After the 6 hr drive home from Connecticut I definitely have a few travel tips to anyone who has no choice but to be restrained in close travel quarters with a toddler.
1- Be organized. I packed Sam her own tote bag which was always within arms reach. It contained snacks, juice boxes, a few new toys & DVDs.
Next to that was my own tote since I tend to get ancy on long car rides too. It was nice to not have my stuff mixed in with hers, when one of us was in desperate need of relief it was found with minimal digging. (most of the time, I still have no idea what happened to my tootsie rolls.)
2-Buy a portable DVD player if your car doesn’t already have one. And if your car does have them but you fly a lot it might be worth buying a portable one anyway. Ours has two adjustable straps on the back so it can attach to the headrest on our car, grandma’s or the rental…I’ve even rigged it onto the back of the tray table on the plane. Basically wherever Sam is, it is. Here’s the DVD playerwe bought on Amazon. (although we found it at Target)
And no, I don’t think I’m a bad mommy AT ALL for letting her turn into a zombie baby & watch TV in the car or plane. I thinks it’s a lot worse for her & me to both be super stressed out & pissy from the long trip.
3- Music assortment in the door, ready to go. I don’t know if all kids are like this but mine stops crying in the car 90% of the time when we put on one of her CDs. Especially Laurie Berkner’s Buzz Buzz.She can’t resist. This year we also got Silly Songs With Larrywhich she likes but more importantly it’s actually entertaining for Mommy & Daddy. And although I said it was for her I got the Disney Princess: The Ultimate Song CollectionCD because I can’t help it, I still think I’m one deep down and know every single word to every single song & will sing them unabashedly loud much to the dismay of my fellow passengers.
For me my sanity was well preserved by finishing up some old projects that had been sitting around forever just begging for 1 more hour of TLC. I started these mittens from the Stitch ‘N Bitchbook on Thanksgiving TWO YEARS AGO. Then I got pregnant with Sam & even though they only needed a bit more on the left hand they were buried in the pile of misfit projects. Until now that is, this winter I’ll finally have my cozy wool mitts!
4- Let the kid chip in. We took a break & let Sam take a shift at the wheel. And although I appreciate her willingness to help she drives angry & it’s a little uncomfortable.
In the end let me say this year in comparison to last was a great success. The crying was somewhat minimal, traffic was bad but not AS bad & in the end I have only one thing to say.
I’ve put it in a letter.
Dear Laurie Berkner,
My daughter Samantha loves you. I do not.
She stops crying when we put on your Buzz Buzz CD. Your songs haunt my dreams.
Love, Samster Mommy