We journeyed about 2hr45min drive time to the southeast and the Santa Cruz mountains (home of banana slugs) nearly at the top of Highway 17 to celebrate the 4th of July with friends. As always we put some thought into our travel plan. We generally opt to travel during the afternoon when both our children nap, but this time we changed it up a bit as the festivities were due to start that afternoon. So we left during my son's AM nap. It took him a bit to get there, but he did just over an hour nap.
After about 20 minutes of being awake he realized it was lunch time, so we stopped as we generally do. This serves a couple of purposes other than getting food in our bodies and taking bio breaks. My daughter tends to get car sick, so it gives her a break and some fresh air and it gives my highly active son a chance to stretch his legs. We generally pack lunch in a small cooler. We are not regular fast food eaters and by giving my daughter food she is used to on a daily basis it assists with her nausea. However, if there is not a rest stop or park to stop at we will choose a fast food establishment we know has outdoor seating. Then to not feel as though we are abusing their hospitality go in and purchase a diet drink.
Back on the road and a movie later and we are at our destination. Yes, we do have a portable DVD player. Unfortunately we don't have a great recommendation of one to buy. Reason being...our road is very bump and we have managed to shake 3 systems to unusable. So my husband being a MacGyver of sorts now has two screens (one for each child) rigged up to play movies off our IPod nano. So no more skipped DVD players and no more dvd boxes cluttering the floor.
On our return home we did drive during those afternoon naps. My children are quite tall as I have mentioned in other blogs. Another must-have for our daughter and soon our son is a footrest. As our daughter grew she started complaining about leg tingling...this completely solved that. She generally takes a stuffed animal or her travel pillow to assist with head support when she sleeps. She happens to have one from REI, but I have never been disappointed with products from Leaps and Bounds either.
One more tidbit I will leave you with...especially if you get tired of picking Cheerios or Goldfish crackers out of the cracks in their seats....the snack trap.
So we made it up and back...with everyone getting their naps. Mom and Dad getting some peace and quiet. And no one having a melt-down. Woo-hoo!