For the past two months, we've had a trip to my hometown planned, 7 hours away from steelerland. We were going to use the trip as an opportunity to get some professional photos done of the girls. The photos were going to be shot in the park where I played as a wee lass, my mom & sister would be there, it was going to be great. Well a few days before our planned departure date, husband told me that he wouldnt be able to go because of a deadline for the new company. I wrestled with this, going back & forth between going and not going. I decided that I would go solo, just me and my little ladies.
The trip was great, we just got back yesterday. It was HOT for the photo shoot, which made for some sweaty and cranky girls. I am sure that Racheal got some great shots. I am still kicking myself in the butt for not packing any skirts or dresses, I had to wear pants for the photos, UGH jeans & heat do not mix well.
The trip was wonderful and I got to see some of my best friends and of course my family.
A solo roadtrip with twins is possible. Here are some tips, or things that I did that worked well for us.
1. Be flexible & take your time. I factored in a whole day to drive there and another day to drive back. I was able to take my time and stop when the girls needed a break.
2. Pack a picnic-I packed snacks and fruit in a cooler as well as a picnic blanket. We were able to stop and we have a picnic and let the girls play and stretch their legs.
3. Take the scenic route- I had two options. 1 was a turnpike with large rest stops with lots of amenities but the exits are further apart. The other option meant small rest areas without restaurants but more exits. I chose the 2nd option. The small rest areas meant green space that could be used for picnics or to take the girls for a walk in the stroller. Some stops were downright pretty, with scenic overlooks and lots of pretty flowers and trees.
4. Bring toys & books- At one stop, I pulled out some blocks that I had packed for the girls. They were able to play in the back of the van while I got lunch ready. I also had books and small toys, like a play phone, that the girls could play with while in their seats.
5. Timing is everything- I left at 5am on my way there and 7am on my way home. The girls usually sleep to 7-8am so leaving at 5am I was hoping that I would get a few hours with some sleeping babies. It worked this time. I was able to drive 3 hours before they woke up and needed to eat. On the way home, they didnt sleep as much but I fed them before we left so they were in a good mood. Think about your child and their sleeping pattern. Perhaps leaving at night would be the best option for you. That is what we did when they were 4 months old and went on a roadtrip. We left at bedtime and the girls just slept except for a nursing session.
I doubt I would do the same thing now because the girls are older and more aware of their surroundings.
Traffic is also something to consider. Leaving at 5am meant I would avoid rush hour in my hometown. My girls hate traffic almost as much as I do and usually scream when stuck in it.
6. By any means necessary. With this I mean, try any trick necessary to get through the trip. While I didnt use a portable DVD player, that doesnt me I would be opposed to one. If 15 minutes of elmo will calm down your child and help you concentrate on driving, then go for it.
7. Dont jeopardize safety- If your child is crying/screaming and distracting you while driving, PULL OVER! Safety is the most important thing. This ties back to #1. If you take your time, you will have the time and flexibity to stop when you need to.
I hope this helps.