Tag Archives: travel

Family Road Trip Essentials – What to Do & Pack for a Great Road Trip

July 20, 2016

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Road Trip Essentials Last week, my hubby, daughter and I went on a great road trip from Los Angeles to Albuquerque, New Mexico. (See our fun little family road trip video below)

We’re evidently not the only ones hitting the road this summer.  With gas prices so low this year, (AAA reports that travelers hitting the road will pay the lowest summer gas prices since 2005), more travelers than ever are hitting the road.

If you’re hitting the road with your family, you want to make sure you’ve got everything you need.  We got you covered.  Here’s your Ultimate Family Road Trip Checklist and Packing List.14533913873_0d5025b02d_z

2-4 Weeks Before You Go On a Trip

  • Ensure that your car battery is in good conditioning
  • Check your vehicle’s engine oil level and its color
  • Check the vehicle’s coolant
  • Get any major repairs done to the vehicle
  • If you don’t have a car or will be driving a rental car, make a reservation to rent one.

1 Week Before You Go On a Trip

  • Check the tire pressure
  • Check the vehicle’s air filter
  • Buy a road atlas or free maps from AAA if you’re a member
  • Buy snacks and first aid kit supplies
  • Check your Vehicle’s Load Capacity

1 Day Before the Trip

  • Check GPS for travel suggestions and traffic or detour warnings
  • Prepare a map as a backup
  • Keep your mobile phone fully charged in case of emergency
  • Check your car insurance policy and carry the valid proof of insurance in the car
  • Pack all the items you will need from the Ultimate Road Trip Packing List for Families (below)

The Ultimate Road Trip Packing List for Families:

Health & Safety

  • Bandaids in various sizes
  • First Aid kit
  • Flushable wet wipes
  • Extra Diapers (if necessary)
  • Benadryl for surprise allergies in new places
  • A bucket with several plastic grocery bags tucked inside for surprise “travel tummy” scenarios
  • Sunblock
  • Children’s Tylenol
  • Tylenol or other headache medicine for adults
  • Heartburn meds for adults
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Tweezers
  • Large scissors and/or Seat Belt Cutting Tool

General Organization:

  • Change of clothes for each kid, easily accessible in case of spills or sickness
  • Pens & Paper
  • Sunglasses by each kids’ seat
  • Window shades for babies
  • Travel pillows
  • Blankets (for when you can’t agree on air conditioning levels, or for impromptu picnics at rest areas)
  • Diaper/pull ups for all kids up through age 5 just in case
  • Umbrellas
  • Car Phone chargers
  • Auxiliary Cables
  • Towel: can be used as seat cover, cleaning tool, picnic blanket, and more
  • Slippers: more comfy than shoes for a long drive
  • Cash in varying denominations
  • Coins for tolls
  • Batteries &/or chargers for any devices you bring

Food

  • Bags for garbage
  • Re-usable water bottles
  • Individually packaged, crumb-free snacks (e.g., bite-sized goldfish crackers)
  • Hard to bruise fruits (e.g., apples, berries) and/or fruit roll-ups or fruit leathers
  • Trail Mix

Entertainment

  • Playlist of family music (you can find great playlists on Pandora or Spotify)
  • Headphones for each kid
  • iPad or other tablet with movies & educational games
  • External battery charger for digital devices
  • Audio books that are good for the whole family (e.g., Harry Potter or Narnia)
  • Swimsuits and towels for the whole family in one easy to grab tote bag
  • Jump ropes and balls for exercise breaks at rest stops

Monick HalmMonick Paul Halm is the Chief Creative Officer at the Checklist Mom.  She has made it her mission to empower women and moms to thrive in their lives, families, and careers.  She’s a busy mom and stepmom of 3, certified life and career coach, author, speaker, and real estate investor.  She’s a wearer of many hats, and juggler of many duties and loves connecting with our moms.  You can connect with her on the Checklist Mom Facebook Page and on twitter as @thereikicoach.

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The Perfect Pleasurable Flight Checklist – 52 Checklists Project Week 17

May 3, 2016

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10 Items to Ensure a Pleasurable Flight

I have been flying a lot lately for work and I’ve realized that flying in coach class can be downright unpleasant if you’re not well prepared.  The airlines seem to be making the seats smaller and smaller and offering less and less amenities on flights.  If you’re flying, and you don’t want to have a miserable experience, you have to come prepared.  As I was flying last Wednesday, I created my checklist: 10 Things to Make Flying More Pleasurable.  These are 10 “must-have” items that will greatly enhance your flying experience.       

10 Things to Make Flying More Pleasurable #52checklistsproject 

    • Neck Pillow – a neck pillow is a life saver – especially if you happen to be in the middle or aisle and want to catch a little snooze.
    • Water Bottle – it’s very important to drink water during flights.  The air in the plane is very dehydrating and drinking water makes you less susceptible to germs.  You can’t bring a full water bottle through security, but you can carry an empty bottle and fill it up on the other side of security or purchase a bottle of water at an airport shop.
    • Chewing gum – As you’re ascending or descending the pressure changes can be uncomfortable on your ears.  Chewing gum can help equalize the pressure and relieve discomfort, although it’s not the gum itself that helps. The actions of chewing and swallowing helps to equalize pressure and easing both the stress on your inner ear and the associated discomfort. I like using gum, but sucking on candy or drinking (remember your water bottle) can help as well.
    • Fun  Magazine  – The airplane is one of the only times I get to read fun magazines (other than in doctor waiting rooms), so I love getting two or three magazines to flip through during a flight.  This definitely adds to the pleasure quotient of a flight for me.
    • Great Book – a great book can also make the hours fly (no pun intended).  For me, I like a story with a great plot that I can’t put down.  If you want some suggestions, you can check out this article on 11 Mesmerizing Books for Long Flights or my previous checklist of 10 Books to Read in 2016.
    • A Friend – Travel is always better when you have a friend or loved one you can talk to.  My favorite travel partner is my husband, and I’m lucky that most of the time I fly he’s right beside me.  When I travel alone, it’s the perfect opportunity to meet a new friend and if I’m feeling sociable I’ll befriend a seat-mate.
    • Headphones – The good thing is that many airplanes now have individual screens for each seat where you can pick the movies and shows you want to watch or the music you want to listen to.  The bad thing is that they no longer hand out headphones.  You bring your own or you have to pay for a crappy set. It’s best to bring your own.
    • Snacks – The airplane meal, especially if you’re flying domestically, seems to have gone the way of the Dodo Bird.  It’s best to bring food and snacks with you on the flight.  This is true, especially if you’re flying with kids.
    • Eye Mask – if you’re flying at night and want to sleep an eye mask is perfect for blocking out light, and last but not least:
    • Ear Plugs – again, if you’re trying to get some sleep, ear plugs will help block out the noise around and promote some shut eye. 

 

Those are the 10 items on my checklist to have a pleasurable flight.  What is on your list? How do you make flying more pleasurable?  snappa-1462323561

 

Monick HalmMonick Paul Halm is the Chief Creative Officer at the Checklist Mom.  She has made it her mission to empower women and moms to thrive in their lives, families, and careers.  She’s a busy mom and stepmom of 3, certified life and career coach, author, speaker, and real estate investor.  She’s a wearer of many hats, and juggler of many duties and loves connecting with our moms.  You can connect with her on the Checklist Mom Facebook Page and on twitter as @thereikicoach.

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10 Fun Spring Break Activities to Do With Your Kids

March 23, 2016

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Spring Break is upon us!  Are you wondering what to do with your kids?  If so, we have the answer for you.  Here are 10 fun family friendly activities (many of which are free) that you can do with your kids this Spring Break.  Read below to also get your free downloadable Family Travel Checklist PDF.

1. Road Trip! Go someplace within easy driving distance – like a nearby city or a national park. This year is the 100th anniversary of the U.S. National Parks and there are probably some amazing parks in easy driving distance of wherever you are.CLM Travel Packing Checklist

If you’re going on a trip, you  to make sure that you pack wisely.  Click Here to get your free downloadable Travel Packing Checklist PDF and make sure that you remember everything.

2. Staycate. Be a tourist in your own city and visit spots in your city that you or your kids have never been to. Though I’ve lived in Los Angeles for 15 years there are still plenty of places – new and old – I’d love to discover and bring my kids. I’m sure there are interesting spots near you to bring your kids to discover.

3. Go Camping. Pack up the tent and sleeping bags and take your family camping. There’s nothing like campfires, open air, and no cell phone reception to bring a family closer together.

4. Volunteer. Volunteering is always a wonderful activity to do as a family. If you’d like some help to find kid-friendly volunteer opportunities, you can check out the blog post I wrote on How to Find Kid Friendly Volunteer Opportunities.

5. Plant a Vegetable Garden. As the ground thaws, it’s the perfect time for planting. Early spring is good for planting hardy and semi-hardy vegetables like spinach, kale, carrots, beets, broccoli and leeks. You’ll enjoy eating your harvest and the kids will love digging in the dirt with you.

6. Spring Clean. Are you thinking “wait… cleaning isn’t fun. How am I going to get the kids to do that?!” The answer is make it into a game. Race to see who can pick up the most items off the floor or gather the most dust on a cloth. Pretend you’re all Cinderella or the seven dwarves and sing while you work. Anything can be fun if you do it together and you play.

7. Get crafty. Pull out your craft supplies, surf Pinterest for ideas, and get crafty with the kids.

8. Go Spring Skiing. Many mountains still have snow, and the slopes are probably not as crowded as during the winter holidays. This break is a perfect time for spring skiing.

9. Hit the Beach. Drive or fly to the nearest beach and enjoy the sun, surf, and sand. After experiencing winter, getting to the ocean is one of spring break’s greatest joys.

10. Pajama Days. Spend the whole day in PJs watching movies and reading. There are few things I love more than this. After the frantic pace of our usual lives, one of the greatest luxuries is to do nothing at all.

Those are our 10 ideas for enjoying spring break with your family. What are you doing for spring break?  Share in the comments below.what will you and your family do for spring break?

Monick HalmMonick Paul Halm is the Chief Creative Officer at the Checklist Mom.  She has made it her mission to empower women and moms to thrive in their lives, families, and career choices.  She’s a busy mom of 3, certified life and career coach, author, speaker, and real estate investor.  She’s a wearer of many hats, and juggler of many duties and loves connecting with our moms.  You can connect with her on the Checklist Mom Facebook Page and on twitter as @thereikicoach.

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