Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Holiday Travel With Kids - Tips to Navigate the Question Are We There Yet?

by Guest Blog Columnist
Jeff Siegel, Author of RelationTrips

All the photos in this post were taken by Janis Brett Elspas, creator of MommyBlogExpert, on her own family's latest road trip adventure in Summer 2010.

Editor's Note: Jeff Siegel is author of RelationTrips to be released in early 2010 which offers his advice on how to transform family  journeys from “Are we there yet?” to “Let’s go!”

In RelationTrips, Siegel teaches families to turn a common road trip into a creative and spontaneous journey that builds lasting bonds.  RelationTrip, as defined by the author, is an ongoing series of family trips, personalized and planned together by adults and kids around a common theme or interest.

Mt. Rushmore, South Dakota, 2010
MommyBlogExpert's Daughter & Hubbie
Photo by Janis Brett Elspas, MommyBlogExpert

Traveling over the river and through the woods this holiday season offers a great opportunity for families to engage, connect and create a lifetime of shared memories during their time on the road.

1.  Name your Holiday trip.  Before you embark, sit down as a family and personalize your trip by giving it a name. Weave in something relating to the holiday for which you are traveling, such as “Turkey in Detroit.” Or consider including the family name, such as “The Douglas Family’s December to Remember!”

2. See the journey with new eyes. No matter how many times your family, may have traveled the route, take the opportunity to discover hidden gems along the way.  Pick out two or three new places to stop while in transit, such as a landmark that you have never visited or a roadside restaurant that you’ve always wanted to try.

Ice Cave, New Mexico, 2010
MommyBlogExpert's Girls Panning for Gold
Photo by Janis Brett Elspas, MommyBlogExpert

3. Get creative with games. Help pass time while in the car by making up games to play. Give them a Holiday feel – such as Guess My Favorite Present, Name That Christmas Tune, The Chanukah Memory Game and Quote that Holiday Movie.

4. Be your own DJ. Challenge each family member to put together a play list of their top ten Holiday tunes. Have each member of the family take turns doing their own countdown.

5. Design a scavenger hunt. Determine your rest stops ahead of time and pick out items to find at each one. Create a checklist of items to spot while you’re on the road and have each member of the family keep track along the way. Bring along a prize for the person who finds the most items and award it when you reach your final destination.

National Route 66 Museum, Oklahoma, 2010
MommyBlogExpert's Kids
Photo by Janis Brett Elspas, MommyBlogExpert

6. Have fun with Holiday food. While you are on the road, take a detour to a farm or market to gather ingredients for the meal. Once you arrive, plan a food-themed activity such as visiting a turkey farm to “Pardon A Bird” or a local orchard for a sleigh ride and hot apple cider.

About Jeff Siegel
In 2000, fun-loving, single-father Jeff Siegel embarked on a spur-of-the-moment vacation with his son Spence that took them across the southwestern tier of National Basketball Association arenas.  Shortly thereafter, Siegel formulated a grandiose plan:  he and Spence would visit every NBA arena and Major League Baseball park in the United States. 

What started as a series of hilarious road games and unexpected tours turned into a journey that would change everything for the Siegel and his son.  Through their quest, Jeff and Spence have re-imagined the classic road trip and invented a new model for a family vacation – the RelationTrip.

In the coming months, Siegel will share his sage advice in an inspiring and engaging new book RelationTrips: A Simple, Powerful Way to Bond with Your Loved Ones Through Personalized Road Trips.  In RelationTrips, Siegel provides a practical road map for building enduring family connections and creating trips filled with adventure, imagination, discovery and fun.  For more information see

Please leave a comment: Where will you be taking the kids for the holidays and how will you keep everyone engaged along the way?

FTC Disclosure:  MommyBlogExpert will be receiving a copy of the book RelationTrips for an upcoming book review on this blog.  I did not receive any payment or other compensation associated with this particular post.   See complete FTC Disclosure information that appears at the bottom of MommyBlogExpert's main page and at the bottom of every individual post on this blog, including this one.

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