Welcome to the #RoadTripSimply section of Simply St. Augustine, where I share Road Trip Tips and ideas! If you’re headed to St. Augustine, head back to my home page for how to enjoy St. Augustine like a local. This post contains affiliate links- read my disclosure to learn why.
If you’re traveling with kids, you’ve probably learned the art of packing a Bag of tricks. As a mamma of 7, I’ve had years… and years… and years to develop a Mary Poppins type bag of surprises! I’ve been grateful for my stash many times like when we were:
- Stuck In Traffic There was this one time where were stuck for 4 hours on a mountain road- we parked the car and played games on the interstate and had a mountain view picnic with a neighboring car full of kids. It was a good thing we had extra PB&J in the trunk!
- Rest Area Stop You need the kids to do more than hit the restrooms… you need them to get their wiggles out! But all of a sudden they’re tiiiiiirrreeeeed or booooorrrreeddddd. Pull out the frisbee or grab a ball to jump-start some fun!
- Rainy Day Plan B No one wants rain on their vacation… but you don’t get to plan the weather! Be prepared with tips below.
- Long Lines can be a joy killer with littles. Pick a few of the items in my bag-o-tricks below to stash in your purse!
- Airport Layovers or Delayed Flights etc, etc, etc… you get the picture
I see the “road trip bag of tricks” as much about training mamma’s heart to choose joy in otherwise stressful moments as it is a way to make a memory and shape our kids to find the silver lining. Like James 1:2-3 says, “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.” Don’t we want our kiddos to grow into steady, reliable adults who are joyful and confident? This is one tool in my mamma toolbelt to accomplish that. 🙂
What to put in your Mamma’s Bag-o-Tricks
Here’s a crazy-long list of ideas… you pick what fits your family and your vacation needs. I usually keep a few of these in the car and a few in my diaper bag and a few in a bag of things to do on vacation.
- Spot It is a great, compact game that all ages can play together anywhere. We have the pool version because the cards are plastic and therefore a bit more sturdy.
- Bubbles have a way of making everybody smile. Once little Wesley starts chasing them, even the grumpiest kid seems to forget they’re supposed to be making everyone miserable as they all join in the bubble-popping silliness. I buy the Gazillion Bubbles brand or similar because they don’t leak in the diaper bag.
- Deck of Cards offers a seemingly endless supply of games. From War to Speed to Slap Jack to Spoons to Rummy or Up The River Down The River, you can tailor the game to all ages and a new game is just a google search away!
- Lollipops because I’m not above bribing. These healthy lollipops are made with fruit juice instead of high fructose corn syrup so I don’t feel quite as bad giving them out when ears are popping or the road gets a little too long.
- Dig out a sheet or blanket and build a fort if you’re stuck inside on a rainy day. Hotels are always willing to give an extra sheet if you ask nicely!
- Sidewalk Chalk works at rest areas on sidewalks, in lookout parking lots and on paper bags in the car. Hey, desperate times = desperate measures!
- Snacks – I have whole post about road trip snacks. Read it. Go ahead! It’ll be helpful.
- Balls like this oball for babies and small playground balls for bigger kids are little enough to squeeze in the fullest car but are a life saver when you need a quick game that requires no brain work! Toss, kick, dodge or catch!
- A great book to read aloud is an oft overlooked prize in my mammas bag of tricks. Cheaper by the Dozen is good for any age – we quote it all the time and laugh together. Any shared read aloud creates your own family culture… unless it’s a snoozer.
- Frisbee = fun if your kids are big enough to throw it. They don’t have to be big enough to catch it! Remember, the goal is to get moving.
- Search “Travel Games” and play a new one (I Spy, License Plate Game, etc)