See how focused this child is? How intent on what he’s doing? How happy and contented he seems?
Would you believe that this picture was taken after he had spent eight hours in the car?
Yes! It’s true! Like me you can enjoy a blissful twenty minutes even at the end of a long driving day if you simple follow Road Trip Tip #3: Keep something up your sleeve
This tip is really very simple. All you have to do is keep in reserve one of whatever it is that pops your kids’ cork – be it a new box of crayons, a comic book, or a set of paper dolls – and pull it out when the joy of travel has worn thin for all of you.
In this case I had purchased two new invisible ink activity books – one for each boy – earlier in the day when we stopped just west of the Mississippi River (that I could do so is another reason I have to recommend the Mississippi Valley Welcome Center on I-80). I hid them in my purse and although it was tempting many times to play the hero during the long, flat drive that afternoon I waited until after dinner because I knew that the last hour was probably going to be harder than the previous eight combined. And when I did reveal what I had stashed in my bag, well Hallelujah, it was a glorious moment. The boys couldn’t believe their luck – fresh crisp books right at the droopiest part of the day. They almost didn’t want to get out of the car when we finally reached Kansas City.
Well, maybe I’m exaggerating. But only a little.
This post is part of my 2009 series of Road Trip Tips. Other tips in the series include: