Quiet Road Trip Activities for Little Ones

Tomorrow Miss G and I head out on a little Mama and Bubba road trip.  A good friend of mine is getting married this weekend in my hometown in the Okanagan, and since Brad is in his final few days of work at his current job before transitioning over to his new teaching position, Grae and I are on our own.  While the two of us have done the 5 or 6 hour drive sans Papa before, I must admit that I am a little nervous about it this time around (despite the fact that Grae was basically born travelling and has successfully made the 36 hour journey to Kuwait and the 36 hour journey back to Canada – if she can make it through that, she can make it through pretty much anything, right?)

The thing is, at nearly two years old, Miss G is more active than ever.  She loves to be on the go, naps in the car happen very rarely (they’re something we try our very best to avoid, so can’t blame her on that one), and without a second set of hands, there’s no one besides me to handout snacks, pass toys, or retrieve dropped items.

So, with all of this in mind, I decided to put together a little collection of simple, car-friendly activities to keep my busy body baby happy during our time on the road.  Here’s what I’ve collected…

IMG 87741. A Crayola Color Explosion mini notepad.  I was actually on the hunt for the old-school colouring pads that came with just one white marker when I was little, but no luck on that front.  While I don’t normally buy into all of the “gimmicky” products Crayola makes, this was the next best thing.  One colourless {and therefore mess-free} marker with only one lid to potentially lose, but with the fun of all the colours in the rainbow? Yes, please. Sign me up.

IMG 87712. A mini sparkly scratch notebook.  Sparkly, fun, and virtually mess-free.

IMG 87803. A magnetic pipe cleaner sensory bottle.  Quiet fun + the easiest thing to put together ever = win!

IMG 87844. A magnetic paperclip sensory bottle.  Even better than the pipe cleaner one, and while it could be a little noisy when shaken, these plastic-coated paperclips don’t make that much noise.

IMG 87875. Stickers and a notebook to stick them in.  Pure magic in our house.

IMG 87916. A homemade 3-in-1 travel board.  Very easy to make and packs a big punch as it provides 3 activities all in one.  All I did was spray an extra baking sheet I had on hand with a few coats of paint (this makes it prettier, but certainly isn’t necessary). Then I free handed three coats of chalkboard paint on this side, letting it dry well in between each coat.  Afterwards, I conditioned it by rubbing a generous amount of chalk all over the board before erasing it.  Voila!  This side is not only a perfect lap-sized chalkboard, but it also doubles as a magnet board too.

IMG 8789For the other side, I cut out a piece of felt, glued it onto the baking sheet using craft glue, and cut out some felt dress up girls by modifying the patterns found here.  Of course, the felt activity you create can be personalized to your child’s age and interests.  Cutting out the letters of your child’s name so he or she can practice spelling it, creating felt pattern blocks, or making a matching game like the ice cream cone game I made previously are just a few ideas.  

I’ve tucked all of the pieces for this travel board into separate containers  so I can hand them out one at a time tomorrow and get the most use out of this board as possible.

IMG 87827. Snacks.  Lots and lots and lots of healthy snacks, each in small individual containers so they can be handed out one at a time.  Dried fruit, nuts, dry cereal, fresh fruit and veggies, healthy bars, and freeze dried treats… All of Miss G’s favourites.

In addition to these things, we stocked up on new CDs from the library earlier this week, so we’ll have those to listen to too.  Of course, I’m hoping for a nice long nap along the way, but if it doesn’t happen these goodies should take us through a 6 hour trip, right?

Wish us luck!


8 thoughts on “Quiet Road Trip Activities for Little Ones

  1. A great post, and so well timed! :) Our son is almost 1,5 years and we’ll be doing a little road trip to Poland in a couple of weeks. I have been wondering how to prepare. Thanks!

    1. Oh good, I’m glad I could help! I’m happy to report that all of these items were a huge hit and we were able to use half of them on the way there, and save the other half so that there would be something new on the ride home. Good luck with your travels! :)

  2. Thanks for the well-timed post! We are heading to Poland in a few weeks (with our 1,5 year old son) and I’ve been wondering how to prepare for the 4-hour road trip! Cheers!

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