Road Trip, Road Trip!!

Updated on August 16, 2011
S.T. asks from Liberty, MO
7 answers

so, we leave very early friday morning to go visit my family back home in Indiana, it is roughly an 8 hour drive from where we are in Missouri. We have 3 sons, Ian is 2 1/2 and the twins are 8 months old. My dilema is this, to make more room in the van to take all the stuff we'll have to pack (half the house it seems), my husband took out the middle row and moved the back row up and somehow, by the grace of God, managed to get all 3 carseats on the same bench. He took the van to the fire department and they helped him re-install them to make sure they were secure and it was okay. So now, my 2 1/2 year olds carseat is in the middle and the twins are on each side of him, so if he is playing with something he has to keep it on his lap, no room to set anything next to him, we even had to move his armrests up so they would fit. How in the world is he going to stay entertained for an 8 hour+ car ride??? we do not have a portable dvd player, nor the means to buy one...even if we did there is no place to put it, our van is from 1997.....what kind of things have ya'll done to keep your toddlers entertained and happy during the roadtrip? we'll make more frequent stops obviously....any suggestions??? stories???? prayers???LOL

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So What Happened?

thanks for all the great suggestions!!! i told hubby about the idea for the small electronic game, he loves pushing buttons and all that so i think we'll get him 1 or 2 of those. on the way out we have to leave in the morning right after my husband gets home from his overnight job. on the way back home though we are leaving at night so the kids will sleep. ya'll are great, thanks again!

More Answers



answers from Dallas on

A car lap tray may help. We have one similar to this. It's soft, so it shouldn't cause injury in an accident. You can't color on it. But it is FANTASTIC for holding little cars and toys. It keeps them from rolling off or getting dropped. Ours does not have the storage on the side. But if it fits, it may be a solution. We got ours at Target, but I haven't seen them there in a while. A friend found one at babies r us. I have taken quite a few long car rides (15 hours or more) with the kids. A few trips I have done solo. The best trick (that a mama on here gave me) was to stock up on toys and trinkets at the dollar store. Don't let the kids see or know you have these. When they start getting bored or have something new to hold their attention. It may only get played with for a few minutes, but it'll be a life saver, I promise. Many a fit has been staved off with junk for the Dollar tree in our car. You'll just have to make sure that everything is ok for all kiddos to play with, since it sounds like the wee ones will be within grabbing distance of big brother. Walmart has little hand held games for $1. Soccer, baseball, skate boarding. If your two year old is like my kids, he won't care that he has no clue how to play, he'll just like pushing the buttons. Magna doodles or aqua doodles are great for traveling too. Finger puppets are great. ANd as bad as it may sound to some, snacks are definitely entertainment on the road. I stocked up on things like string cheese, grapes, snack crackers, etc. Have everything portioned out ahead of time. You'll have to be careful of the food you choose with the babies being in such close proximity to your older child. PLay books on tape or kiddie music. If you don't have anything, hit up your local library. Bring a ball. Give the kids time to run, even if it's just five minutes. We take four and five hour trips regularly and often just leave with very little entertainment. It hasn't been a big deal. Eight hours is not a daunting as it seems. Have a safe trip! Good luck!

3 moms found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

Anyone you know have an iPod touch they'd let you borrow? Or an old iPhone they're not using anymore? If so, you can load up a couple of his favorite movies on there and that will keep him entertained forever. (At least, with my kids it always did!) You would need some headphones for him - since he's so young, probably the kind that go over his head and sit outside his ears would be best. Load up some Angry Birds on there, maybe a kids' album of music he likes, and let him go at it.

My only other suggestion is to try and plan the trip for when he's likely to sleep (naptime, bedtime, etc).

Good luck!! I hope your trip is quick and uneventful!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Medford on

Get some small cars, toys, books, and snacks. Check out a kids thrift store for any small electronical toys, like leappad laptop. its small, has buttons to push and sings and talks cute. Id loan you mine but Im in Ca. Be sure to stop every couple hours and let him run like crazy. drink water, change his pants or use the potty, and then snack, and go again. Have fun!

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answers from San Francisco on

Leave as early as you possibly can, like 4 am, so the kids will (mostly) sleep. Good luck :)

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Kansas City on

When my girls were little we would travel a lot to visit family that didn't live close. We found it was easier to travel at night. We would leave late in the evening and have them in their jammies. We would only stop if necessary since they were sleeping. If we needed to swith drivers, we did so really fast. Usually if they awoke, they went back to sleep quite fast. They were similar in age as your little ones are now. When we arrived at our destination, family would watch them a few hours while we slept (if we switched drivers...usually my hubby drove and I slept in the car also). Don't know if this will help you, but you may want to try it. We did this until our girls were in 3 or 4th grade...and we didn't have a DVD player either. HOpe this helps. Good luck and God Bless.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

Honestly my son was entertained by straws and lids to drinks more than other forms of entertainment on our last road trip (which was 2 days and 12 hours). About to make that trip again. He will have a couple of books which will probably end up on the floor, he likes the little travel handheld games even though he doesn't know how to play them and I found this "liquid motion" office desk thingy that I'm going to surprise him with. He really doesn't need much to be entertained. He mostly just wanted to talk or sleep haha

Here's what I'm talking about (liquid motion toy) and the price is great:

Have fun on your trip!!!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

I would definitely make a few stops. It is good for everyone, especially babies (and you!!) to get out and move around a bit after a couple hours. Maybe drive for 3 hours then take a break, get lunch, walk around, then go again.

1 mom found this helpful
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