Many have asked me how Julian and I kept our sanity driving West coast to East coast this summer and back.
I know everybody thinks being stuck in a car with kids for hours on end is terrible but I thought that was the easiest part. Finding decent food on highways is much harder then spending time with family on them. Of course I could tell you that I discussed answer to life, the Universe, and Everything ( which we all know is 42 ) with my kid for hours but I did enlist some electronic help occasionally. Not to say we didn’t have some fantastic conversations, punch countless bugs and other fun activities. But I also gave Julian my iPad and found some great things for him to watch while we drove through less exciting landscapes. Kansas for example is a 3 movie drive in itself!
Although I mostly let Julian wear my fancy wireless headsets while watching movies I admit to asking him to stream Despicable me through car stereo because it’s too much fun not to. You know the jokes are good when you are not seeing the story yet laugh listening to it.
Another huge winner was Planet Earth: The Complete Collection. I grew up watching Mr. Attenborough’s documentaries so I found listening to his narration really soothing. We pulled over at a rest stop once just so I could watch a beetle in Sahara desert struggle with his new acquired camel dung. Netflix also suggested to us Moonrise Kingdom ( I am convinced they follow me on Twitter and must know we are obsessed with Wes Anderson ) which although Julian saw last summer he loved seeing again. It’s not until you listen to Anderson’s movies without watching them that you realize he is not only a visual genius but his music choices and impeccable silence pauses are perfectly combined in movies too! Another fantastic film we found was ‘On the way to school’ – a must see for any school aged child! Also ‘Living on one dollar’. Honestly if you have your child’s attention for a couple of hours it is the best time to show them the real world. Both these were inspiring and humbling and truly a must see.
I had no problem however with Julian wearing headsets when watching LEGO movies. Who knew there were that many of them? And yes, I absolutely let him catch up on all the episodes of Clone Wars. Sometimes a girl just needs a little peace and quiet while driving to
daydream and decorate my little cabin in the woods concentrate on the road.
All and all there was never a moment I hated being in the car with my family during this road trip. Some stretches were boring to drive but never was there boredom in the car. Bruce napped, Julian and I talked, Max looked out the window and trucks kept passing me ( because apparently I am one of the few people on Earth who actually drives only 10 miles over the speed limit ). Sure, I love to fly but sometimes it really is all about the journey. And having the right apps.