December 8, 2010

How to Keep Traveling for the Holidays Stress Free

A few days before you leave, tell your children where you’ll be going and how you’ll be getting there.

On the day you’ll be leaving outline exactly what will be happening.Even very young children feel less anxious when they’re given explanations of how things work even if they don’t understand all the details. If you’ll be flying you can say, “First we’ll drive to the airport, then we’ll go through security, and then we’ll get on the plane and fly to Grandma’s.”

If you’re flying take along a “busy bag,” filled with books, deck of cards, silly putty, spiral pad of paper and crayons/markers, pipe cleaners, MP3 player or iPod, with familiar music and headphones. You can even make a puppet from a barf bag. But don’t break out the toys before you have to - be creative.

Traveling by car can be made less stressful by playing games, whether electronic hand-held games or guessing games played by the entire family. Stopping for breaks also may help.

Bring some snacks and pack them where they are easy to reach. Freeze dried fruits, crackers, and dry cereal all travel well.

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