We've done a couple road trips already this Summer. One was just the kids and I driving up to Michigan to visit my Lynnie's sister's farm. I mean a working, living, breathing, breathtaking, dirty, glorious farm. I don't know who had more fun - the animals, adults or the kids.
The road trip part of it was a super fun experience on its own, let alone the farm part. Four-year-olds are ripe for experiences like this. We stayed in a super cheap hotel for two nights, which meant sleeping in the same bed, many stops along the way to use the facilities, stretch our legs (race down there and come back 10 times), and grab snacks from the trunk. The ipads were used as needed for games and Trolls viewing (OF COURSE), but for the most part, with naps and chatting and singing in the car, they did really well for kids who aren't all that used to driving really long distances.
What I learned while watching my kids in this new situation is that they thrive when given a task and they are extremely fond of - and kind to - animals. I mean, I knew this, but it's good to have it reinforced in different settings. To watch them feed meal-worm to chickens, ride a horse for the very first time, and bottle feed twin calves who had been abandoned by their mother was the kind of heart bursting sweetness and pride that every parent takes in and stores for those times when they are, let's just say, less than angelic.
Hearing them have full conversations with folks they'd just met did my heart such good. They've got questions for days and for the most part are relatively polite and thoughtful. Getting outside the normal routine is good for adults and kids. We feel really lucky that we got to go on this adventure and we will talk about our new friends for a long long time. The scenery was majestic and the air was pure. I cannot ever get enough of those perfect blue skies and fluffy clouds ripe for imagination. Throw horses, cows, chickens, dogs, cats, and some of my favorite humans in there, and FORGETABOUTIT.
Please scroll through the slideshow with captions below to get a glimpse into our road trip fun and maybe even some tips for making it work with kids. I give you - A Road Trip Story: To the Farm!
Stay tuned for our next Road Trip Story: St. Louis and a Trip Down Memory Lane.