Our family of seven is hitting the road this Christmas! Two adults and five kids. We are taking a 14 hour car trip from Orlando to Indianapolis. We’re leaving at 5 am and arriving at 8 p.m. I’m envisioning pure chaos. Arguments. Tears. Uncontrollable laughing. And crankiness.
Here’s my plan for making this trip go as smoothly as possible:
A SEATING CHART:
We have 7 seats in our car. It’s always a fight among the kids to see who gets the middle seats with the most leg room.
So before all the kids run to the car and scramble to get these prized seats, I will be one step ahead of them. I will be meeting them at the car door with a seating chart in hand. (Ah-ha!) Each child has been assigned to a specific seat for as long as we travel in a particular state. For instance, once we cross the state line from Florida into Georgia, we will rotate. We’ll continue to change seats as we pass each state line until we reach Indiana. If I do this right, we will make one full rotation.
The benefit? Mixing it up a bit will keep them fresh with new neighbors to talk to on the trip.
It’s expensive buying treats at every gas station, not to mention eating at restaurants along the way for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I’m planning ahead. That means breakfast and snacks in the car (see my menu below), a picnic lunch at a rest area, and dinner we will splurge at some quick stop along the way.
Snacks: Popcorn Rocky Road, (packed in individual bags), grapes (no seeds or cores to get rid of), Christmas Cookies, (preferably chewy and not crumbly)
Breakfast: minI muffin frittatas, heated just before we leave.
Lunch: tortilla wraps with turkey, spinach and cream cheese. Individual ziploc bags of pretzels. Bottled water.
I’m a stickler for the kids learning something with each new experience. That’s why I’ve created a trivia worksheet for each of them to complete on our travels. They need to pick a map of the state we are driving through and tell us the Capital and three interesting facts about that state. (Let them use those phones and ipads for research and not just video games.)
(Need to work on our capital cities a bit. Not Jacksonville, but Tallahassee:)