Friday, November 19, 2010

Packin' It Up

We are leaving to head to Dallas, Texas, to visit family for a week. I am really trying to keep the packing simple and streamlined. I also am keeping in mind the amount of money that it costs when you drive 16, snacks, hotel, all adds up.

Since it seems that there will be a variety of weather while we are there, I made a list for each child that includes:

4 long-sleeved shirts
3 pants
2 short-sleeved shirts


2 pajamas


one pair of shoes

We will do laundry once or twice while we are there so I hope that each long-sleeved shirt will get worn twice.

I gave myself a few more options, but really only packed things that would mix and match well and layers.

In order to cut costs on food while traveling, I have packed three reusable grocery bags with snacks and the fixings for sandwiches. I also purchased four Lunchables for the kids...not healthy, but fun for them and cheaper than a Kids' Meal!

I also put together a bin filled with paper-products and a tablecloth...our goal is to use Rest Areas instead of gas stations/fast-food restaurants as stopping places. We can use the restroom, eat outside at a table, and have plenty of room for the kids to run and get out the energy! Since I use cloth-everything at home, I don't feel bad about using some disposable products to make our trip easier.

We don't ever drink soft drinks at home but like the occasional one when we are out and about and traveling. Instead of paying the crazy prices of fast-food/gas stations, we are bringing along a small cooler of ice and a two 2-liters. I got a great BOGO deal on Honest Kids Organic Juice boxes a few weeks ago and have those ready for the kids.

I hope that these small, intentional choices will help us use our time and money wisely and lend to healthier on-the-road dining experiences. I already feel better knowing that I am setting the tone for our travel and not allowing the restaurant chains to dictate our diet and our time and our budget.

And now I am off to find some fun travel games for kids and put together a fun travel bag for each of them!


contented sparrow said...

have a wonderful trip, aimee! we take long road trips with the kids, too, and i always pack like you do....streamlining clothing, filling thermos' with lemonade, making sandwiches, rest area stopping for the kids to run, tons of books, art supplies, books on CD, a couple movies from the library (Sound of Music is great because it is LONG and i never tire of listening to it from up front).
happy thanksgiving to you. i'm thankful for you!

Julze said...

Great idea taking food with you for the journey. It is SO expensive buying "ready-to-eat" food while travelling, especially with a family!

Have a safe trip!

Marianna said...

My wishes for a safe and happy journey. Don't you love traveling to Texas at this time of year. During the course of your stay you could go from shorts to parkas!

We made many similiar trips while living in Indiana. It was sixteen hours to my parents house in kids are old pros at traveling. Happily it is now only 2.5 hours away!

Audio books are an excellent way to pass long car rides.

Andrea said...

love those intentional choices. beautiful! have a wonderful trip and I'll be praying for y'all!

Ann Kroeker said...

I think the fun food adds to the vacation feeling, and as you said, keeps costs down. I like what you pointed out, that because you use cloth at home for napkins and regular plates and such, you don't feel bad about these occasional disposable events. We feel the same about camping. We don't go super often, but when we do it's been a nice thing to throw the bowls away after oatmeal mornings!

Enjoy the journey!

Love Bears All Things said...

Hello, I just found your blog today as I was looking for families that are trying to live a more simple life...I have been married almost 44 years and this is the way we have always traveled...we can lunch on cheese, fruit and crackers so if we can't get out to a picnic table because of weather, we just eat in the car...I don't know the ages of your children but you could put together your own lunch meal similar to those you can purchase using some ham, cheese, apple slices and crackers...
I normally carry breakfast things along too unless we stay in a motel with a breakfast included....dinner is the only meal we eat out and I sometimes even carry food for one or two of those..when the children were young, we often had hot dogs or chili using a hot pot for cooking.
Enjoy your visit.
Mama Bear

STEPHANIE. said...

Good job packing! Have so much fun!

Fiona said...

I like to do the same thing when we go on holidays. We recently went on a 10-day road trip and I packed 3 bags of food/disposable plates/plastic wrap etc. to save time and money, but when we came home I still had 3 bags full ! (like baa baa black sheep!) Not filled with exactly the same things that I started with though ... Not sure if I over-catered, or just still bought too many groceries at each stop ... !!! My poor husband had so much trouble fitting it all in each time we packed up ...