Car Journeys with Children – Love them or Loathe them?

Car journeys are a drag – for the children that is! For me, they are stressful  –  and I am not even in the driver’s seat!

They have this amazing opinion that almost as soon as you get in the car, the SATNAV should go – ‘you have reached your destination’.

Unfortunately, that does not happen – unless of course you need a new SATNAV! Or you have entered your destination as ‘Home’, when in fact –  you are Home.

So, all we hear is ‘are we there yet’? or ‘ play this song’. Now, having three of them at the back, it is a little difficult to play 3 songs over and over again or all at the same time (which is one of the requests we regularly get!)

We hardly ever listen to the radio any more, quite simply because the they think you can rewind the song we just heard on radio and play it again. I wish!

The youngest also has a favourite song and unfortunately it is Gangnam Style – try listening to it played several times over in a closed, confined space and then tell me you like it too!

She also suffers from motion sickness and I am on hand to make Hubs stop the car so I can clean her up mainly because the smell of vomit causes others to do so too. Did I mention that my eldest gets carsick too?

I have devised a clever method where I keep a popcorn bucket or a candyfloss bucket, line it with a nappy sack and have her throw up into it. Then all I need to do is throw away the packet and get it ready for the next instalment.

The best part of it is when she instantly falls asleep when she gets into the car and gets up after we have reached our destination. This tends to be for a period of about 1- 1 ½ hours so most of the places we visit are within this drive time.

And then of course – the bickering. The elder two have this uncanny knack of getting on each other’s nerves. And again in a car, this resounds in your ears until you are ready to scream!

The only way to keep everyone happy is to ply them with sweets. They seem to calm down, ironically.

And of course, beware the ‘Mummy I have to go’ sentence. Why is it that before leaving the house, they don’t need the toilet.  But – the moment you are halfway on the motorway, they do?

Getting ready for the drive is normally longer than getting ready for the day. I have to pack sweets, drinks, change of clothes (in case they throw up over themselves – or me?), games to keep them occupied, music for the way, motion sickness meds – and remember, this is only for the journey. It’s exhausting even before I begin my trip.

There are some good points though – as a family we can sing together, play ‘I Spy’, chat (without being distracted by television) and yes sometimes enjoy the scenery (when they fall asleep) Most of the time though, I heave a sigh of relief when we arrive at our destination without hiccups.

I used to enjoy long drives – now they are mostly a means of getting us from A to B.

How about you? Do you enjoy car journeys or are they a chore? I would love to hear from you so leave a comment below.

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