Wednesday, April 04, 2007

WFMW - Car Helps Edition

This week's Works-for-Me Wednesday is a special Car Edition. Shannon was looking for the "best tips for handling life on the go. How to entertain the kids in the car, or keep up with your little league gear, or how to stock an auto first aid kit."

Here are the tips that came to mind.

  • I know that winter is past but here's a cold weather car tip anyway. It's always a hassle getting Shorty buckled into his 5-point carseat with his winter coat on. Instead of loosening the belt, I have him take his coat off, buckle up, and then I help him put his coat on backwards. It acts just like a blanket with armholes. It's also very handy if the car heater gets the interior nice and toasty, he's not stuck sweltering with his coat on. He can just take it off himself and then put it back on the right way when we get where we're going.

  • I wrote about this one last summer but it certainly fits the theme so I'll include it here.

    This is one of the ways that I make driving home exciting and bearable for our two youngest guys. We started playing it when the youngest was around 3. He's 5 now. It's a good way to break up the trip into manageable pieces. Once we're on our way, I tell the guys to look for some visible landmark coming up - a restaurant, a store, a factory or construction zone with big earth-movers, a home with something unusual in the yard. They get very excited and start looking. The older kids will usually help with hints or which side of the car to be looking. Sometimes when I'm feeling especially brain-fried, the older kids will help me come up with things to look for. The littles guys really get into it, "What's next?! What's next?!" and "I see it! There is it!" When we get closer to home, they start seeing things that they're used to looking for and so recognize that home is close.

    It's pretty mind-less and I don't hear, "Are we almost home yet??!!" a hundred times a trip (X2).

  • When we're going on a long trip sometimes we play a type of alphabet game that goes something like this.

    Pastormac begins, “Aunt Bertha went to the store and she got an (item that begins with A.)" Then I go, “Aunt Bertha went to the store and she got (the A item that Pastormac listed) and an (item that begins with B.)" And so on. Each person says the list of things and then adds one on an item beginning with the next letter in the alphabet. Play continues until Z is reached or everyone is tired of playing.

    Pastormac: “Aunt Bertha went to the store and she got an apple.”
    Me: “Aunt Bertha went to the store and she got an apple and bubble bath.“
    Sweetanlo: “Aunt Bertha went to the store and she got an apple and bubble bath and chips.
    Rummy: “Aunt Bertha went to the store and she got an apple and bubble bath and chips and donuts...

    Of course, as the list gets longer, we all need a little help to remember what has already been listed.

    Can be played by listing animals....“Aunt Bertha went to the zoo and she got an anteater.”

  • One more tip.

  • When one of my kids would finish toilet training, for about a year after, I always had a bag in the trunk packed with a change of clothes, some wipes and a few plastic grocery bags. Accidents do happen and its really a bummer to be away from home without a change of clothes when they do. Being prepared spared us embarassment and unnecessary hassle. I just had to remember to bring the plastic grocery bag of wet/dirty clothes into the laundry room once we got home.

Lots of great WFMW Car Edition helps over at Rocks in My Dryer.


Beck said...

Excellent tips! Winter's not quite over here yet, sadly.

Rae said...

Great tips! I'll have to remember them for the future...thanks for sharing! =)

Hyun said...

Thanks for the tips! We can really use these when we make our frequent trips to NJ to visit the in-laws. And yes, we do have the "are we there yet?" (X102, it is a 4 hr-drive!)