Preparing for a long road trip with young kids can be a daunting task, but with the right mind set and a little forethought, it can be a big success.
Buckle for Safety, Correctly. In a previous blog post, I wrote about the fact that the DMV estimates that nine out of ten car seats in this country are incorrectly installed. If you are looking for a car seat inspection station in or around St. Petersburg, consider using this service to find the professional advice you need to prepare for your trip.
Be Prepared for Emergencies. Once the car seats are properly installed, then it is time to consider the other safety issues that may arise. It is wise to keep a first aid and emergency kit in the car. This should include basic first aid supplies, but also water, snacks, charged cell phone, and a flashlight, at the very least. Take a look at this site for more advice about creating an emergency kit.
Plan in Advance. If you hope to maintain your sanity on a long road trip, it is wise to prepare ahead of time. Creating a list may seem excessive, but, in truth, a list will help you keep yourself organized as you pack and will help to ensure you have what you need when you arrive. Consider using Microsoft Excel to create a detailed packing list. Why so formal? First, an organized list can help ensure that you don’t forget those small, last minute, essential items, like toothbrushes, deodorant, and pillows. Second, once created, the file can be saved and reused for future trips.
Feeding Time at the Zoo. Your vehicle can become a crazy, loud, and upsetting environment if the family gets hungry before the designated stop. Be sure that you pack healthy snacks. It is also wise to choose foods that take a while to eat. For instance, an apple can keep a kid busy for 20 minutes, whereas a candy bar will last for five minutes, at most. Plus, the apple will be less likely to lead to belly aches. Other healthy snack ideas include cheeses, nuts, raisins, dry cereal, yogurt tubes, and granola bars.
Don’t Forget The… While not absolutely necessary, there are certain items that will likely make your trip far more enjoyable. For instance, a portable potty is wise for really long trips with small bladders. Pillows can provide added back seat comfort, sugar free mints can keep kids occupied and help settle upset stomachs. Plastic baggies are perfect for creating individual size snack portions, but also awesome for creating play packages with crafting supplies, crayons, magnets, and more. Also, a pack of baby wipes can reduce the stress that comes with sticky hands or accidental spills.
When planning for your trip, be sure that you aren’t placing undue stress on yourself. Provide additional packing and unpacking time in your Saint Petersburg home. This might mean taking an additional half- or full day off from work at the beginning and end of your planned trip, but it will be well worth it when you realize that you don’t have to rush the process. Stress and fatigue make you a danger on the road, which increases the chances that you wind up facing a personal injury attorney in court.