I’m in the middle of laundry, packing, cleaning out the frig and everything else that is involved when getting ready to hit the road for a family trip. Our trip will be about 8 hours of driving time to a /great/ place to take the kids: Washington DC! I am excited. My boys are pumped. The family is going to spend some great time together.
For our trip I wanted to share a little ‘Journal’ I’m putting together for the boys. A place to store all of their paper memorabilia, a spot to jot their thoughts and draw pictures, a way to help them get excited and keep the excitement even when we return home in a few days.
What do you need to create your own Vacation Journal? It can be simple! A simple Notebook was all I used for a trip to visit Grandma and Grandpa a few years ago. I taped a piece of paper to the front of the notebook that said “My Camp Grandpa Journal”. They drew in it, wrote in it, even taped branches and sticks they picked up on nature walks with Grandpa. Grandma carved time out in their busy days to write (or draw) in their journals if they wanted to. It was a great treasure. (and two years later they both still have them!)
For our Washington DC trip I made it a little more extensive.
- Three ring-binder with pockets. This is their Vacation Journal. Everything else will fit into it.
- Loose leaf notebook paper to put in binder. The kids can draw in them, write in them if they are old enough or a little of both. If there is a lull in your vacation suggest (don’t require!) that they could write down what they saw that day or what they learned. Learning to journal at a young age is a great life-tool!
- Binder Pouch to hold items listed below
- Tape to attach things to their paper that they might pick up during their vacation
- Some pens, crayons and pencils to write and draw with
- Little “reporter”-notepads that they can bring with them into the museums. Less bulky than the big binder and perfect for writing down what they see in the moment
- I also picked up some laminated US Maps in the Atlas section of the store. (You can also print a US Map to save a dollar) This will go in the front of their binder and is for the road trip. A great way to talk about the different states is to look for license plates along the way. This will give them a frame of reference as to where the different states fall on a map. Looking for license plates is also a great trip time-passing game.
- Some tiny dot-stickers to put on each state that they see a license plate for
- I printed a few games from MomsMinivan that I will also hole-punch and place in their binders to pass some more time along the way