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Over The River And Through The Woods With A Toddler

Harrison in his car seat.

This past weekend, Harrison and I took a little jaunt with my family down to South Carolina to do catch-up on Christmas with my brothers and ring in the new year.  My husband had a family emergency on his side, so I packed bags for the little guy and myself and we hitched a ride in the back of my parent’s Chrysler.

I have to admit that I was NERVOUS.  Like, NERVOUS ALL-CAPITAL-LETTERS-REQUIRED.  My child notoriously hates the car, but I don’t blame him since we are in it almost 3 hours per day due to our (insane!) commute.  He screams. He kicks. He refuses to be consoled and there’s not much I can do when I am driving.

But this trip was a success! and I would love to share what helped make my car-hating toddler a (temporary) road-warrior:

  • Travel at night.  We put the kid in pajamas and left at bedtime so he could nod off.
  • Bring blanket and lovies.  I snagged the Lightning McQueen fleece right off his bed so he could snuggle it in the car seat.
  • Snacks and non-spill sippy cups are key.
  • Bring a few super-duper treats. I brought DumDum lollipops so the moment he started feeling antsy, I handed him a super special treat that kept him happy and occupied for another 20 minutes.
  • DVD player.  For a 5+ hour trip, this gave us over an hour of quiet, happy toddler watching Curious George.
  • Pick up a few (small) new toys and pull them out at intervals.
  • Pull over and let him stretch. At a rest area in the grass, or even at a convenience store. I let him pick a drink, too (obviously milk or juice).

Happy travels, folks!

Beth Anne writes words & takes pictures on The Heir to Blair.
You can also find her on the TwittersFacebook.

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