We are a military family so traveling for us is not out of the ordinary. We travel for many different reasons but our most recent travels were for fun. I packed up my three kiddos and headed to Minnesota for a few weeks. Traveling can be daunting for someone who doesn't do it often so I am going to give you my top 5 tips for traveling with littles!
1. Driving? Bring a potty chair and TP in the car.
This is something I usually do without thinking. Heading in the car for more that 3 hours? Where is the potty chair? However, this last trip I thought we could get away without it and boy let me tell you that was a mistake! There were multiple times when their requests for a potty break were an emergency and we were literally surrounded by nothing but fields - no exits, no gas stations - so I pulled over and held them in a squat while they pooped on the side of I-24. Next time I will be following my own advice and bring the potty chair and a roll of TP!
2. Snacks, snacks, and more snacks!
I don't know about your kids but mine want to eat when they're bored. Not many road trips ago I decided I was tired of junk food on our trips and since then I have tested a few different car snack options. First I tried giving them their own lunch boxes filled with snacks and told them they could eat them whenever they wanted but when they were gone they were out of luck. Let me save you the trouble - that was a disaster. Next I tried to only allow snacks at specific times to avoid them continually asking - welp another disaster filled with lots of "but I'm hungry nows". So finally, I decided to just pack lots of healthy treats - cut up fruit and veggies, sandwiches, gold fish and granola bars and just passed them out when asked for. This way they could have something whenever they wanted, we never stopped at fast food, and everyone was happy!
I know, I know this is a no brainer right; but, something you might not have considered is loading the devices up with movies, shows, podcasts, and activities that your kids have never seen before. This will keep them excited and interested in doing new things with their devices for longer.
4. Space out activities!
Whether you are on an airplane or in a car, your kids will be looking at you to keep them entertained. I like to have a special bag filled with new toys, games, or coloring books and hand them out sporadically throughout the trip.
5. Utilize car games from your youth
When I was growing up we would play games as a family in the car - the alphabet game, I spy, slug bug, etc. When my own kiddos start getting bored I like to throw out a group car game that will get them all involved and looking out the windows. This has been known to backfire when my middle baby feels like she can't compete with my oldest but if you keep it light and fun hopefully you can avoid sibling drama.
Ok so there you have it my 5 tips for family travel! Once you get where you are going I highly recommend searching out a local photographer and getting a family session in at your new location! If you want to read more about my reasoning behind that check out my blog here.