Thursday, December 29, 2011

Road Trip with Two Kids

Later this morning we will be heading on a roadtrip to spend a few days with my in-laws. It's only a 3 to 5 hour drive, but with two kids under two, and a mommy who gets carsick, it has the potential to seem like an eternity. However, in an effort to stay positive, i'm doing as much as possible to ensure  that the ride is as smooth as it can be.

To start, i'll be doing the driving. I actually became the driver when Stephanie was a baby and I discovered that turning around to entertain her made me nauseous. So Dan sits in the passenger seat and is on "entertain the children" duty. As a bonus, he gets to nap if they do.

I also stocked two bags that we will keep up front with us. One contains snacks. (Earth's Best yogurt & fruit pouches, 100 calorie packs of craisins, a snack trap filled with goldfish, and water.) These are available to pass out anytime Stephanie gets whiny. They're fairly healthyish, so I don't mind if she fills up on them today instead of eating balanced meals. The second bag contains car toys. I plucked a few of her new presents from her big Christmas gifts pile, and stuck them in the bag. This way, she's only seen with them when she first opened them, so she'll get to play with them for the first time. The toys include a book/maga doodle combo, a LeapFrog Talk & Text, and some books. As an aside, we don't have a portable DVD player. The lack of such a device is a major source of debate in our house. I am all for it, because it will keep the kids quiet and our sanity intact during these trips. Dan is against it, saying he wants our kids to read in the car, and besides, he never had one growing up. My response to this is a) our kids can't read yet, and for all we know reading will make them carsick and b) he never had to travel 3-5 hours several times a year just to see his Grandparents. I think i'll eventually win this one, especially now that he has to be the entertainer of two children.

We always make sure to stop frequently along the way. If Stephanie is napping, I keep going as long as possible. But if she's awake, we stop at several rest stops so she can stretch her legs and run around for a little while. Sometimes this back fires on us, since she fights getting back in the car. But in the long run, those few minutes of getting-back-in-the-car tantrums are worth it for her to get out of the car and stretch.

Lastly, I try to leave at the perfect time. Today that will (hopefully) be right after Joseph has had a bottle and Stephanie has had breakfast. I want her to be up long enough where it doesn't seem like she goes from crib to high chair to car, but not so long that she's started to get tired and cranky. We're also leaving late enough to not run into morning commuter traffic and early enough to not hit afternoon commuter traffic. Of course, all of this is contingent on the total and complete cooperation of two we'll see what happens. I'm optimistic though! And I'll be sure to update you all on how our trip went.

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