching up the sides. in that was a vintage metal tray so that the kids had a space to work and eat on.
other things i found really helpful for our trip:
– a big bag o’ candy. this was for the kids and the grown ups! every once in a while a treat makes a nice distraction to the long drive.
– a big bag o’ wipes. i filled up a large ziplock bag with baby wipes and stored them in the center console. they came in handy for spills, after meal messes, and dirty hands after hikes.
– a dvd player and dvd’s. ok, i am not a huge fan of watching movies in the car. for the most part, i feel like my kids should be able to entertain themselves in the car, like we did as kids! but on such a long drive, i think the dvd player was more for me than the kids! we were able to get an inexpensive player with 2 screens from walmart and we grabbed a handful of dvd’s we hadn’t seen in awhile. when the kids were getting stir crazy in the car we would pop in a movie and enjoy the silence. the only noises out of them were giggles!
– books on tape. a friend lent us the chronicles of narnia on cd and it was awesome! sean and i read them together years ago, but it was a first time for our kids to hear them. our older kids loved them and our youngest fell asleep every time we put in the cd’s – bonus!
– refillable water bottles. we brought a couple of sean’s biking water bottles and refilled them with ice and water at every gas station we stopped at. nice cold free water!
– snacks. we also had a bag of snacks that we refilled each day of the trip, and also got special snacks at some of our stops, like carmel corn. after all, we were on vacation!
– blankets. each kid also brought their special blankets from home. its nice to have something comforting to remind you of home, but also for snuggling on the late night drives and for hanging over the window to block out the heat of the day.
i so hope that my tips can help you enjoy a road trip this summer! happy trails!