Here it goes…Reagan and I are setting off on our own road trip today without Daddy! Someone help me now. If you see a woman on US Highway 50 bound for South Lake Tahoe today and she is balling her eyes out on the side of the road you’ll know you found me. With Brian still shacked up in bed trying to get rid of his sickness, Rey and I are headed up the hill solo. It’s our very large family’s reunion this weekend and we haven’t gone in eight years. Primarily due to the fact that we were living in Pennsylvania for the past six of those years. We made a commitment this year and we are going.
So my dilemma ~ How do you keep a one year old entertained in the back of a moving vehicle for the next two hours? Normally Brian or I would sit in back with her and keep her entertained but since Brian isn’t going…now what?
I stumbled upon another mommy blog this morning that a friend had posted onto Pinterest (Man, I love that site!) When all else fails just check Pinterest and you’ll have dinner mapped out, a new art project to do, nails to paint, a new outfit to go buy, simple fix its for around the house and much much more. Anyways, back to my dilemma. This mommy blog listed several creative ways to keep your child entertained on a road trip.
The reason I am stressing about it is because I don’t want to simply throw another Elmo DVD into the player and let her watch a video for the next two hours straight. I would rather she put the time to good use and “read” a new book, draw, sing to me, yell at me…whatever, just not watch tv. So here is my list of what tactics I’m going to employ for keeping Reagan happy in the car:
- Dollar Store Surprise ~ I thought this was incredibly clever! Go to the dollar store and purchase a few fun items for your kids. It could be a small pack of crayons, a whistle (no wait a minute, scratch that-what am I thinking?) stickers, a large piece puzzle, a doll or action figure, you name it there is so much stuff at the dollar store and well, it’s a dollar! The best part of this is wrap them up individually and then at regular intervals hand them out for a surprise! Not only will it keep them engaged but it’s fun for them too!
- I Spy ~ What kid doesn’t love to play I Spy? Ok so Reagan may be a bit young but I think she is ready. Right now she knows where the horses are that live around the corner from us and every time we drive past she says “babies” so I’m pretty sure she can spot a tree, a bird, and other objects she is learning about.
- Sing Me the Alphabet ~ It is the time when Rey is really getting to know her ABC’s and she is so proud of herself when she sings the alphabet song. So we can sing it together.
- Let’s learn Colors ~ As of yet she hasn’t really started to understand colors and realize that her eyes are blue, the grass is green, the couch is brown, her shirt is pink and so on. If we ask her what color her eyes are she will tell us they are blue but when you ask her to pick up the blue block she will try out the yellow or green one first. Am I getting ahead of myself here? What is the age they start learning this stuff? Maybe because she is advanced for her age I’m expecting her to know this but in reality she won’t really learn it for a while. Well, I’m going to try, it’ll kill fifteen minutes of our journey right?
- Fun Music ~ Rey has become quite the little music lover. Right now her favorite song is Tonight is the Night by Outasight and every time it comes on she dances in her seat and starts whooping to the music and singing along. It’s the funniest thing I ever seen so we are definitely going to use that!
- Nap Time ~ I figure if I get on the road shortly before her nap time she can sleep in the car. We’ve used this tactic before when we headed to my parents for the weekend and it is a smashing success.
- DVD Player ~ Of course if all else fails and she is simply not having any of my mind games there is always Elmo! I am very happy at times my husband decided we had to have a DVD player as a must in my SUV purchase.
That’s my list thus far. If anyone has additional suggestions I am all ears because as we all know trying to plan anything with a toddler can be difficult especially if they decide they aren’t on your wavelength for the day!