Do kids and road trips sound like fun?
hints and tips on how to avoid a motorway melt down
I don’t know why but some little ones scream every time they get in the car.
Perhaps it is because they are uncomfortable? If this might be the case it helps to get them a comfy cushion to make sure their head and neck are comfortable, even if they fall asleep. We love the Baby Elephant Ears, especially as they come with a matching bib for catching dribbles!
Or perhaps it’s because they get bored? Here’s where having some handy toys to play with and keep them busy can help. Electronic tablets can also help if fully charged and loaded with a movie, age appropriate game or some music. It’s a good idea to have one for each pair of hands that wants them, separate over ear head phones – we love these ones from JVC, which are durable but not too precious. But beware, too much time travelling with your head in a tablet can lead to car sickness!
I remember as a kid having car sickness every time I went to my Nan’s. About an hour into the drive I would feel unwell, my Mum would tell me to to be quiet and hang my head out of the car and nine times out of ten we would have to stop to clean me up. Cars these days are so much better at making sure you don’t get static but still car sickness can occur. Sucking boiled sweets can help, as well as avoiding eating too much before you get into the the car.
Make sure you have a pack of tissues and also some wipes – you don’t need to have a child in nappies for these to be handy – they clean up and sanitise anything!
Have a couple of spare plastic bags in the car, within easy reach of the front and back seats. These can be great emergency sick bags. You can use these to collect the rubbish that builds up as you eat your snacks, finish your drinks or break toys and makes it easy to take your rubbish with you. DON”T chuck it out of the window – littering our motorways and roads just shows how little we care for our environment and those animals that live on our road sides. It always astounds and upsets me to see the amount of litter in the trees and ditches on our motorways. It’s not as if we are going to have big clean up days like we do for our beaches
If you have a sat nav set your ultimate destination as a favourite – that way each time you turn off the car you can automatically reload the directions. It also helps if you are staying there for a little while or using it as a base when you are travelling around because that way, where ever you go on that trip, you can get back to base easily as it’s already in your satnav!
And have Google maps or similar on standby, sometimes travel information or the need to find the nearest service station/loo/coffee shop can be quite immediate but you just can’t find the way to find it on your sat nav – but for Google maps – ta dah! use find my nearest..
Changing a dirty nappy on the road is a challenge. You may be sitting in the back with baby but doing it while the car is travelling is very risky so pull over as soon as you can to avoid a screaming baby and nappy rash! This is where having a spare set of clothes, a spare pack of nappies in the back of the car and multiple packs of wipes and a god hand disinfectant work wonders. I love these Kushies changing mats that can be easily washed, or you could use your Bundlebean as a makeshift mat if you need to!
Wee time – If your little one is potty trained then travel potties like the Potette, are brilliant and save the day on the motorway – as soon as they say they need to go you can pull over (safely, and make sure you leave your hazards on!) and they can go, whatever they need to do. And you can just tie up the baggie, put a fresh one in place for the next time, and get on your way. Again – take the bag with you! Don’t leave it as litter on the roadside, leave it in a bin at your next comfort break.
Snacks and drinks
Make sure you pack some snacks and drinks. It is important to keep hydrated on the road, but I don’t recommend you take sugary drinks – they can make a real mess if they are spilt and they can lead straight back to car sickness! Depending on the time of year depends on what treats you take. We always take along some fruit, which usually comes in it’s own packaging if you chose bananas, apples or easy peeler oranges. If it’s Christmas, Easter or near Halloween we take some of the extra sweets and treats that the kids have been given. If it’s the summer we take along some boiled sweets or play a game of sweetie roulette with a big bag of Revels.
One thing I have definitely learnt is that if you didn’t make any sandwiches before you left grab some cheese, a french stick and a pack of snacking cucumber. So long as you have a pen knife or a picnic knife with you then a roadside or traffic jam, picnic can also keep hunger at bay and stop the kids from complaining!
Easy road trip games can be road trip Bingo (you need to be organised before hand to play this!), Eye Spy – our family favourite or a memory game like Shopping List or similar. It keeps everyone talking to one another and can lead to lots and lots of laughs! So long as the driver keeps their eyes on the road your road trip should be fun and the kids will love it!