Free Kid Activities for Those Home from the Coronavirus

Free Activities for Kids Coronavirus

I’m seeing questions like “what do I do now?” “how do I keep my kids entertained and learning all day?” all over Facebook groups.  Here’s some advice that I can share from my years of homeschooling…

(If you saw this post on Facebook you can skip a little and scroll down below the next picture)

 

-Breathe.  Enjoy your kids and don’t try to make every activity educational. Nature walks, board games, and other family activities can be enriching on their own.

– Read. My daughter, who helped me make this list said to write LOTS! Poetry, biographies, books of strange animals, and read anything your kids are interested in or you want them to be.

– Play.  Build a fort and play in it with them.  Play make believe.  Play board games.  Play baseball. Hopscotch, bridge building competitions, make something out of a box, paper airplanes, or make a homemade marble run.

– Draw or paint a card for a loved one who is sick or feeling discouraged. Chances are you know someone who could use a little cheering up. Have them write a note in it or copy a poem if they’re younger.

– Be outside. Hang that bird feeder you’ve been meaning to for months (oh that’s probably just me), draw with chalk, build an outdoor fort with sticks and rubber bands, make a small garden, or lay down and watch the clouds in the day and the stars at night.

-Watch YouTube videos together to learn to do something new together.  Learn to draw, paint, crochet, hang photos on a gallery wall, build a bird house, or install a bidet (that’s also what I’ll be doing! Hey, if toilet paper is scarce, why not give it a try? Affiliate link: Get an inexpensive bidet attachment here)

– Guide kids to play with the toys they already have (and play with them sometimes too!). Legos, Kinex, dolls, etc.  Think old Christmas gifts.

– Cook together.

– Last but not least, reach out to your homeschooling mama friends.  They know your kids and could probably recommend some great personal ideas that would be beneficial to your family.

– You know your kids, enjoy this unexpected time to slow down and be with them.  Do the assigned work that they need to but other than that, don’t stress.  No schedule is needed, no rushing, just being.  You’ve got this!! Oh and yea, it’s okay to stay in pjs longer than usual. 🙂

Free Kids Activities

Here’s my list of ideas that you can do to have fun with your kids while they’re out of school.  Some affiliate links are included.

      1. Plan a treasure hunt (The good old fashioned way is fun but if you happen to have The Family Treasure Hunt Game it’s even easier!)
      2. Practice story telling
      3. Give your kids are supplies and let them go
      4. Plan a meal together
      5. Play Doh
      6. Jigsaw puzzles
      7. Origami
      8. My son wanted me to add “have a conversation.” I love that he values the times where we talk about important things.
      9. Make a craft. Pinterest is your friend.  Check out my Crafts for Kids Pinterst Board.
      10. Hide Easter eggs.  So what if it’s a little early, they’ll be well practiced when Easter comes. 🙂 Color Changing Flower Experiment
      11. Do fun science experiments that you loved as a child. Erupting volcano, disappearing egg shell, color changing flower experiment, etc.
      12. Build a bridge or building (or a city!) with toothpicks and marshmallows.
      13. Find unfinished books of sudoku, word search or crosswords to work on.
      14. Tea parties are a favorite around here.  Add candles, a little poetry or any reading, something warm to drink and something to munch on.  Very relaxing.
      15. Make up your own games together. Board games are super fun and challenging to create.
      16. Make up your own floor games with painters tape.  Hopscotch is only the beginning of the possibilities.  Kids are so creative that I’m sure they’ll have more ideas for this that we will.  If they don’t, building a lot of roads is always a sure fire way to have fun with cars.
      17. Watch virtual tours of museums online.  How cool is that?! You can find all twelve of them by clicking here. Daily Writing Prompts
      18. Write a story together. The Brave Writer (Which I LOVE!) is graciously giving away her Daily Writing Tips (100 prompts) for FREE through the end of April. You can find those by clicking here.
      19. Illustrate the story you wrote together.
      20. The Seattle Symphony will offer “free video broadcasts and livestreams to share strength, comfort and unity with our community in Seattle and around the world during this uncertain time.” You can find that on their Seattle Symphony YouTube channel here.
      21. Go on a nature walk and bring items home.
      22. Create an obstacle course.
      23. Listen to audiobooks together.  Here are some of our favorite family friendly audiobooks.
      24. Make homemade salt dough.
      25. Create a family summer bucket list.
      26. Hoopla/Overdrive/Libby These apps connect to your local library account and depending on where you live offer free ebooks and/or audiobooks.  Free books!
      27. Play dominoes (we love the mexican train game) or set up and knock down dominoes.
      28. HowToHomeSchoolForFree.com has a huge list of free resources to make our own lapbooks. Click here to access those.
      29. Beginning on March 16th, the Metropolitan Opera offers free streaming of it’s Live in HD series for the duration that it’s closed.  The performances, originally captured as live broadcasts in movie theatres worldwide, will begin at 7:30 PM on the company’s website.  The nightly series will be made available for free for 20 hours following the initial stream.  You can find out more information here. Mixing Pink and Purple Slime
      30. Make slime. Relax, vinegar will take it out of almost anything…everything we’ve tried it has. Check out our tried and true recipes: blue ocean slime, cotton candy pink slime, & silver and gold foil slime.
      31. Go and enjoy the ice cream truck when it comes around. (Why yes, it did just come by our neighborhood)
      32. Curriculum Associates has free worksheets for students to work.  You can narrow their vast selection down by grade and subject.  I’m not big on worksheets but they’re handy on occasion. You can find that link here.
      33. Print photos and make a scrapbook or photo album. (Another thing I’ve put off for far too long.)
      34. Play outdoor games together. Bocce ball, badminton, etc.
      35. Toss the frisbee.
      36. Fly a kite…or make a kite and then fly it!
      37. Exercise together.  Maybe try a new form of exercising and watch a YouTube tutorial for it.
      38. Make your own candles if you have the supplies or if you have a candle, a napkin, and a Cricut Mini Easy Press you can make this decorated candle. I still haven’t made a full tutorial of this craft.  That was actually on my to-do list today but I thought this post would be more beneficial to everyone. Tanagrams
      39. Play with tanagrams.
      40. Plan your next vacation.
      41. Depending on your kid’s ages and how sensitive they are, you could research the coronavirus.
      42. AmblesideOnline is a free curriculum using the Charlotte Mason philosophy. I absolutely adore them and use a lot of their suggestions each year. They put together a new great resource for parents who have suddenly found themselves doing school at home.  They have so many freebies and great stuff packed into this page that I think everyone should check it out.  I don’t want to copy anything from them so head over there and see it all.  ****If you click one link on this page, let this be it.****  Go here.
      43. If they can already write well, see if they can write with their non-dominant hand.  Or backwards, or upside, or backwards and upside down.  My amazing husband can do this and it blows my mind.
      44. Watch and listen for birds and see if you can identify any. iNaturalist app
      45. Use the iNaturalist app to identify any mushrooms, plants, or animals you may see while exploring outside but don’t know anything about. (Here’s the link to it for Apple devices and Google devices.
      46. Measure things with a ruler, or tape measure.  (Maybe if you’ve been wanting to repaint a room measure and figure to see how much paint you’ll need)
      47. Kahn Academy offers many free classes online that you could take advantage of.
      48. Tapestry of Grace is a curriculum you can use from Kindergarten through Grade 12.  I’ve heard that it’s great for kids of multiple ages to study together too.  They offer 2  free 3 week samples on their website—one covering Ancient Egypt and the other covering Colonial America.
      49. Teach your kids about money, using a budget, the economy.  There is so much I wish I learned at a young age and this is a great chance to instill good ideals about money.
      50. Readtheory.org is a free program that tests your child’s current reading level and then generates short passages with quizzes.  It will track their progress, and they can even earn badges. This is great for elementary school all the way through grade 12.
      51. Make a family Book of Centuries.  I’ve wanted to make one of these for years but my profectionist side held me back until this year.  It’s such a great way for kids (my myself!!) to make connections across time periods.  Simply Charlotte Mason has amazing resources for the Charlotte Mason mama and I adore all that I’ve used from them…and I hope to use more this coming year!  They thoroughly explain what a book of centuries is, how to use it, and have a free printable to get you started.
      52. Make a rain stick or sensory bottle.
      53. Work together to complete a household task you’ve been putting off.  I don’t know about you but this could keep my family busy for months. Nature Journal
      54. Give nature journaling a try.  This is a picture of my daughter’s entry this week.
      55. Scholastic is developing fabulous videos and worksheets for Pre-K-6th+.  From what I’ve glanced at it looks very nice and free.  So far they only have 5 days worth of content but are working on 15 more days worth of content.  You can check those out here.
      56. The San Diego Zoo has a well organized kid’s section with well produced animal videos, animal crafts and coloring sheets. You can see more for yourself here.
      57. You can explore Yellowstone National Park online by virtually touring some of the main attractions around the park.  I’m personally very excited about this one!  I’ve always wanted to visit there and this will help me feel like I’m there.   You can check it out here.
      58. You can explore the surface of Mars with the Curiosity Rover.  They’re updating it now but you can still view the 360 mode and it is incredible!  I can’t wait to show it to my kids tomorrow!  You can see it for yourself here.
      59. Khan Academy Kids is a free app designed for kids up through the 1st grade.  It has engaging songs, lessons, and stories to read!
      60. If you have a clear night sky you’ll want to play with the free app, Night Sky.  It lets you point your phone any direction toward the sky and helps you be able to recognize the constellations in that are visible in that part of the sky.  You can pull stars and planets out of the sky to explore in more detail too!
      61. I just learned about this YouTube channel but from the couple of videos I watched, it looks like a good one. The Artful Parent creates simple but intriguing art projects for kids.  These might be a little more involved than you’re prepared for so screen the videos before watching them with your kids.  You can see their channel here.
      62. If you want to infuse your house with some fun kid’s music that doesn’t drive you bonkers….I have the miracle solution for you!  Justin Robert’s & the Not Ready for Naptime Players are fantastic. I own all of their cds and have given away probably 20 of his cds as gifts through the years.  The music is catchy and the lyrics are insightful, witty, and will make you look back at your own childhood fondly.  I can’t recommend him enough.  You can check them out here on YouTube or buy their cds on Amazon…oh and not all but several of his songs are on Amazon’s Alexa.
      63. Babble Dabble Do is a Youtube channel with a bunch of art, science and upcycling projects.  I think my kids will love their battery powered ballerina.  All the videos I’ve seem are well done and the channel provides links to further instructions and a few printables.

 

I’ll keep adding to this list and I would love to hear your recommendations.  If you’ve found this post helpful please pin it or share it so others may enjoy it too.  Thank you!

Free Kid Activities Coronavirus

 

Family-Friendly Ford Flex Features

This post is brought to you by FullertonFord.com.

The Ford Flex is a pretty solid option for a family vehicle. This popular Ford model vehicle has been used by families who enjoy traveling, have larger family units, and simply want a reliable way to get from Point A to Point B. If you’re in the market for a new family vehicle and are curious about the family-friendly features offered by Ford Flex, then continue reading to learn more about this vehicle.

Family-Friendly Ford Flex Features

Family-Friendly Ford Flex Features

Reasonable Price

The Ford Flex has some pretty awesome pricing for the advanced features you get. Ford was smart with this model that comes in SE, SEL, and Limited options. Each option provides you the most bang for your buck. This makes Ford Flex a reasonably priced family vehicle for the features.

Many Optional Luxuries

I know you may not be thinking about luxuries when it comes to a family-friendly vehicle, but these matters with the Ford Flex. Some of the optional luxuries with Ford Flex include rain-sensing wipers, ventilated front seats, and second-row captain chairs for maximum comfort and safety.

Advanced Flexibility

Since the Ford Flex is shaped similar to a wagon, you know those old family wagon cars you saw in the ’80s driving down the road?! Yes, Ford Flex has advanced flexibility options that you’d typically get in a wagon-style vehicle. With amenity add-ons like a refrigerator and a comfortable third-row seat, this is by far one of the most flexible family vehicles to suit any size family needs.

Generous Cargo Space

Let’s face it, going on family road trips or doing some homeschooling on the road means that you need to have generous space to store supplies. The Ford Flex has generous cargo space allowing your whole family to store their needs out of sight and out of the way.

Safety Features for Family

With safety being a number one concern for families looking for a new family vehicle, Ford Flex has some safety features that will ease your worries. From an optional inflatable second-row seat to ABS, stability control, and multiple airbags, this is a family vehicle that’s equipped to keep your whole family safe during your time in the Ford Flex.

These are just some of the family-friendly features Ford Flex offers. From optional safety additions to add-ons for ease of living on the road during road trips to everything in between, the Ford Flex knows families and wants you to be safe. I hope that this list of family-friendly Ford Flex features has inspired you to take a peek at Ford Flex as an option for your next family vehicle.

How to Not Hate Exercising

Exercising can be a stressful idea to many people. It’s like we know that daily exercise is important but some of those tasks that we find recommended for our daily exercise regimen are ridiculous. Hating exercise is an easy way to get out of maintaining your mission to incorporate exercise into your life.

How to Not Hate Exercising

Start Small

Create an exercise plan that is small. If you really hate exercising then you won’t want to spend an hour every day doing the tasks to get fit. Find a small, simple workout routine that will help you to at least tolerate exercising.

Repeat Daily

Repeat your small routine every day for two weeks. This helps establish the routine and encourage you to continue on as you’re not pushing yourself too physically yet. Two weeks should be a reasonable time to work this small routine into a habit.

Add More

After a couple of weeks have passed add some more tasks into your exercise routine. Try to pick exercises that you enjoy at some level. This helps to keep your mind encouraged on pushing through versus absolutely hating your daily exercise routine.

Play Music

Create a music playlist that keeps your motivation up and your body wanting to move. You should know what genre of music will work best to inspire you to continue on with your daily exercising routine. Change up the music playlist if you grow tired of the original one you created.

Focus on Feeling

Rather than using exercise to look differently, focus on how you want to feel. Exercise is usually something people do to look different but they start to hate the work. When you redirect your focus to how you want to feel, exercise becomes less of a chore as it makes you feel good almost immediately.

Eat Healthier

When you try to eat healthier snack options your mind will be healthier which will help you avoid the thought of hating your daily exercise routine. Eating healthier snacks like veggie sticks throughout your day will help inspire your body and mind to feel good all of the time.

Exercising doesn’t have to be a chore, you can use these tips I shared today to help achieve success in your mission to exercise on a regular basis. When you incorporate music into your routine, start small and work towards feeling better versus looking better, you will soon find that you don’t hate exercising so much anymore.

Why Road Trips are a Good Idea for Families

If you’re looking for a good excuse to go on a family road trip then you’ll enjoy my reasons why this is an excellent idea for families. Today I’m featuring my top favorite reasons why road trips are a good idea for families. This fun-filled option to travel with kids is an excellent way to expand your child’s experiences and intelligence among other things. Enjoy my list of reasons why I think every family should get out there and go on a family road trip this year.  This post is brought to you by FlemingtonDodgeChryslerJeep.com.

Why Road Trips are a Good Idea for Families

Why Road Trips are a Good Idea for Families

Provides Relaxation

Both adults and children these days are full of stress and anxiety. The world is a fast-moving place and daily life can consume even the most optimistic people. Going on a family road trip with kids will provide your family with a much-needed break to get some relaxation away from the hustle and bustle of real-life.

Strengthens Family Bond

Being out on the road with your kids is an excellent way to strengthen your family bond. Spending quality time together discussing new sights and other adventures you experience during your family road trip helps solidify your family bond.

Making Memories

While you can make memories at home, going on a road trip with kids provides a new opportunity to make memories together. There are so many things a family can do on a road trip with kids. You can dine at a new place, see historical landmarks, and experience fun on the road to make new memories.

 Encourages Patience

Going on a family road trip with kids helps establish a deeper level of patience for both kids and adults. Your kids may be antsy to get to the next destination, but soon learn that it takes time to arrive at each location. This helps your kids learn a deeper level of patience that can be used in other areas of life.  (Check out our list of Audiobooks for Road Trips)

Getting Out of Comfort Zone

Kids who grow up going on family road trips are more apt to get outside of their comfort zone. You’ll be experiencing new places, new stops, and perhaps dealing with mishaps along the route. This all provides your kid with experience in getting out of their comfort zone. This skill is a much-needed skill to encourage your kids to live a very fulfilling life and to reach for their dreams in the future.

These are just some of the reasons why road trips are a good idea for families. If you haven’t gone on a road trip with kids, I highly recommend you give it a try. A family road trip helps you getaway to relax, have fun, and make some new memories together before your kids are all grown up.

Kid-Friendly Car Organizing Tips

If you’re tired of being stressed out every time you get into the family car, then you’ll enjoy my kid-friendly car organizing tips. It seems like every mom has this car full of unorganized chaos from the kids. Traveling to and from school, events, and other kids’ appointments mean that the kids wreak havoc upon our family vehicle.  This post is brought to you by Easterns.com.

You’ll be excited to learn that you don’t have to stress out about having an unorganized mess of kid stuff in your car anymore. Today, I’m sharing some tips to help moms everywhere take control of the family vehicle and get organized right now.

Kid-Friendly Car Organizing Tips

Kid-Friendly Car Organizing Tips

Use Suction Cup Shower Caddies

This brilliant kid-friendly car organizing tip may not be suitable for all family vehicles, but if you have a spot to suction onto then you’ll enjoy using the suction cup shower caddies to get your car organized. This is an excellent organization hack for family vehicles that have kids’ art supplies or small items to keep kids entertained during family trips.

Keep Supplies in Glove Box or Trunk

Most family vehicles have decent cargo space, so be sure to utilize that space to keep handy dandy cleaning supplies on hand. You’ll want to keep supplies like a First Aid kit, baby wipes, hand sanitizer and perhaps some extra napkins on hand in your glove box or trunk cargo space. This will help you remove any immediate spill or mishap that occurs during your family road trip adventures.

Enlist the Kids

Most kids are old enough to take the trash out when you arrive home or keep their belongings in an organized area of the family vehicle. Make a rule that your kids must take out what they brought in. If they tend to keep supplies in the car for long trips, then make sure they each have a designated spot within your family vehicle so the kids can pick up after themselves when you arrive home.

At the end of the day, keeping your car organized in a kid-friendly way is all about utilizing organization hacks such as the shower caddy suction cup containers, and cargo space for supplies as well as enforcing rules that your kids can certainly follow. It may take 2-3 weeks to fully have this new habit developed fully to keep your family vehicle organized, but once you establish this routine, you will no longer stress out each time you head out on a family trip in the family vehicle.

Live With Less Challenge 2020

Declutter Live With Less Challenge

Are you feeling overwhelmed with stuff?  It seems that no matter how much I donate and purge beforehand, my home feels overstuffed after each Christmas.  I need this challenge for myself as much as I want to help encourage others!

Here are the Live With Less Challenge details:

Our first Live With Less Challenge of 2020 is going to be a fun one!  Each day you remove the number of items that corresponds with the date.  1st day, you remove one item, 2nd day, you remove two items, and so on and so forth.  By the end of the month you’ll have removed almost 500 items from your home!! 496 to be exact…if I did my math right. 🙂  Some days will be easier than other but as those of you who have participated in past challenges can attest, it’s surprising how much stuff we have that we don’t really need.  This is a great way to start a new year and I hope you’ll join us in our Live With Less Facebook group to share pictures of your progress and/or the items you’re getting rid of.  Click here to join.

In years past we’ve had a cash giveaway and I’ve kept up with everyone’s pictures but with our group now pushing 7,000 members it’s just not feasible anymore.  Even without the cash prize, I still hope you’ll join in the decluttering and in sharing your photos to help motivate others.  I can’t tell you how the pictures shared have motivated me.  Knowing you’re not alone swimming in clutter, seeing the progress others have made, hearing ideas for organizing, finding places to donate to, and so much more.  Truly, that group is an amazing group of people and I’m thankful to be apart of it.

FAQ

Q: Do I have to throw the things away.
A: Absolutely not!  You can gift, donate, recycle, repurpose, or throw away.  Try to let throwing away be your last option if possible.  Be careful not to get stuck on wanting to repurpose or repair things though.  It’s easy to save things for “one day” and that day never comes.

Q: Are you sure there won’t be a cash prize this year?
A: Yes, there won’t be this year but maybe I’ll giveaway a smaller gift card to an active participant in our Facebook group.

Q: Is it okay if I post in the group daily?
A: Absolutely!  To keep your progress organized you can post all of your pictures in the comments of your first post….or not.  It could be fun to see all of the progress you’ve made this month in one place but you’re not obligated to.  Just share away.

Q: Do you have a list of easy things to start with?
A: As it turns out, we do!  Here’s our list of 200 Things to Let Go Of.

If you have any other questions please feel free to comment below and ask.  I hope you’ll join us and invite a friend to join you too!

If you’re looking for some more Live With Less encouragement check out these resources (and don’t forget our Facebook group). 🙂

 

 

 

Easy Ways to Calculate Your New Car Budget

Buying a new car entails so much more than I previously thought. From figuring out how much “car” you can afford, to determining what type of car will work best for you, the list of proactive steps to take before you sign on the dotted line seems endless. While yes, many steps come into play when buying your new car, the biggest step I want to help you with today is setting a budget for your new car purchase. If you’re heading to the local dealership and want some tips for how much you can spend on that new car purchase, then continue reading for some tips to help you set a new car budget with ease.  This post is brought to you by Butlerchryslerdodgejeep.com.

Easy Ways to Calculate Your New Car Budget

Easy Ways to Calculate Your New Car Budget

Consider Total Price

The total price of your new car goes beyond what the selling price is for your new car. You’ll want to take into consideration the total price that includes the sticker price, the title, insurance, and other fees involved with buying a new car. You can easily estimate some of those costs beforehand to get a general idea of what a new car may end up costing to use to calculate your new car budget.

Review Expenses

Take a moment to review your income and expenses in the house. This is an important step in calculating your new car budget because you can’t spend money on a new car if you don’t have any money. Take a moment to figure out what you can remove from your current household expense list to make room for a new car payment and what amount is left over after all other household expenses have been deducted from your household income.

Calculate Monthly Payment

Remember that your new car is probably going to carry a hefty monthly payment, so be sure you know how much the monthly payment will be on a new car. You can easily estimate a monthly car payment by talking to your local dealership about their current rates and pricing options. Consider getting a list of approximate monthly payment options to help you calculate your new car budget.

Down Payment or Trade-In

When you work to calculate your new car budget, you’ll want to take into consideration whether or not you’re putting a down payment on the new car or trading in an older vehicle. Each of these things will be taken off the total price of your new car purchase. Have a discussion with the sales rep at your local dealership to see what types of down payment options or trade-in options they have to help get your new car budget calculated.

At the end of the day, buying a new car can be stressful. This is a new expense that you’ll be adding into your already packed full household expense list. That’s why I highly recommend you follow the simple steps I shared today to calculate your new car budget. This will ensure you can get a new car without breaking the bank or added more stress into your life.

How to Create a Car Travel Journal With Your Kids

Many parents enjoy traveling with their kids to make memories (road trips can be amazing!! Check out our list of Great American Road Trips), but what are you doing to capture those moments? I think that we often feel our kids will hang onto these memories that we’re making as we travel around with them to see new places, but the reality is sometimes you need a journal to truly capture those traveling moments as a family. If you’re looking for a new journaling idea for homeschool or perhaps you simply want to create an awesome travel journal with your kids, then here are some tips to help you make this happen!  This post is brought to you by Pearsontoyotascion.com.

How to Create a Travel Journal With Your Kids

How to Create a Travel Journal With Your Kids

– Let Your Kids Make A Journal

While you can purchase a travel journal for kids online, it’s always more memorable to have your kids make their own journal. Gather up the three-ring binder and lined notebook paper. Put together a binder of journaling printables with lined notepad paper to provide many options for travel journaling.

– Bring The Tools

Using a small flexible pencil case bring along scissors, markers, crayons, pencils and any other journaling tools that your kids may need to document their memories in this travel journey during your family road trips.  You could store this in the glove compartment or have a special bin in the car that holds all of their supplies.

– Lead by Example

Keep a car travel journal of your own.  We love to document how many cars from different states we see on trips, how traffic was, and all the fun or extraordinary events that take place.

– Encourage Writing

While most adults enjoy reflecting about their day at the end of the night, many kids aren’t quite in that mindset. Encourage your kids to write in their journal during the day when their memories are close to their heart, so that they can truly journal the most from their traveling day.

– Don’t Micro-Manage

While you may want to micro-manage the process of journaling, this is not the time nor place to do so. Allowing your kids to journal during your travel adventures is a great way to let your kids show you their best grammar and vocabulary knowledge, but you can review that later on after your vacation.  It’s so hard to not do this, it’s a struggle with every. single. journal entry but it has to be done.  They need the freedom to express themselves without worrying about spelling every last word correctly…besides, it would be pretty annoying for you to spell every other word to them. 🙂

– Offer Prompts

Some kids aren’t equipped with the skills to come up with creative things to journal about during your time traveling, so consider giving your kids prompts each day during your time on the road. Don’t force your kids to use the prompts, simply have them written down each day to help them think deeper.

Having your kids create a travel journal will be a wonderful way to help them improve their grammar, vocabulary and handwriting skills all the while capturing their favorite family moments of your family travel events.

What is routine maintenance on a car?

Have you recently bought a new family car? Maybe you already have a family car that’s treated your family well over the years but now you want to figure out what some of your routine maintenance should be for your car. Knowing what routine maintenance you should have performed on your car will help you extend your car’s lifespan, thus saving you thousands of dollars in repair fees.  This post is brought to you by Reedmantollnissanofdrexelhill.com.

What is routine maintenance on a car?

What is routine maintenance on a car?

– Peek at your Owner’s Manual

The owner’s manual for your car will lay out all of the routine maintenance for your car. This includes when is the right time to get an oil change as well as any additional maintenance recommendations for your car. It’s always good to become familiar with your owner’s manual so that you’re car savvy.

– Change Oil and Filter

It used to be recommended that you get an oil and oil filter change every three months or 3,000 miles, but times have changed and cars have advanced. Some newer cars can go 5,000 up to 10,000 miles before they need an oil change, so check your owner’s manual or ask the dealership where you purchased your car.

– Check Your Tires

Every month you should check your tires to make sure that there’s no major wear and tear, the tire pressure is up to par with what your tires say to have the air pressure at, and the tread is still where it should be. Properly inflated tires help with gas mileage as well as to reduce the chance of a blowout. (Check out our post on how to Save Money on Tires)

– Check Your Fluids

There are so many different fluids a car needs to function properly. From your windshield wiper fluid to your brake fluid, power steering fluid and oil as well as transmission fluid. Check your owner’s manual to see what fluids you have and check them regularly.

– Examine Belts and Hoses

If you feel comfortable with this step, you should examine all belts and hoses under the hood. This is to make sure you don’t have any leaks or loose connections that could cause a future leak. If you’re not comfortable, your local car dealership would be more than happy to assist.

These are just some of the most routine maintenance recommendations for most cars. If you’re not sure how to proceed with any of these routine maintenance tips you could also have your car dealership’s service department handle these small tasks to ensure your car stays running smoothly for the long term.

Top 5 Survival Tips for Holiday Road Trips

Are you planning a holiday road trip with your family? Going on a road trip during the holiday season will honestly bring more precautions to take and things to think about. The holiday season is one of the busiest travel seasons of the year and that’s why I wanted to feature a few of the top survival tips for holiday road trips today. I want your family to enjoy your next road trip during the holiday season and stay safe at the same time.  This post is brought to you by ZeiglerChryslerDodge.com.

Tips for Holiday Road Trips

Top 5 Survival Tips for Holiday Road Trips

Get a First Aid and Emergency Kit

Step one to surviving holiday road trips is to have a first aid kit and car emergency kit on hand. You can easily purchase these two items online and have them delivered or go to your local retailer that sells items like this. You’ll want to have band-aids, ointment, and hand warmers as well as road flares and flashlights with batters to say safe during your holiday road trip.

Bring Entertainment

Remember to pack up enough entertainment options for those kids! Having kids in tow during your holiday road trip can get rather distracting if you don’t bring enough items to keep your kids entertained. I highly recommend you print coloring pages, bring crayons, download songs and movies along with a tablet or smartphone that the kids can use during your holiday road trip. You could even bring some lessons for homeschooling your kids on the road.

Plan Your Route

Listen, it may sound fun to be spontaneous during your holiday road trip with kids, but let’s face it, traveling with kids can get a little overwhelming. That’s why I highly recommend you plan your route well in advance. This ensures you have time for rest stops to use the restrooms and stretch breaks along your route during holiday road trip travel with kids. Don’t forget about some must-see locations that your kids are interested in, let them pick a couple of spots on the route.

Pack Snacks

Kids can get really cranky when they haven’t eaten enough food. That’s why it’s a must to pack some snacks and drinks for the entire family. This will help you and the kids survive a long holiday road trip together without having to deal with the grumpy moods that can come when you’re hungry. Snacks will also help the younger kids take a nap, as they will feel sleepy when their bellies are full. Be sure to pack healthier snack options, not sugar treats, or you may have some restless kids in the backseat.

Be Prepared to Sit in Traffic

Lastly, remember that this is a busy travel season for families. That means you’re apt to end up in long lines of traffic on the more popular routes. Try to plan your route around any major travel portions of the road so that you won’t have to sit in traffic as often, but always prepare to sit in traffic. Talk to your kids before you venture out on a long holiday road trip so that they know there may be some downtime during heavy traffic moments.

These are just my top 5 survival tips for holiday road trips with kids. Each of these survival tips will help you enjoy a long road trip with kids during one of the busiest travel seasons of the year.