We set out at 7am, loaded with snack, movies, books and everything we could think of that we needed to keep two 8 year olds, a 4 year old, a 2 year old and three adults occupied for the drive. Personally, I hate stopping unnecessarily, but since I was just a passenger, I had to go with the flow. The drive was going well, and we made good time all the way to Casa De Fruita. Always a fun stop, we pulled over and let the kids out to run for a bit. They had a wonderful pumpkin patch set up, and a corn maze. The kids enjoyed running, and met a nice peacock! Making stops at fun or interesting places along the way really makes the road trip that much easier, because children can be given points of the trip to anticipate, and to break up the monotony of driving. The Nintendo DS went a long way towards keeping the older girls happy, and the little ones watch movies on a portable DVD player.
Lucky for us, we had a designated driver, as my husband is a professional (no, really he is!) so us girls had free time to read. This is one of those days when my Kindle REALLY came in handy! I had 33 books, plus a couple of blogs to read. I am really blessed that I don't get sick reading in the car.
We made one last quick stop into the candy store after everyone had used the potty, and picked up treats for the rest of the drive. Lollypops go a long way towards calming down kids in car seats!
We arrived in Monterey right on time! Spent a great day at the aquarium, had a yummy dinner, then loaded back up for the road trip back. The trip back was quieter, as children were getting sleepy. Stops for Starbucks were a must, and chocolate milk and cookies were a great way to end a perfect trip! Pulling back into our own driveway was a relief as by that point almost all of us had had all we could stand of being in the car!!
Planning activities, places of interest and snacks and drinks went a long way towards making the road trip as smooth as possible. Managing expectations, and knowing that things will go wrong also helped to keep heads level and tires on the road!
I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Discount Tire blogging program, making me eligible to receive a $50 gift card and be entered for a chance to win a prize valued at $1,000. For more information on how you can participate, click here