Welcome! I am a mom to two wonderful kids, a lovely retired greyhound, and a wife to a great husband. Needless to say, there are a lot of daily messes to clean up around our house. Daily Messes is my blog to share ideas on things to do with your kids, snack and meal ideas, crafts, and holiday fun. I hope you find something to enjoy!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

A Three (and a half) Hour Car Trip

If you've read my Traveling With Kids post, you know that car rides are not the easiest for us. We recently attended an out of town wedding. It wasn't too far, about 3 1/2 hours in the car. We had never been to this city before and wanted to grab the opportunity to make it a fun trip, a mini vacation for us. We thought the boys were older and that we had learned a lot from previous car rides to be fully packed and prepared for this car trip.

We packed up a toy bag with the boys' favorite toys and books, a snack bag, the portable DVD player and all of the kids DVD's (even the ones I can't stand to listen to). We packed a large variety of snacks (apples, strawberry slices, pretzels, crackers, candy) in snack size bags. That way the boys each had their own bag so there wasn't any fighting over sharing or whose bag was bigger. I put in a DVD they hadn't seen in awhile (mostly because I find it annoying to listen to) and we were off. Everything should be perfect and make for an easy trip, right? Bernardo was content to munch on a few snacks and watch a show. Higgins was ok for about 40 minutes, and then it started.

At 4:55 pm, the first "Are we there yet?" was spoken. 5:15 pm, "Will we be there soon?". 6:18 pm, 6:22 pm, 6:32 pm marked more "Are we there yet?" questions. 6:44 pm, "I'm getting tired and my butt's getting sore." 6:47 pm, "I'm getting tired.". However, Higgins also refused to close his eyes to rest or nap. We stopped around 7 pm to get gas, walk around, and use the bathroom. The boys got a snack and we got caffeine before getting back in the car. 7:38 pm, "Are we there yet?". We arrived at the hotel around 8 pm.
The best gas station family bathroom I've seen.
The next day, we took the boys to a Science Museum. It was a little above their ages (more for kids around 10 years and older), but they still had fun. The center had lots of experiment type of exhibits. There was a station to create your own art work with a machine (remember the Spirograph toy when we were kids?), which I think I enjoyed more than they did.
The museum also had some Poison Dart Frogs, as well as a few other varieties on exhibit. The boys were super excited to see the frogs, I think mostly due to the Pocket Frogs game on the iPad (a cute free app where you feed and take care of frogs). The staff had just fed the dart frogs tiny crickets, so the boys got to watch the frogs eat. The crickets look white because the center covers them in a calcium powder for the frogs. The frog we watched the most would move his toes before pouncing and eating a cricket.
If you have to go to an out of town wedding, reunion, or other type of event, look at the location beforehand. There might be something there to make a mini vacation out of the trip. Our mini vacation was fun, complete with seeing a new city, watching bridges, dancing at the wedding, swimming at the hotel, and going to the science museum. The boys had a great time, although Hubby stated that going to a science museum with kids their age "makes me hate science." He's an engineer.

Other related posts you might enjoy:
Traveling with Kids
Car Ride Scavenger Hunt
Car Bingo
The Snack Box
Vacation Time Tips
Picture Phone Cards For Kids

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