So remember last summer when I was, like 43 months pregnant in Louisiana in almost-July? Yeah, that was fun. My poor kids…aside from swimming lessons, I pretty much kept us locked inside the house with the shades down while I poked at the thermostat, wondering why 72 degrees felt like suffocation.
So in an attempt to make this summer more fun than last summer, we have a lot of plans. We have places to go. We have people to see. And we’re really excited about it.
During our most recent travels, the kids and I went to Utah and stayed with my parents for a few days
before taking the 5 1/2-hour car ride up to see Sara for a few days, then we headed back to Utah to see the awesome teenage boy who pulled my son out of the water last October receive a life saving award from the Boy Scouts.
All in all, it was a pretty amazing trip.
But guess what is kind of not amazing?
Traveling with kids. It’s hard. It just is. There’s no good way around it. Every time I’ve done it, I’ve reached a point where I don’t care what the kids do as long as they’re not bothering anyone (read: donuts for dinner in the airport when our flight was delayed).
One thing that really helps is just keeping them busy and un-hungry. Funny story: my husband and I have flown fairly frequently our whole marriage because his family has always lived a plane ride away. And every single time, we’ve gotten dried mangoes and Lance Crackers–it’s like this unspoken family tradition.
So when we had the chance to partner up with Lance Crackers with kid-friendly activities, especially as we’re getting into Travel Season, it was a perfect, serendipitous fit!
Growing up, we always played the license plate game or the ABC game, but the license plate game always took too long and the ABC game always ended too quickly. So as I was thinking of travel activities with my kids, I thought it would be fun to do a little of both–a travel scavenger hunt where they can keep their eyes open for interesting (or not-so-interesting) things along the way, with plenty of snacks on hand to keep everyone happy.
I got a couple of cheap ice cube trays and some labels from the office department of the store…
and then I just started listing things they could keep their eyes out for. I actually made two sets, one for the plane and one for the car trip.
My kids LOVED it! One of our favorite parts was that just for fun, I put alpacas on our car version, totally thinking that would be the ONE THING we wouldn’t see. Well, when we stopped to get gas on the lonely, desolate, human-free road between Northern Utah and Boise, these guys were there to greet us:
My kids were so excited and it was such a fun way to engage with each other and enjoy the trip (instead of everyone being off in their own Nintendo DS/iPod world).
You can totally label your ice cube trays however you want, but if you’re looking for ideas, click here for a printable version of the list I made:
This was such an inexpensive, fun way to keep the kidlets busy on the road (and in the air) and they’re already looking forward to the next time we get to use them, which is a total win for me!
I want to hear (I really do) about your summer plans–where are you going? What are you doing? Where have you been?
We partnered with Lance Crackers for this post, but all the opinions are completely our own.