20 Family Friendly Trunk or Treat Ideas

Trunk or treating is our favorite way to do trick or treating.  It’s safer and I just LOVE the trunk or treat decorations.  I hope you’ll enjoy this list I’ve gathered of 20 family friendly trunk or treat ideas.  This post is brought to you by Zeigler Chrysler Dodge Ram.

1.  Candyland!! I love this one so much!

 

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My wife got that 1st place trunk #TrunkRTreat

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2.  Is it ever too early to start celebrating Christmas?

 

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Had such a great time tonight! #TrunkRTreat #ChristmasInOctober

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3.  The car is dressed like a dog and the dog is dressed like a car.  Cute!

 

4. Angry Birds

 

 

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Super exhausted, but well worth it! • • • #halloween #trunkrtreat #spokanefirst #jesusfirstchurch

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5. Dino Dig.  I know my kids would love this one!!

 

6. Stranger Things theme.  Spooky and cute all in one!

 

7.  Star Wars

 

 

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My parents are cool. #trunkrtreat #halloween #trickortreat #starwars #leia #jedi #maytheforthbewithyou

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8. Oooh, the princess and the frog.  A gigantic car-sized frog!  How fun!

 

 

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The Princess and her Frog. Come to out to Westview 6-8. #trunkrtreat

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9.  The Great Pumpkin!  Oh, I just love Charlie Brown!

 

 

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Our #TrunkRTreat theme was a Hit!!!! #TheGreatPumpkinCharlieBrown 🎃 Man did I have a blast!! I love doing crafty things 😊

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10.  I love Lucy!  Spot on, folks, spot on!

 

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Our #TrunkRTreat theme was a Hit!!!! #TheGreatPumpkinCharlieBrown 🎃 Man did I have a blast!! I love doing crafty things 😊

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11.  Simple big scary creature.  Easy and still very fun!

 

 

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Winging it worked. #trunkrtreat

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12.  Veggietales!

 

 

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Trunk R Treat 2015 #firstchurch #trunkrtreat #veggietales

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13.  This car was transformed into a Ninja Turtle.  Man, I used to love the Ninja Turtles when I was a kid!

 

 

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Chelsey and Scott at trunk-r-treat. #trunkrtreat #ninja #ninjaturtles #cousins

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14. Starbucks “Walk Thru” – too cute!

 

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#trunkrtreat Starbucks!

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15.  Eek!! Giant teeth make this vehicle a larger than life monster.

 

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RAWR!!!!! #TrunkRTreat #Halloween

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16.  This monster looks friendly.  Maybe it’s the soft big eyes or maybe it’s the flopping tongue.

 

 

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Another year and another loss… next year I really amp up my game… #TrunkRTreat

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17.  Have leftover birthday party decorations?  Wrap some empty boxes and voila, you have a cute birthday themed vehicle.

 

18.  This truck did a phenomenal job with their basketball court decor.

 

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THE 2014 BEST TRUNK WINNER ! The Memphis Tiger Basketball trunk #tlcmemphis #trunkrtreat

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19.  This space themed decor would be my daughter’s favorite.  She loves her some stars!

 

 

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Twinkly star trunk #tlcmemphis #trunkrtreat

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20.  Cookie Monster – yum, yum, yum!

 

 

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COOKIE TRUNK! #trunkrtreat #tlcmemphis

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There you have it, 20 trunk or treat decor ideas that vary from simple to complex.  I hope you’ve found something to inspire you for your trunk or treat decorating this Halloween season.

How Do You Teach Kids Manners and Respect?

When it comes to raising kids you’ll have to learn ways to teach your kids how to use their manners and what respect means. Being a parent is full of many responsibilities, and those responsibilities don’t seem to lessen as the kids get older. Teaching kids manners and respect in a purposeful way comes down to creating a lifestyle that encourages your kids to comprehend manners and respect naturally. If you’re looking for ways to purposefully teach kids manners and respect then you’ll enjoy these tips I’m sharing today.  This post contains affiliate links.

How to teach kids manners and respect

How Do You Teach Kids Manners and Respect?

 

Model Manners and Respect

Let’s face it, being married is no piece of cake. There will be times that your spouse upsets you or you don’t use proper manners and respect when handling various stressors in married life. While this is completely normal, the key is to remember that your kids are watching you. When it comes to being more aware of how to purposefully teach your kids manners and respect, it’s all about being a good role model. Whenever you’re feeling angry or make a mistake or treat someone in the house with disrespect or don’t use your manners out of frustration, be certain to correct your behavior so that your kids are able to see that no one is perfect but they can work to correct mistakes when manners or respect isn’t properly modeled.

Family Rules

Set Some Rules

At the end of the day kids truly thrive best on routine and rules. When it comes to trying to find ways to purposefully teach kids manners and respect you’ll want to start by setting some household rules. You may want to create a beautiful canvas sign in the home that features these house rules that set forth the expectations of manners. Having a beautiful decor canvas hung up in a family room that cites how each family member is expected to treat each other will help inspire your kids to visualize the rules each day without feeling the pressure to be perfect. Whenever your kids don’t follow these simple rules about manners and respect, you can have a consequence or discussion surrounding how they can try harder next time.  (The sign above can be found here on Amazon)

365 Manners Kids Should Know

Be The Coach

Your kids may learn some manners and respect through watching your example, there are times where kids will need a little coaching to truly get the concept of manners and respect down. Whenever you’re out in public or sitting down to dinner at home, try to be the coach to your kids. Being a coach for your kids means having more open discussions about when to use what manners and how to properly behave at a dinner table. While you will continue to lead by example, talking about the expectations of manners and when to properly use them will help you more purposefully teach kids about manners and respect in a way that will stay with them longer.  I’ve personally found that using books to teach manners is helpful. One that I’m wanting to buy is a popular book I found on Amazon called 365 Manners Kids Should Know.  It has 4.5 stars.

There is no one size fits all solution when it comes to purposefully teaching kids manners and respect. The idea is to figure out how each your kids learn best. Manners and respect are something that must be taught at a young age and reinforced throughout the entirety of childhood. Using these tips to teach kids manners and respect will help inspire a more positive family lifestyle where your kids utilize manners regularly without a reminder as they get older.

Silver Glue and Gold Foil Slime

Making slime is a favorite pastime for my kids. While this type of craft can be messy at times, it’s such a fun way to experiment with new ingredients and have some fun with your kids. I recently created a silver glue and gold foil slime that looks spectacular. As a means to help inspire you to start making beautiful slime with your family, I’m sharing some information about this slime along with a recipe to help guide you forward in making your own silver glue and gold foil slime with your kids today. This post contains affiliate links.

Silver Slime

A Fun Science and Chemistry Experiment

There are so many unique ways to educate children these days and making silver glue and gold foil slime is just one of the best ways to teach some science and chemistry in a home school environment. Whether you homeschool or not, using this fun craft idea as a means to educate your kids about chemistry and science is a fun time for everyone.

You’ll be teaching a concept called cross-linking when you mix the borate ions, known as slime activators, with the silver glue. These two ingredients mixed collide into a chemical reaction that creates the stretchy slime substance that kids enjoy playing with.

Elmers Silver Glitter Slime

The silver glue is a liquid substance that is made of molecules that help keep it in a liquid state until you mix the borate ions into the silver glue. The borate has ingredients that mix with the silver glue molecules repeated until the silver glue is no longer in a liquid state, rather when the mixture turns to slime it’s called a polymer.

Bet you didn’t realize there’s so much to learn from making this simple silver glue and gold foil slime with your kids? Use this fun craft time as a means to teach your kids about how molecules work and what active ingredients in the slime activators (sodium borate, borax powder, or boric acid) do with the silver glue to transition the glue from a liquid to a polymer.

Is slime a liquid or a solid?

This is a tricky question to answer because at the end of the day this silver glue and gold foil slime is neither a liquid nor a solid. Slime is a creation that seems to be both a liquid and a solid. You can play around with the ingredients to make this silver glue and gold foil slime appear to be more of a solid than a liquid, but in all reality, this substance that’s called polymer is more of a mixture between the liquid and solid-state.

Now that you’ve read a little bit about how this silver glue and gold foil slime can be a fun science and chemistry learning experiment, it’s time to follow the instructions below to make your own batch of silver glue and gold foil slime today.

How to make silver and gold glitter slime:

Basically, start slow, mix in the starch, add a little more, mix again, and keep doing that till it’s no longer sticky.  Toward the end of mixing you may have to knead it with your hands instead of a spoon.  There we go, now that my disclaimer is out of the way, let’s begin!

This silver and gold glitter slime needs a few specific ingredients, so let’s talk about that first. 

  • – Elmer’s Classic Glitter Glue.  I bought mine from a local craft store but found the Elmer’s Silver Glitter Glue cheaper on Amazon right now.  Keep in mind Amazon prices often fluctuate but it’s at a steal of a price right now.

In fact, there’s also a bundle pack of Elmer’s Glitter Glue to save you money and allow you to make a rainbow of slime options.

I’m a liquid starch slime fan but usually more glitter will show through when you use a contact lens solution plus baking soda instead.  This is because contact lens solution is clear and liquid starch has a kind of white-ish blue tinge.  Both of these options will make a great activator.
This one is a glitter glue so be prepared for it takes way more starch than a white glue would.  We used around 3/4ths of a cup but always add 1/4 a cup at a time and mix it in well.  When you get a consistency that no longer sticks to you and feels like you want it too you’re done.  Again, it’s not an exact science.

Silver Glitter Slime

Now onto the fun pictures of playing with the gold foil sheets.  These are incredible and I want to try them in all my future slimes.  They are just so neat!  They can also be found on Amazon here – Gold Foil Sheets.  Prices often change but right now you can get 100 sheets of this for less than $6 shipped.  I still can’t believe how affordable this fun crafting material is!

Silver Gold Foil Glitter Slime

Silver Gold Leaf Slime

Silver Gold Foil Slime

 

Gold Foil Slime

Gold Foil Silver Slime

Gold Foil Stretchy Silver Slime

Stretchy Silver Slime

Super Stretchy Silver Slime

Stretchy Silver Gold Leaf Slime

Stretchy Slime

Isn’t it beautiful?  I just adore it!

Gold Rolled Slime

I hope you and your kids can give our silver and gold glitter slime a try for yourself.  It truly is the prettiest slime I’ve ever made to date.  It rivals any of the expensive store bought putties and with slime you can create it to be the exact texture you want.  I love it!

More Ideas for Homeschooling in the Car

Homeschooling in the car is my way of describing taking the free time we have in the car and sometimes using it for educational purposes.  I’m not advocating for families to bring their workbooks along with them everywhere and wear their children out on school work.  Learning should be fun and a normal part of life.

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I hope this continued list of homeschooling in the car will help you enjoy your kids and make the most of your time in the car.  See our first post on Car Homeschooling here.

  • – Complete the story

This is one of my favorite games to play but is one of the hardest for me to play when driving so I usually have to sit out but I love hearing the stories my kids create.  One person begins to tell a story about anything at all.  After a few sentences they say, “and then…” Then the next person jumps in and adds a few more sentences to the story.  “and then…”   “and then…”  You get the picture.  The story can end anytime you want or after a set number of rounds.  Ours usually ends in full on belly laughs.  I love it!  It’s silly but works their creative juices, listening skills, comprehension, and vocabulary.

  • – License plate addition

One day my husband revealed that he has always had the quirk of adding license plate numbers in his head and I thought that was a great idea!  I held onto the idea until my kids were more fluent with their math skills but this is a great one.

  • – License plate rounding

After my husband shared the above game with us I transitioned it to a game that worked better for our kids at that time.  We decided to round the license plate number to the nearest ten, or hundred, you get the idea.  This was a fun game because it required them to think quickly.  When we first started we had the kids read the number out loud so we could help them with it in case the car drove away quickly.

  • – Geography game

Everyone names a location that begins with a letter of the alphabet beginning with A and going through to Z, while repeating the ones that were listed before. Alps, Belgium, China, Denmark…

  • – Jokes and Riddles

My kids are going through a stage where jokes and riddles are the bees knees.  They love them and always have a new joke to tell anyone they meet.  One of the favorites lately is, “What did the cat get when he crossed the desert on Christmas Day?”  The answer is….”sandy claws.”  Thinking through jokes and finding the humor in twisting the English language can be a challenging and rewarding experience.  I think that the rather dull opportunity that car trips provide is a great atmosphere for telling good old fashioned jokes.

I’ll be brainstorming more ideas for homeschooling with in the car and I hope you’ll share any and all ideas you have with me in the comments below.

Homeschooling in the Car

Do you find that you spend more time than you care to admit in the car?  I can vividly remember a friend’s mom mention to us while we were in junior high (yes, not middle school, I’m getting old) that if she lost weight driving her kids around that she would be much too thin. I guess it’s a good thing that wasn’t the case but I’ve often thought about that sentiment and wished it were true for myself.  As a homeschooling mom I want to make the most of the time I spend with my kids and find ways to fit in educational moments throughout the day, even on errand days and between trips to the park, friend’s houses, co-ops, libraries, and Walmart pick up (which is such a blessing!).  We don’t do school full on all the time, but I wanted to find ways to utilize the time in the car and not spend it surfing the radio endlessly.  Here are the tips that my family make use of and I hope it helps your family enjoy spending time with their kids in the car, whether you call it “carschooling” or not.

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  • – Talk

Okay, I had to start with this one because it seems the most obvious to people and it is the thing we do most of all.  We talk about what we’re doing (as has been the practice since before my kids could talk), plans we hope to do in the near future, how we feel about things, what we’ve been reading, things we saw on Alexa (which brings up so many interesting political and earth science discussions), and the list goes on and on.  Discussing things with kids opens the lines of communication and can help develop healthy relationships…the educational aspect is just a bonus.

  • – Audio books

By clicking here you can see the list of my favorite audio books for the whole family.  Audio books are better for long trips but they can be utilized for shorter trips as well.  My kids get so into the books though that they always hate to stop a story without things being wrapped up neatly.

  • – Twenty questions

We play this game a lot in our house.  Sometimes we’ll pick a book that we have and everyone else has to ask questions to figure out which one it is.  Animals and people are also good choices.

  • – iSpy

iSpy is a game that can be played with younger and older kids a like and it’s always fun.  To make it a little more challenging you could have the kids guess that particular -ing word, or -ly adverb.

  • – Memory work

If my kids are working on memorizing verses or a particular poem I’ll make a copy and set it in the passengers car.  Every time I get in the car I’ll recite the memory work.  After a few days I’ll expect them to finish it after I start it.  Then a few days later they’ll try reciting it on their own.  I’ve been amazed at how very quickly they can recall information when repeated in this way.

  • – Observe the world around you

My kids have always spotted school buses and city buses when we’re out.  It’s always been something they point out.  Other favorites are three wheel motorcycles (I don’t know the correct name, sorry!), fire trucks, diggers, trash trucks, Ashley furniture trucks (because my name is Ashley), etc.  One family I know assigns points for each special vehicle and the family keeps score of what they’ve all seen for a month.  For example motorcycles=10 points, emergency vehicles=10 points, emergency vehicles with their lights on=15 points.  I haven’t tried this yet but I can see how it would be helpful to practice math skills.

I’m sure there are more but these are our main ways to make the best use of the time we spend together in the car.  If you have anything to add I would love to hear your ideas.

Update: I’ve added more ideas for homeschooling in the car here.

How to Prepare Your Car for Back to School

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Carpool season is upon us once again!  Back to school means a lot of things to a lot of people.  Excitement.  Anticipation.  Dread.  A fresh start.  Hopefully you’re looking forward to the new school year but even if you’re not, I think these tips will help get your car, and in a small way you, better prepared for the adventures ahead.  Being organized helps life go smoothly but too often our poor cars go overlooked.  A clean and well stocked car can be helpful for giving us a sense of calm in a seemingly never ending stream of errands.

  • – Remove all the summer junk.  I use the word junk in a kind way.  Remove all summer camp crafts that never made it inside, library receipts, kid’s meal toys, etc. etc.  Take two bags out to your car and put the trash in one and the keepers in another.
  • – Vacuum all of the sand and dirt that has been collected through the summer.  While you’re at it you can remove car seats and get all the crumbs and cheerios that have settled there.
  • – Give the leather a nice cleaning with a dry cloth and the windows a wash.  Microfiber rags and water are great for both of these tasks.
  • – Add items you want to have on hand just in case.  Think about last school year, what were the items that you or your kids kept continually forgetting?  Maybe it was a pencil or a lunch for the kiddos.  Whatever it was pack a few extra in your car for those days.  Stash some power bars or small bags of almonds on hand for forgotten snacks or meals, maybe a pair of earrings for you for when you’re running behind, or a sudoku book for the car pick-up line.  Maybe you need a tube of deodorant for days you dashed out the door or just a new cell phone charger.  Try and think ahead and plan for the unexpected.
  • – Double check your car’s maintenance schedule.  Does it need any regular work?  A top off on the window spray?
  • – Make sure everyone riding in your car is riding in the correct seats.  Because children grow and the laws (and just recommendations change) it’s a good time to stop and make sure you’re following the best recommended protocols.  The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration website has important tips on seat belt fit and position.  It also has information about how to install car seats as well as guidelines on selecting a car seat or booster based on your child’s age and size.

(Related: 1 Car Seat Rule Many Don’t Follow)

Treat your car like an extension of your home, wash it, love it, stock it, and enjoy it and it will be there for you.

How to Prepare for a Road Trip With Kids

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When you’re planning a family road trip with kids you may wonder how in the world you’ll ever survive this trip. It’s easy to get overwhelmed with the idea of keeping kids entertained during a road trip with kids as well as wonder if your family vehicle is ready to go the long haul. While having some fears over what to expect and whether or not you’re fully prepared for this road trip are normal, I’m here to tell you that you can prepare for a road trip with kids in such a way that you have a fantastic time and wonder why you haven’t done more family road trips in the past.

How to Prepare for a Road Trip With Kids

How to Prepare for a Road Trip With Kids

Get Out The Map

So many people rely on GPS navigation these days that it’s no wonder fewer families actually own a physical map. The thing is though, if you truly want to enjoy a road trip with kids then you’ll want to get out that old school map to plan out your route. Sit down with your kids and use this time as a geography lesson as you work with your kids to jot down your road trip route. Using a marker, you can easily review the map to make little dots for locations you wish to visit during your family road trip.

Get Your Vehicle Prepared

Make sure you have a toolkit on hand for extra oil, a funnel, spare tire, jumper cables, and an extra gas can so that you’re ready for any minor emergencies that may occur during your road trip with kids. Schedule an appointment for a tune-up, oil change and routine maintenance check for your family vehicle before you venture out on the open road for a family road trip. Following each of these steps to get your vehicle prepared will ensure you have a reduced chance for any mishaps with your vehicle.

Pack Like a Minimalist

Going on a road trip with kids can be a great time to teach your kids how to pack light and learn more about what a need versus a want is. Since you’ll be packing up the family vehicle to go on a road trip with kids you’ll have minimal storage space. Sit with your kids to review the necessary items to bring along for this family road trip so that you don’t end up having too many things in the family vehicle making it difficult to be comfortable during this long trip.

Think About Entertainment

No matter how well you plan this road trip with kids there will be times that they get frustrated from being inside the family vehicle for long periods. This is where having a route planned out via the old school map will come in handy. Use the map for the kids to try to follow the route during the family road trip. This will not only keep them entertained but also allow them to learn more about geography and how to read a map.

(See our Audio Books for Kids list.  These can be great for car trips!)

Prepare Easy Snacks

While traveling on the road during this road trip with kids everyone will begin to get hungry from time to time. This is why it’s important to prepare some easy snacks that can sit for long periods in a car or a cooler with ice. In addition to some protein-rich snack options, you’ll want to pack plenty of water so that the family can stay hydrated during this family road trip. Consider using one cooler that will fit inside the family vehicle or have each family member pack a small individual size cooler to keep their own snacks and water in during this family road trip.

When it comes to preparing for a road trip with kids the key is to make sure you have a route planned for a fun family road trip itinerary, a family vehicle that’s gone through proper maintenance, and some ways to keep the kids entertained during this trip. There are so many fun experiences a family can enjoy during a road trip with kids. From new sights, cultures, and historical landmarks your family road trip will be an absolute blast so as long as you follow my tips to prepare for a road trip with kids.

How to Curb Sensory Overload

When you’re faced with raising a child who has sensory issues, it’s no easy feat to avoid all meltdowns. With that being said, you can find ways to curb sensory overload by making small adjustments to your household and the daily routine for your child. Today I wanted to share a few tips on how to curb sensory overload so that you and your child can start to have more days without meltdowns.

How to Curb Sensory Overload

Understand Sensory Overload

This will take some hard work on the effort of parents and caretakers for a child who suffers from sensory sensitivities. Take time to understand, make a note and evaluate what puts your child into sensory overload. Once you understand what can put your child into a sensory overload meltdown, then you’ll be better equipped to adjust things in day to day life to accommodate your child’s needs.

Reduce Visual Stimulation

Sometimes too much movement or having too many things going on at once will put a child into sensory overload. Do your best to minimize visual stimulation around the home and other places that your child frequents. Consider lighting as a visual stimulation, make sure your home has softer lighting and isn’t too bright for your sensitive child.

Lower Noise Levels

Often time’s children who suffer from sensory overload are more apt to hear every noise around them. Learn to minimize and lower noise levels for your child. If you have to go to a grocery store, consider placing earphones on your child’s head to minimize the impact of a loud grocery store. You may also work to keep the household noises lower on a regular basis.

Be Compassionate

Children who suffer from sensory overload will often feel out of control and as if no one understands what they’re going through. As your child gets older, it’s important for them to feel like they have an ally in you and their friends. Learn to show compassion towards your child during a sensory overload event, be calm and speak in a low tone to help them during a sensory overload moment.

There you have it a few ways to curb sensory overload. In time, as your child gets older they will learn what works best for the person they are. Living with sensory overload isn’t easy but as your child gets older, and they start to learn some coping mechanisms of their own, you will smile with pride knowing that you helped them learn how to survive in the real world.

7 Ways to Make Tent Camping More Comfortable

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Tent Camping Comfortable

Whether driving the next town over or hours away tent camping is a fun and frugal way to enjoy nature with your family.  While kids love a night under the stars, for adults it might be a bit challenging. Many think that tent camping means you need to sleep on a hard surface and wake up with a backache, but the truth is there are plenty of ways to make your slumber a cozy one. Look below at 7 ways to make tent camping more comfortable, and see how easy it can be to tent camp and actually wake up refreshed.

1. Be sure to insulate the floor.
A dirt floor can be quite cold, and that can be an issue when you are trying to sleep. Lay some type of insulation down such as an area rug, some thin foam, or even a tarp. This will help provide some protection and insulation, keeping you warm and dry.

2. Consider an air mattress.
Your back will thank you! Take an air mattress with you, and don’t forget the pump. The extra support will help you sleep better and be easier on your joints. Be sure to check it for holes prior to going, so you don’t run into any issues when it comes time to inflate it. Don’t forget the repair patches as well.

3. Use your household linens.
You would be amazed at how use you get to your own household linens. Take your household sheets, blankets, and pillows so you can sleep well. Take more than you think you will need, since it is better to be safe than sorry. This includes sheets, a throw blanket, and multiple pillows and cases.

4. Lavender oil can help.
A few dabs of lavender oil in your tent can help you feel more relaxed and may be able to help keep bugs away too. Just add a few drops around your sleeping area and around the entrance of the the tent.

5. Check and double check the tent screens.
Before you head out, check the screens on your tent well. Nothing will ruin your sleep more than bugs. Check the screens and repair any rips ahead of time so bugs don’t have an easy way in. You will be glad you did!

6. Bring your sleepytime favorites.
This means your favorite book, a small nightlight, your cozy pajamas, silk pillowcase, fuzzy blanket and other items that you relate to bedtime. This way you can still enjoy the same bedtime routine and your brain will know when it is time to shut off.

7.Don’t forget the lights.
Stumbling around in a dark tent can be a pain. Be sure you have some battery operated or solar charged lights. This way you can have a little reassurance in the dark, which kids are going to love as well.

Are you ready to enjoy some tent camping with your family? Consider these 7 ways to make tent camping more comfortable, and see how easy it can be to actually enjoy your night in the great outdoors.

The Five Best Family Road Trip Hacks

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Road Trip Hacks

If a road trip is in your summer plans, you’re going to want to check out these family road trip hacks! Don’t just survive your road trip, enjoy it!

Now that the kids are out of school, it’s time to start focusing on family vacations. Some of you will be flying to your final destination but plenty of you will be hitting the open road.   If you have a family road trip in the works, you know that this particular kind of vacation requires preparation. Without preparation, you’re going to end up with cranky kiddos asking if you’re there yet every five minutes. Ok, that will probably happen anyway, but they will be less cranky when they ask if you have a magic toolkit of family road trip hacks that you can dig into. And that’s why we’re here today. I want you to have a memorable for all the right reasons, not all the wrong ones!

The Family Road Trip Hacks You Need

1. Leave in the wee hours so the kids sleep a good portion of the trip. We like to leave around 3:00 AM so we can sneak in at least a few hours of drive time before they wake up. When they wake up, you better have your game on!  This is the time to break out your activity books, craft projects, etc.

2. Evaluate what you’re going to pack. If you have a small car you’ll want to make sure you don’t over pack.  When you’re cramped you’re all more likely to be grumpy.

3. Anticipate their every need, meaning, you want drinks, snacks and boredom busting activities at the ready! I also always have plenty of motion sickness remedies on hand.

4. Take advantage of rest stops. Sure, you can use the restroom without having to take a detour, but did you know that many rest stops also have playgrounds? Stopping for an extra 10 minutes or so to let the kids run off all that extra energy is worth your sanity!

5. Journal your trip. It’s hard to make a mental note of all the best parts of your trip when you’re in the thick of it, so having a family journal that everyone can capture their favorite memories in takes the pressure off Mom.  Plus, it’s a great way to remember funny things that are said and create cute inside jokes for your family to share.

Now who’s ready to rev up the family vehicle? With these family road trip hacks you should have a relatively stress free road trip ahead of you! Make this the trip your family talks about for years to come because you had such a magical time, not because Sally fought with Jimmy for 12 hours straight.