BUFFALO, NY (PRWEB) May 15, 2013
Whether it’s by car, plane or boat, traveling with kids for a summer vacation could look similar to an episode of “Survivor”. Long trips and the hustle and bustle of traveling can be hard on young children. It wreaks havoc on their routines and tests their patience (and ultimately yours), which can be a recipe for disaster.
However, traveling and exploring new places is an important experience for children and shouldn’t be sacrificed. It is an opportunity to bond as a family and create memories. With a few tips from Christina Fecio, director of education and training at Doodle Bugs! Children’s Centers, a leader in educational child care, you can perfect the travel experience and focus on enjoying the vacation. And, if you’re lucky, you may never hear “are we there yet?”
Think about Logistics. As fun as it may be to leave caution to the wind and play the trip by ear, you need to have your game face on when traveling with little ones. This includes planning the time of the day to leave and arrive at the destination, when to stop for food or what clothes your child will be most comfortable sitting in all day. As little disruption to their sleep or eating schedule is important and the key to managing meltdowns.
Bag of Tricks. Depending on your child’s age, you may need to help with the gathering of items for the bag. It should include toys or activities that will help keep them busy, but also snacks and bottled water. Think about crayons and coloring books, reading books, Legos, dolls, etc. A cookie tray often acts a magnet board or something steady to do their coloring on that won’t send the crayons flying. To make this even more exciting, let them pick a new bag for the trip. The disclaimer is they need to be able to carry the bag, or it’s not so big that it’s overpowering.
Make it Interactive. Distraction is not the only way to make traveling with children manageable. Consider games or activities that involve the whole family, which can be done while in the car or at the airport or even on the plane. Reference lessons your child is learning at school and build upon that. Try initiatives like Simon Says, singing songs or have a puppet show using socks. Create a bingo board on a magnadoodle by drawing a simple grid with pictures of things you’re likely to see (stop sign, train, tree, truck, etc.) and have your child cross them off as he sees them.
The Secret Stash. This is probably the most important thing you can have on the trip. This is your go-to bag, containing dollar store toys wrapped like presents, surprise snacks that the kids don’t know about, or extra markers, wipes, tissues, second set of clothes in case of spills and anything else that will keep them entertained or distract them from getting upset.
“The trick, as parents, is to have realistic expectations. Babies will cry, toddlers may tantrum, siblings may bicker, and everyone will probably have whiny moments, but those moments will pass – and they don’t have to ruin a trip,” Fecio said. “It’s important to embark on travel well prepared, but the key to a successful trip really is to not sweat the small stuff.”
Founded more than 20 years ago by siblings Anthony, Clarine and Anna Insinna, Doodle Bugs! has remained family-owned and operated since its first center opened with 24 students. Today, the company is the official child care provider of the Buffalo Bills and Buffalo Sabres, operates more than 10 corporate and franchised locations from Upstate New York to Pennsylvania, and has expanded its ‘Doodle Community’ to more than 2,000 families. For more information on Doodle Bugs! Children’s Centers, please visit http://www.doodlebugs.com.