We were supposed to go away over the weekend to visit my parents, but something came up at Hubby’s work and instead of cancel our plans all together I decided to make the trip with Willow by myself.
It was a daunting thought, as Willow generally hates long car journeys. But I decided I would take it slow, make lots of stops and see how it goes. We need to get the hang of long distance road trips as we will be driving to Durban on Saturday and that will be six hours in the car!
So I packed up our stuff, loaded the car and waited for nap time. Just before we were due to hit the road I breastfed Willow and changed her, making sure she had plenty of bum cream on (I find that when she sits for a long time in the car she gets all red and sore. Lots of bum cream seems to help). I then strapped her into her car seat and we set off.
Luckily my plan to leave at nap time worked and she fell asleep pretty quickly. She slept for just about two hours and when she woke up we were just about 20 kilometres from a well known rest stop and I decided it was as good a place as any for our first stop.
I had packed a cooler bag filled with food for Willow and snacks for me. So I was able to feed her lunch as usual and after a nappy change she was able to play a bit on a nice grassy patch. This rest stop borders on a farm that has ostriches, buffalo, wildebeest and zebra. Willow really enjoyed watching the animals as she ate her cheese and then having a quick crawl around before it was time to head off again.
Before we got going I took away all the toys she had on the first leg of the journey and produced a new rotation of toys, gave her a bottle of water for the road and put on a kids CD. This worked like a bomb. She had new interesting things to entertain her and liked listening to the CD as we drove. It kept her going for the next hour and a half with absolutely no complaining!
We had another stop when we reached the town where I met my parents. We all decided to garb something to eat and Willow got to play and crawl around again. She also got more to eat and drink and new things to look at. She was happy as a clam. After lunch it was time for her second nap of the day and my Mom came with us for the last 45 minute drive to their house. Willow slept in the car and only woke up when we pulled into the drive way.
I am so incredibly proud of her and how well she did in the car. I just hope our trip to Durban will be as successful!