Tuesday, June 22, 2004

It's always hard to travel with small children, whether it's on a plane or in a car. I actually took a long bus trip 10 years ago when my oldest were just toddlers. That was really difficult!

I found that taking lots of high-protein snacks (no crackers or sugar!), like string cheese, beef jerky, and peanut butter, really helped keep them well fed. On the Greyhound, we had few stops for food, and the options were low-quality and expensive.

Also, a backpack of toys for each child was essential. Some crayons, and coloring books, workbooks, a couple of story books, and legos and small dolls really kept them occupied.

A couple of small but comfy pillows and small but comfy blankets were also needed. Even in the summer, with the air conditioning, the bus can be cool at night.

The last time we traveled, we took Amtrak, and got a family room. This was WONDERFUL! We had a window on each side of the train, and all the coffee, tea, and juice we could drink. It came with a newspaper, too. Blankets, and pillows, and the beds were very, very comfortable.

With our family room, we got free meals - for me and all 4 children that were traveling with me. The dining car was very elegant and fun!

There were movies in the viewing car, and games in the snack room, below the viewing lounge.

It was the most fun way to travel with children! We were busy the entire time. I could shut the door to our family room, and the kids had enough space that they could play games at the little table. With the door shut, I didn't have to worry about the kids bothering anyone or wandering off and getting lost.

We did have to share a bathroom. The family rooms don't have bathrooms, although the deluxe rooms and handicapped rooms do. But the bathrooms were nearby, and we could shower in themorning, which was wonderfully refreshing for this kind of trip.

Here's a great article with tips about traveling with children on a plane.