Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Activity Bags

We recently traveled to Jackson, Tennessee to watch my little sister graduate from college (so proud of you seestor!)  The trip is a little over 10 hours from Nebraska.  Since we have two little ones (one of which is still breastfeeding like a champ) we decided to break the drive up into two days.

I wasn't really worried about how Lu would do on the trip.  She's such an easy baby and pretty much just needs a smile and some "mommy milk" to keep her happy.  Z, however, would be a challenge.  We had a few people offer to loan us a car DVD player.  Both Papa and I were really against the idea of letting her watch T.V. in the car, especially because it's so stimulating for her.  Can you imagine spending 10+ hours in a car with an energized and agitated 3 year old?!  We certainly didn't want to.  So we had to come up with something different.

That's when I discovered activity bags.   Hallelujah!

The concept for activity bags is pretty self-contained activity per bag.  But the possibilities are endless.  This post was VERY inspiring.  I ended up using a lot of the links found there.  I decided to make 20 activity bags for the car.  I wanted to have one bag for every hour we would be on the road.  I knew that some of the activities wouldn't fill an entire hour, but I thought 20 was a good goal. 

I decided to tell my daughter about the bags, but not share what they contained.  This made the bags a little more special and helped her become excited about them.  The minute we were in the car she wanted her first bag.  She played with it for a while, then asked for another, then another, then another.  I got nervous, seeing her go through so many bags in such a short amount of time.  I started to panic a little, thinking, "I should've made 50!  What was I thinking?!  20 isn't enough!"  And then, she slowed down.  She asked for specific bags and played with some activities more than once, sometimes three or four times.  I breathed a sigh of relief and smiled, knowing that the bags were a hit.  My husband surprisingly remarked, "She hasn't said she's bored ONCE on this trip".  I was so pleased.

I'll do a couple of posts in the coming days detailing what went into each bag and where I purchased/found materials for the activities!  I'll also share what worked, what didn't and what I'll be adding for our next road trip. 


  1. Great idea, Miriam! I made several of these for N this year and she loves them! She loves being able to do all of these herself without any assistance from Momma. Great post and great links!

  2. What a fantastic idea, Miriam! I will have to keep this in mind for road trips when my Peanut gets a little bit older.

    Love the blog!

  3. love this idea, thanks for posting! And I think I love your blog too. :)