My Epic Road Trip. Part One: Planning

My Epic Road Trip: Part One: Planning

This summer I am going to check something off my bucket list. My epic road trip with my kids.

A cross country road trip with children improbably isn’t on very many people’s bucket lists. In fact, when I mention this trip to people they try to mask their pity with curious smiles. I know not everyone wants to spend six hours a day with 4 kids in a mini-van and thats okay! But I am SUPER excited to make this trip. My husband and I love traveling. We actually met on a mission trip to the Philippines and since he is form Canada, we have made the trip to and from Canada many times. But due to the cost, we have yet to do very much traveling with our four children. That will change this summer.

In the second half of July, my blog will look drastically different for about a month. You won’t see any recipe posts or health related topics (unless they come up naturally in our travels), but you WILL see lots of pictures of the places we stop and the things we see. My blog will temporarily become a travel journal to help me record our journey.

On the practical side. How will my epic road trip work?

Honestly? I don’t know. I have never attempted something like this before. And I would LOVE suggestions for those of you who have done a lot of traveling by car (or mini-van). So here is my plan. My husband isn’t actually making this trip with me. It will be my sister and I doing the driving and the 4 kids doing… well, what kids do. I have a pretty average Honda mini-van. Nothing special, but she is reliable. These are the things I have thought of so far.

Packing. Everyone will only take a backpack of personal belongings that will fit under their seat. This will allow a couple changes of clothes and a swimsuit. Everyone got new hiking sandals that are waterproof, so our walks in the woods and time at the beach is covered by one pair of shoes each. We will simply wash everyone’s clothes every few days either at laundromats or friend’s houses. We will remove one of the captain’s chairs in the van to make more room for group supplies and make it easier to get in and out.

Accommodations. We have a lot of friends and family along our route (see above), but I don’t want to be a burden (I do have 4 kids after all), so we are taking a tent to camp in along the way. I have an air mattress and the kids have camping mats. Once we get out of the hot, wretched South, this should be a very comfortable arrangement. The boys are big enough to set up the tent on their own. Score.

Food. Not only would eating out the whole time be expensive, but 4 weeks of it would make us all ill. I plan to continue eating real food. We will have a cooler and food box with some basic food prep and cooking supplies and we will shop along the way to buy fresh produce, meat and dairy. I imagine we will eat lots of fruit, cheese and nuts as those things travel well and make quick snacks.

Entertainment. Audio books. Lots of them from the library. Plus my kids each have a hand held gaming device that they get very limited time with at home. I think long car rides are the perfect time to let them get bonus time. My sister and I ask have a laptop each for movies. My biggest concern is my 20 month old who has no interest in movies. Suggestions for a toddler in the car? Pass them this way! I also plan on bringing my guitar for evenings camping, since electronics will be limited to car time only. Like it or not, my kids have a musician for a mother, so singing is part of their life.

Want to help me on my epic road trip?

Awesome! I want tips on the best places to get good food (farmer’s markets, etc), where to camp (that has showers!!!) best hiking, picnic and must see places along our route. We are especially interested in free activities in nature! I have a great hiking backpack to wear the baby in and my 4 year old can go a good 3-4 miles, so family friendly trails would be great.

I also would love suggestions and tips for car travel with little ones. Bring ’em on! I am still in the planning stages and nothing is set in stone. I want to learn everything I can from those with lots of experience. Share your tips and ideas with me!

My Epic Road Trip. Part one: planning

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