Inside: Summer is about family travel, including long car rides. Read on for tips on how to survive a summer road trip with a toddler.
Summertime is all about family time, whether you work full time or not. Most of us tend to take our families on a fun summer adventure to take advantage of the longer days and bright skies. But adventures usually include quite a bit of travel, and long car rides with children can get a bit overwhelming. Here are some tips for keeping car rides with toddlers fun and mess-free!
We do not live near any family so if we want to have even a weekend playdate with our in-laws, a bit of travel is required. I love for my son to get to chase his cousins around now that he is big enough to play with them, at least somewhat, and so we make our journey to see them when we can. But toddlers love to move, and being confined to a car seat isn’t fun for them. So we need to plan activities and snacks to quell the toddler tornado and make the road trip pleasant for all of us.
Thanks to the Babble Box full of goodies we received, we were ready with essentials for a successful trip. Our box included fun activities and snacks necessary to survive a summer road trip with a toddler.
Keep the Toddler from getting too Hungry or Thirsty
Keeping the toddler fed is an important rule! A hungry toddler is not a happy toddler. Period. Be ready with a packable snack.
Be sure to pack a few sippy cups full of water or even some juice boxes. Our goodie box came with these awesome Tree Top Applesauce Pouches in a variety of flavors.
These Tree Top Applesauce Pouches are a no-mess packable snack and are made with 100% USA apples from local orchards – I love that! There’s nothing artificial, so I know my kiddo is getting some great nutrients that he can snack on while we travel. No mess and no fuss. I just need to twist the top open and can hand him the pouch on the go.
Keep Toddlers happy on car rides with Fun Activities
Toddlers can’t sit still. True fact. It’s in their user guide! Keeping toddlers from getting bored is crucial on long drives. Our goodie box from Babble Box contained some fantastic fun books to help keep kids occupied on road trips.
Kids love to color, that’s also in their user guide. So a fun book and crayons in many gorgeous colors that are washable are a must!
Also, this book. You know I’m in love. How fun to read about our wonderful state and then point out some of these fun Texan things as we drive through it!
Pack your car so everything you need is close
I am a fan of having everything at hand. I like to reuse diaper boxes as on-the-go containers to store our toddler travel needs.
One box will have a diaper changing station where we can change the kiddo anywhere since not all restrooms have baby changing tables. I also create boxes full of easy to reach snacks and drink bottles (so they don’t spill and roll around all over the car floor).
Another container will be just for the dogs since they need provisions as well. I love the blanket travel idea from Mama by Fire – putting a blanket down under our dogs helps keep their fur out of our seats.
This post has an excellent collection of travel hacks, including a suction cup to the window for coloring items, so they don’t get dropped and lost. Now to just make sure the toddler places his crayons back in the cup instead of throwing them.
Plan frequent stops and breaks
Little kids have tons of energy. Unlike some of us more relaxed adult folk (ha!) they need to run around and stretch their muscles out. Planning some stops is not just for the necessary bathroom breaks (especially if the child is newly potty trained).
Allowing everyone to take a short walk around the rest stop is good for bringing fidgety energy down and letting the driver get a break, too. Plus, fresh air helps wake the driver up a bit and avoid a drowsy driving situation.
What other travel hacks do you have to share?
We recently went on a family hike adventure, dogs and all. Our travel survival pack got us to and from our destination with minimal whining.
A good little hike for little feet means a nice nap afterward.
The dogs got muddy and had to be hosed off, so we’re letting them air dry a bit.
Are you ready for your summer adventures?