Wednesday, October 29, 2008

WFMW- Surviving with Kids in the Car (or minivan)

I remember when my sister and I shared a backseat and my mom would come up with creative ways to keep us from killing each other in such close quarters. If someone had ever told me that some day kids would have entire entertainment systems in the car just for them, or vehicles big enough that each child could have their very own seat, I probably would have wept for joy. It reminds me that my children just don't appreciate what they have, but why should they they don't know any different. And really my sob stories of when I was a child fall on deaf ears, they have heard too many of them.
So my tips for this Wednesday involve the family car, SUV, minivan, etc.

1. We rotate seats once a month, except for the baby. The two older children take turns sitting in the second and third row of the minivan or suburban. This helps to quell some of the "But she always gets to sit there!" and the mad rush to the car in which the children are "calling" which seat they get.

2. Everyone is responsible for their area and keeping it neat. I've found a great use for those plastic coffee containers. They are small enough to tuck under the seat and the kids can put their trash in them , plus they have a lid so the trash doesn't spill out or fall victim to Little One's curiosity.

3. Whatever goes into the car goes out every time we get home. The only exception are the toys and books that are stashed in Little One's box that sits in front of her seat.

4. They have headphones to listen to music and a built in DVD, but these are privileges. If they argue or don't take care of them they don't get to use them, period.

5. We play lots of games in the car: guess an animal (one person thinks of an animal and the rest ask questions to try to guess it), I spy, alphabet game, etc. Many times they bring a book or sketchbook t0 entertain themselves.

Those are just a few things that make life a little easier on the road, for more tips head over to Rocks in My Dryer!


Pat's Place said...

Whew! I remember when I was a child and we had all three of us in the back seat--with no seatbelts! That was tough, especially on long trips! And my dad DID take us on long trips throughout the southwest! Not sure how Mother remained sane! And I guess your little ones do not want to hear that story from me either??

Sasha @ Cherished Moments said...

I too remember childhood long car trips - with 4 kids squished on the back bench seat (2 sharing the middle seat belt). And I don't ever recalling fighting THAT much... did we Mum??!?! Great tips - especially the seat rotation one.