So I have had a few friends ask me how I managed with 2 children on my own and on such a very long trip and my answer is always, ‘Preparation.’ Preparation is key especially with children because you never know what can happen. Children can be so unpredictable at times especially when the environment has changed.
So i sat down and did my research for the things I could possibly take with us for the children. Every household has some form of tablet or otherwise. In my house i am a big fan of Apple products. I find them to be user friendly and children can operate them without issues. I made sure i had my children’s favourite apps up to date. Our favourites are the ones in the picture below. These are educational, biblical and fun ones too. I then went for my all time favourite app ‘VLC’.
Our most used apps
With VLC I can upload any movies or tv shows the kids like and myself of course. What determines the number of uploads you can put i guess is the space in your device. I made sure i cleared most things so i would maximise the storage. I think the thing to do is to make sure before you delete your photos and music you have it saved in your cloud.
I then uploaded the most favourite tv shows and at the moment Nashe is into Bubble guppies and Mickey mouse clubhouse. I made sure i put episodes they had not watched before. Now i am aware of what they have watched because i always make sure whatever is on is appropriate and they are enjoying so at the end of the day i get to see what it is. On Both devices I then put Boss baby, Moana, Frozen and Trolls. These two will watch these movies over and over and over and not get bored. I can now sing most of the songs by heart because of the number of times they have watched them. Sometimes i am even singing them in my sleep. So that was the digital side of our preparation for the trip.
I am one of those parents who has done research on screen time and all and i try to limit it. Besides the fact that I spent most of my childhood outside and would like my kids to do the same and use their imaginations. So i brought along sticker books and colouring books. I had little surprises of African animals in their bags and pencil cases so that even made it more exciting especially for Kupa because he knew where we were going. I also put little toy cars and those were a hit at South African airport because Kupa spent most of our 5hrs layover on the floors playing with them. Nashe jumped in here and there but she was more into the little babies in the airport. My kids love to read too so i bought new books that they hadn’t already read so that didn’t make it boring for them.
Our trip was going to be so long so i was racking my brains trying to think of other things to take with us but at the end of the day we just took everything i have talked about. The advantage was we traveled overnight so they slept most of the time and when they weren’t playing or reading, they were up and down the aisles or using their imaginations to pass time.
I hope this will be helpful to most of the parents when you have to go on a long trip. This even works for short trips too. I travel a lot with the kids and they are in the car for up to 4 hours straight so this is useful as well.