I love Spring and Summer, not least of all because of the fun weekends away we have interspersed with holidays around our fine country. We don't go further than around three hours away, and while I'd like to blame that on The Boy, it's actually me that is a dreadful traveller.
When Butlin's sent us an emergency travel kit to aid 'the long and whining road', I chuckled. There are some PR pitches which are spot on quite frankly, and this is one of them.
Inside the box labelled 'Break In Case Of Emergency' was ten items. Ten very well thought-out items. These ten items are designed to combat the ten most annoying things a child can do in the car (as concluded by 1000 Netmums members):
- Fighting with siblings: Masking tape – mark out each child's 'personal space' in the car, so they know what they can't cross to annoy each other (my mum actually did that in my shared bedroom with my sister);
- Complaining they are bored: Rubik's Cube – it will keep them distracted as it has bright colours and requires both hands to operate in unison (this is also helpful to stop Little Mr. Fidgetfingers from picking his fingers);
- Kicking the driver's chair: Simple bath sponge – put it in the pocket behind the chair to lesson the impact;
- Crying loudly: Stress ball – it will help alleviate their tension, and doubles up as a fun toy;
- Losing toys under the seat: Ball of string – tie toys, notepads, etc. together and to the door handle;
- Needing the bathroom: Journey map – mark out where you are going, with all the stops so they are continually distracted (and know how long until a bathroom break);
- Singing repetitive songs: Family mix tape – each member gets to pick 5 songs beforehand, which gets put on a CD in the car. Everyone's a winner!;
- Being sick: Car bingo and cat litter – children feel sick if they look in the car so a game which requires looking out of the window will help! But if not – cat litter will help soak up the smell and liquid!;
- Complaining they are hungry: Small pots – putting finger food in small pots keeps children full as they enjoy opening their little parcels and taking longer over snacks. Also helps with portion control;
- Undoing seatbelt: Bell and ribbon – tie a double bow around the seatbelt holder with a bell in it. You will hear if they try to undo it! (Not something The Boy has ever done, but I could easily tie this to the iPad if he's trying to have a go when he shouldn't be!).
Did you know that one in three parents find the journey the most stressful part of any holiday? And one in seven parents admit to losing their temper with their children on a long journey? Holidays with families should be about having fun, catering to the needs of everyone and making sure that everyone is happy. I honestly feel that happy children = happy parents (that's why we love staying in Butlin's and Coombe Mill so much, so much to keep him busy which gives us the chance to relax).
It's really not worth becoming wound up about the journey though, the miles won't pass any quicker, the destination is still in the same place, and you are still
trapped enjoying the journey with the people you love. Enjoy the one-one time with your little ones, pack a box of goodies which will keep them amused, sit back and turn up the Frozen DVD: just Let It Go!
We were sent this kit as a part of our role as Butlin's Ambassadors.