Wednesday, June 01, 2005


by Marjorie
Just wanted to let you know that we're leaving for the beach on Saturday. Any tips for easing a 10 hour car ride with small children will be appreciated. Oh, while were at it -- is it a really bad thing to give your children allergy medicine even when their allergies aren't bothering them? They sleep so well on the meds and it seems harmless. I've yet to take this step but always think about it... I had a friend who did that for a long plane trip -- it worked great on the first leg of the trip but made the kid hyper on the second leg.

UPDATE on summer reading. We acquired both Prep and I am Charlotte Simmons (for links see my earlier post). We seem to have very little interest in either. I recently read The Lovely Bones -- yes, I know I'm way behind. I really liked it. I'm now reading Lotus in the Fire, The Healing Power of Zen. Not a terribly well-written book, but its kind of interesting about a former Catholic turned Zen Buddhist and how he deals with a serious illness. My DH, when I told him about the author and who himself was raised Catholic, quipped that he's 'in remission.'

I really hate packing.


Blogger dgm said...

how old are your kids? my almost-7 year old travels really well (when she's not asking if we are there yet), but she can read in the car and play with this big book of car games & puzzles. our 2 y.o. did surprisingly well also. we usually get several books on tape/cd from the library and bring TMBG and other music. we'll listen to one cd, or to several chapters if it's a book, then it's the next person's choice for what to listen to next. if the story is good, the next person doesn't usually interrupt the flow.

11:32 AM  
Blogger SuzanH said...

I loved the Lovely Bones. I thought it was wonderfully written and poignant.

As far as travel--we took our then 3 year old on a 10 hour car trip and it went surprisingly well. Lots of little snacks and drinks, a container of crayons and washable markers, coloring books and paper, books to look at, music to sing along with.

One thing I'd recommend is a booklight. It will come in handy, even if your children can't read yet. I'll never forget my daughter holding up her books so that the headlights from the cars behind us lit up the pages.

12:07 PM  
Blogger Marjorie said...

My kids are 5 and 2 1/2. My 5 year-old is pretty good, I can throw books at her and she's fine. I've also stock-piled some of those Usborne search books that I hope will occupy her. Its the 2 1/2 yo that worries me -- she's gotten a bit fussy in the car recently, though she did very well on a 4 hour trip not long ago. She'll look at books but is more active than her sister -- she wants to get out and run. I like the crayons idea, what do you use for a surface? I suppose I could try a cookie sheet, but I'm afraid it will just be something else she drops on the floor.

Music -- thats going to be touch and go, my DH is getting Bruce Springsteen's Devils and Dust and I fear we will hear a lot of that. I also bought a party CD that includes Cotton-Eyed Joe and we'll probably have to hear it for hours on end. For the uninitiated, TMBG is They Might Be Giants, Donna and I have been chatting about them recently.

Good hints -- thanks!

3:07 PM  
Blogger Anne Zelenka said...

I didn't really like The Lovely Bones. I couldn't get over the grotesqueness of the situation. Let me know what you think of those other two books; I need some good fiction to read.

Have a great time on your trip!

4:21 PM  
Blogger Marjorie said...

I hear you, Anne. I remember when someone first suggested it to me years ago, I was creeped out. When it came into my hands recently I read the first few pages and was hooked -- probably in part because I wanted to know what happens to the killer. Then I wanted to know how a family deals with such a horrible loss because I (probably like many moms) sometimes wonder how I'd cope with the death of a child. I found it very Buddhist in its non-attachment way -- suffering is inevitable, you cannot escape suffering (did I get that right?)

5:05 PM  
Blogger dgm said...

we took a 10 hr. car trip in december when my little guy was almost 2. i would describe him just as you did your 2 1/2 yr. old--active, wants to run, and not be strapped in, etc. we brought along viewmaster & many reels (we had him practice using it beforehand so that he wouldn't get frustrated in the car), picture books, sang a lot of songs (he loves to hear singing), and asked him a lot of questions because he really wants to be in on the conversation with the rest of the family. i agree that crayons can be unwieldy; you might try either an etch-a-sketch, a magna-doodle, or that pad with rainbow colors underneath and black grease on top (covered by clear plastic) and the kids draw on it with a stylus. i can't remember what it is called, but they were around when i was a kid and it's the "magic..." something. other ideas--wooden bead toys & things she can manipulate with her fingers, kaleidoscopes. if there's something interesting along the way and you have time for a brief side trip. kids can be easily amused at a fountain at a mall, for example, so let them stomp in that for 15 mins.
and, of course, rest stops and running. it'll be more like a 12 or 13 hour trip!

5:21 PM  
Blogger clanlally said...

I know you are probably going to hate me for this but one of the best investments Ive made in the last 3 years (possibly EVAH) is a portable dvd player. Priceless. Worth 1000 times what we paid for it. Maybe more.

1:38 PM  

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