June 2021

Summer Road Trip Necessities

With warm weather here to stay, many of us, including many of our Respite Week recipients, are hitting the road for a much-needed week away. We've pulled together a list of a few necessities you'll want to make sure you have ready before you embark on your next road trip!


What would a road trip be without music? We’ve got you covered with our Spotify Road Trip Playlist. Full of family-friendly favorites, it will get you in the mood for fun and maybe even foster a sing-along or two. Song recommendations are still being accepted. So if there’s a classic tune missing from the playlist, let us know on Instagram or Facebook; we would be happy to add it!

Peace of Mind

Inevitably during a long car trip, there will be some bumps on the road. Little ones may not always be in a pleasant mood, and a cramped space or bad traffic can put even the most optimistic person on edge. So another great way to prepare before a big trip is to be in the right headspace going in. Take some time for yourself to meditate before a trip. You can even get the whole family in on it by doing a simple guided breathing exercise together after everyone is buckled up and ready to go. Even a quick, 5-minute meditation session can give all travelers a moment to relax before heading out on your journey.


Gas stations and pit stops often have little in the way of healthy options, so prep ahead of time with some to-go containers filled with chopped veggies, crackers, hummus cups, and string cheese! Having a replaceable lid will make it easy to re-store the containers in a cooler and keep everything in one place. 

Another make-ahead hit is homemade trail mix. If you are traveling with kids, this is an easy activity that gives everyone a say on what can be included in the mix, making it more likely they will eat it. Browse the nut, dried fruit, and maybe even the candy aisle of your grocery store and let your little ones pick out their favorite additions. Then just mix it all together and dole it out into individual bags or containers. 


When traveling with little ones, it’s important to keep them entertained! So it is always helpful to have a few games on hand when boredom starts to set in. I-spy is a great way to get younger kids looking out the window and talking about what is going on beyond the confines of the car. Another favorite for older kids is the Alphabet game. The premise is one person picks a category: food, cities, songs, etc., and taking turns, each participant has to name something in that category going through the alphabet. So, for example, if the category was food, the first participant would say apple, the second participant would say bacon, and so on until you get to the last letter in the alphabet. This is a great way to get the brain working and conversation flowing. 


Reading in the car (especially on long car rides) can be an unpleasant experience for many. Audiobooks are an excellent way to get some quality reading in while cruising to your destination–and without the headache! For those traveling with little ones, audiobooks can help improve literacy and listening skills–which can be necessary on long car rides when children are typically excited and restless. Plus, the list of available audiobooks is practically endless, and there’s truly something for everyone! Last, if you find yourself frequently overpacking, audiobooks can help save valuable space in your car or luggage. So hop in the car, and just press play to transport yourself into your imagination with an audiobook.

For more visual travelers, a portable DVD player or tablet loaded with multiple movies is a great way to keep passengers and little ones occupied during long trips. Plus, if you bring along headphones for your little movie-watchers, you can enjoy a little peace and quiet while cruising to your vacation destination.

No matter where the destination is this summer, we hope these tips help make the ride as smooth as possible, so you get to your vacation ready to enjoy it!