Saturday, December 31, 2011

Short trips with large families. What I am doing wrong.

My family and I traveled to Wyoming to visit the old prison. We'd heard about it a few years ago and really wanted to take a tour. It's supposed to be really hanuted. It definitely felt creepy. My baby was fine until we entered the "death row" building and then he wanted nothing to do with that building.

My older kids also wanted to go back to Martin's Cove. Knowing that Martins Cove would be blustery and cold I decided to stay at the hotel room and edit a MS that needed to be done. With the little kids that had snotty noses from a recent cold.

Every time I do short trips I sit in the car on the way home and make a mental list of things that could have been done easier faster etc. This time I actually wrote the list down.

So since you're my captive audience I thought I'd share.

First, I need to have a "travel box" IE hard sided rubbermaid box allready stocked with paper plates, cups, plastic silverware, paper towels, disposable tablecloths and other things like this. But it needs to be bigger than that or I need two one for the paper products and one for foodand snacks that we are taking on the road. We almost left the jar of peanut butter at Flaming Gorge because it fell out and rolled under the truck.

Garbage bags for the car and hotel room. For accidents, for dirty clothes, for garbage.

Hard sided cooler, the soft sided coolers leak after a few hours.

Seperate fish cooler so the cold food doesnt smell and taste like fish.

Take at least 2-3 more sets of clothes for the little kids than you think you'll need.

Blankets or towels in the car for spills and accidents. On floor or in carseats.

Laundry soap and quarters. Dish soap if you are using non disposable sippy cups.

Individual boxes that fit under my seats for individual kids stuff so it doesnt get lost in 12 pass van.

Laminated packing list in each kids bag and in the travel box(s)

Laminated list of food that we can grab or buy as we leave. (inc allergy list) IE maybe have some bread and tortillas frozen and hidden so we can just take off and let them thaw.

Make sure we have a master list so things like the babys porta bed doesnt get left at home. Inc, where the stuff is stored at home.

Now before you think that this trip was a disaster it wasn't. The 14 yo did leave the porta crib at home but the hotel had one we could borrow.

Things we did right.

I on a whim grabbed two extra pants and underwear for the preeschooler incase of accients.

I also brought a bag of toys for the one year old knowing we'd be in the hotel room all day. MAJOR RIGHT THING TO DO!!!

Most kids brought blankets sleeping bags and pillows for the pull out beds.

Being so cold I brought extra coats and jackets for the little ones. I also brought a little cooler so i could travel with milk and other things for the baby.

I took my little baggie of medicines fo the kids tylenol, motrin, benadryl, dramimine etc.

we have the food for traveling worked out and that went over mostly well except the ever changing picky one year old. But were still working on that.

Pack water bottles. Kids get tired of juice and pop and it can actually dehydrate them. Cups of water while cheaper get spilled.

Little styrofoam cups are great to fill with crackers and chips and pass out.

Bring both salty and sweet treats they will get tired of just one type.

Make kids bring some things to entertain themselves on the trip.

The best part of the trip besides seeing the haunted prison was getting my edit finished. (Mental note, hotel is nice place to work on writing. As long as kids arent watching Tom and Jerry.)

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