It's been 2 very long rainy days and we've now traversed 7 states in our 8 state tour. Our usual brief stops to play soccer have been replaced by a tour of Wal*Mart in a desperate attempt to stretch our legs and escape the rain. I was telling Cason that hopefully tomorrow will not be rainy and we'll be able to stop and play. She said, "Good. You'll see a lot more happy faces then!"
So what on earth have the children been doing for 26 hours in the car?
Well, we haven't been watching movies. I know this idea will meet with huge resistance and possibly confirm our diagnosis of being mentally ill, but Duane and I don't really like to let the kids watch movies in the car. Before you freak out and go to your next RSS feed, just hear me out. Between us, Duane and I have seen 44 of the 50 states and 14 countries by car. I once spent 2 weeks driving from Michigan to Alaska. I have beautiful pictures in my head of virtually every state in the Union and they didn’t come from TV! They are all mine, created and stored by my brain, one of a kind reminders that the world is a truly amazing place. The benefits of looking out the car window and just being “bored” sometimes cannot be measured. Children these days rarely have down time and always expect to be entertained. So, at the risk of committing one of our own biggest pet peeves, let us say in our best cranky adult voice… "when we were kids, we didn’t have movies in the car and we turned out just fine."
Here's what we have been doing:
- making Pipe Cleaner Statues (this was a HUGE hit)
- using Sticker books
- coloring maps of the states we're traveling through (this is another great site)
- playing Tic Tac Toe
- using the Leap Pad
- making snap together model airplanes
- listening to audio books (Henry Huggins read by Neil Patrick Harris was surprisingly wonderful)
- making aluminum foil art
- playing with toy animals
- playing with toy planes
- stringing fruit cheerios necklaces
The children have done remarkably well considering the rain, but I sure hope it's sunny (like the picture) tomorrow or I'll have to consider checking into the old Sanitarium across from our hotel.