Thursday, April 10, 2014

Traveling with Kids

Phew! It took less time to get the clan through security than you expected, but now you've got to entertain the kids in the airport for the next hour or two, as well as on the plane. No sweat--as long as you've got a well-stocked backpack at your side. Here's what you need:
  • Pencil and Paper so that you and the kids can play word games or draw funny pictures. Throw in a pad of Post-It® notes or a roll of masking tape and they can make no-mess designs wherever they're sitting.
  • Markers and a coloring book are always good bets for younger kids. Crayola® even has a no-mess finger paint, Color Wonder, that transforms from solid, colors paint into red, blue, green, yellow, orange, and violet. It comes with a special coloring book.
  • Map of the Country or where you're going so that the kids can get a sense of how far they're traveling. Try Rand McNally's Kids Map of the United States.
  • Deck of Cards so that you can teach your gang your favorite game--and they can teach you theirs.
  • Stamped Post Cards so they can write one to themselves or their dog while on the plane. If they send cards home about their adventures all along the way, they'll have a travel journal waiting when they get home.
  • Extra Long Lasting Batteries like Duracell® or Energizer® so their electronic games don't conk out mid-flight.
  • Band Aids® because they always need one when you don't have one. Get some colorful ones. When they get bored, they can play hospital with their dolls and stuffed animals.
  • Water Bottle like those durable ones from Nalgene® that come in many colors. They become souvenirs when the kids paste stickers on them from all places they've been.
  • A Book for the kids about the place you're going. Ask your local children's librarian for suggestions.
  • Healthy Snacks like fruit, dried fruit, pretzels, or granola bars. Bring sandwiches from home to avoid pricey airport spots.
  • A Surprise Gift to pull out when you get to the gate or board the plane. Bring a new book for your preschooler, an action figure for your six-year-old, an electronic game for your middle-schooler, and an iTunes gift card for your teen. On the trip home, give them that extra souvenir you told them you wouldn't buy. They'll be too busy to think about how long the trip is taking.
What are some of your traveling with kids ideas?
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