I have to preface this post with the fact that I do not like road trips! And when you add two energetic 5.5 year olds to the mix the idea of a road trip strikes fear in my fearless Mommie heart. So when we decided to drive to my husband’s family reunion in Charlotte, NC, I was determined not to let my worst fears come true. For perspective, my Little Miss can get to the point of pained boredom on 45 min ride – I did not relish the thought of of 9.5 hours of “this is boring” from the backseat!
Mommie mind and Pinterest kicked into high gear, resulting in 2 bags, 2 bins and several different activities designed to keep even little miss occupied. Did I mention I was trying to avoid 20 hours of screen time?
Here is our adventure-
Left NJ and within the first hour three of the activities were played!
In PA, we ended up with backseat highway bingo and a stop at the Dollar Store for the bathroom and some water (really a break for Mommie and Daddy). Chick-fil-A and singing songs followed.
In VA, we went to the amazing Luray Caverns. We were very late arriving but managed to catch a lovely (but late) tour with Tabitha – our very knowledgable tour guide. Quite wondrous to see the Caverns and hear the history. We were there 168 years – 2 days from the discovery date!!
We found a very nice hotel, The Mimslyn Inn – and had our own cottage for the night. The kids enjoyed the pull out love seat and gas fireplace and I loved that we had a real refrigerator with a freezer for our ice packs.
My little Mstr was a little disappointed that we didn’t stay in the hotel proper (his first reaction was that it was fancy), but allowed that the cottage was nice and he wanted to stay longer.
In the morning, we woke up, had breakfast from the cooler (I knew that yogurt and granola would come in handy) and we got on the road. Fortunately, we decided to drive a bit of the Skyline Drive- a beautiful route through the Shenandoah Valley.
We even saw a baby black bear and we were all thrilled!
That kept the kids occupied for the first couple hours. Then we had craft time!! I took a leap on faith and had construction paper, markers, crayons, scissors and glue in the project bags! The kids spent some time making crafts to give to Grandma and Granddaddy for their walls.
While they aren’t old enough to stay occupied reading books for hours, when craft time was over I discovered that they do love the story telling channel on Spotify!
We finally arrived around 7p in Charlotte and the family reunion festivities began!
Thanks to the Universe for traveling mercies on the first two legs of our trip.
Up next- the return trip home!!