Anyone up for a road trip? Piling the kids in the car for the trip to Grandma and Grandpa’s doesn’t have to be a 2-aspirin adventure.  John and Kendra Smiley are here to help.

  • Preparation and planning can go a long way to make a road trip pleasant.  Now is the time to determine the age-appropriate “entertainment” for the trip.
  • Obviously there are iPods, iPads, DVD players, and Smart phones capable of entertaining passengers.  There is nothing wrong with those devices.  But there are more possibilities. How about unplugging for at least a portion of the trip?
  • Here’s one suggestion for entertaining younger kids. Take a man’s shirt, button it, and sew the hem shut.  Place the shirt on a hanger to hang it on the hook by the child’s car seat. Place a cookie sheet in the shirt. The cookie sheet provides a “desk” for drawing or coloring, and a place to play with magnets.  Buy an assortment of things from the dollar store and wrap them individually.  Award these surprises every hour or so.
  • Older kids want to be entertained too. It will be a little more difficult to separate them from the electronic devices in their lives. Because of that, you need to be engaged in the entertainment.  Give it a try.  It could be fun for both you and for the kids.
  • Play the typical car games. For ideas just ask yourself –  What did I play when I was young?  How about the license plate game?  How many different states can you find?  How about teaching your kids songs from your past?  Retro is very “in.”
  • Our encouragement to the parents of today is this:  Take the time to unplug from the electronic world and plug into your family.  Talk with one another.  Play games in the car.  Sing together.  Connecting on a road trip might make a positive difference in your family relationships.

How have you entertained the kids on a road trip?


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