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5 Ways to Keep Kids Entertained on Holiday Road Trips #kiaholiday

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Road trips with the kids can be trying, and they don't seem to get any better during the holidays.  If you're headed out of town with the little ones this season, you might want to try a few tricks that have worked smashingly for our family. (Santa hats optional...)

1.  DVD's.  I can't rave enough about the good ol' portable DVD player with 2 screens.  While this is an easy way to not have to do ANYTHING with the kids in a car, it's also a way to soothe younger tykes who may get squirmy in the car seat.  Create a festive feeling by watching all of your favorite holiday flicks: Elf, Miracle on 34th Street, A Charlie Brown Christmas.

2.  Christmas carols.  I know, I know; the tunes are already starting in the last week of November, and you'll likely burn out on the traditional tunes by the 10th of December.  Give your musical mix an upgrade by hooking up your iPod or iPhone, and streaming Pandora through your car's speakers.  (I love my wireless FM transmitter for this purpose.)  Pandora has an assortment of stations just for the Christmas season, and many of them jam.

3.  Holiday Snacks.  Kids that are prone to carsick might want to skip this one, but special-occasion snacks are always a hit on our family road trips!  Ideas include Tinsel Trail Mix (a mix of peppermint marshmallow, dried cranberries, and candied walnuts), clementines, and snack foods with a holiday theme.  Remember those Pumpkin Pie Pringles we told you about?

4.  I See Santa.  This is a fun game to play when it's light out, and it involves kids telling stories about seeing Santa.  Simply pick something interesting that you see going by (like a cute barn or a funny bird bath) and start your story with "I See Santa..." in/on/around the object you see.  After the first sentence, the next child in the car continues with another sentence to continue the story, and so on until the story is over or everyone is exhausted from laughter!

5.  Enjoy the lights.  If you are driving at night, you'll likely experience the peace that comes from your children being very quiet... after all, if any houses are in sight, the lights and decorations will leave them speechless this time of year!

Do you have any holiday travel plans with the kids?  How have you turned long car trips into something special for the season?

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