Summer is just around the corner. Yay for beach days and frozen drinks! Boo for 104 days of bored children. Our go-to for long summer days filled with whining kids is often a road trip. Be it a day, or a week, road trips with your kids can be fun. A successful road trip with your kids is 88% distraction, 10% refereeing, and 2% good music.
Quick Tips To Stay Sane On A Road Trip With Kids:
Electronics. The more kids you have, the more electronics you need because passing one around quickly turns you into a referee. Tablets and smartphones are a godsend when you need to suck up hours of your kids’ time without them noticing the outside world.
Games. My kids play Mario Bros., Minecraft and Roblox, so they join each other and play together. Anything they do together will ultimately turn you into a referee. “He wrecked my house,” “She teleported me,” and whatever other insane things they can do to each other in a universe made only of squares. Despite the ridiculous complaints, video games will keep them occupied until a tablet dies. Pro Tip: Bring multiple car-friendly chargers.
Non-electronic games. Depending on your kids’ ages, you can play traditional road trip games. There’s I-Spy, the license plate game, and if all else fails, the Silent Game (which will inevitably lead to fighting). Books and movies are a good fall back, again, depending on their age.
Music. I let the kids pick a playlist, each kid gets to picks a song, then we start again. They have to listen patiently (and relatively quietly) to their siblings’ songs to hear their own. This won’t work for a 14- hour car ride, but I’ve definitely gotten at least 2 hours of peace with this.
Bring A Babysitter
This might sound ridiculous, but if you’ve got a sitter you trust and don’t mind spending that many hours with them, bring them along. Your kids might be more inclined to let you enjoy the sights if they’ve got someone to play with. Don’t have a babysitter? Find one online who is in your area. Make sure to check references and run a background check before packing up with a stranger.
The truth is there’s no real way to ensure total harmony during a road trip with kids (or adults for that matter), but these tips can help. Don’t forget the sunscreen!
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